You’ve managed to open your doors and get customers interested in what you’re selling. That’s great! But now you have to keep the momentum going so your doors – and your business – stay open. Many startup businesses fail within the first year, so here are the biggest factors you to look out for and avoid in order to stay successful.
Are you selling the right product?
This could mean a number of things. Does your research show that there is a need for the product or service you are selling? Or are you selling a product that you believe in? Even if there is no obvious need for what you are offering, if you are passionate about your business, you can market it to anyone. If you aren’t making as much money as you did when you first opened, it may be time to rethink your strategy. Why aren’t people buying what you’re selling? It could be the way you are promoting the product for their daily use. Maybe your customers don’t feel that you are enthusiastic about your services, so they don’t want to invest in you. It’s far better to close down early than to try to stick with it and lose more money in the long run.
Are you taking on too much?
Your business is your baby, so it’s understandable that you want to oversee every aspect to make sure it’s done right. Unfortunately, doing everything yourself means you will burn out more quickly. If that doesn’t matter to you, then consider the fact that if you do not show your employees how you like things done, then you will be doing everything yourself for as long as your business stays open. Many small businesses fail because owners and managers try to take on too much work. Ironically, this is what they wanted to avoid when they started the business. If you’re having trouble delegating, try using org chart software to plan out duties for individual employees. You can check on everyone’s progress, focus on your own work, and only get involved if someone appears to be slacking.
Have you planned ahead?
Before you opened for business, you probably planned everything to the last detail; budgets, market analysis, workforce needs, financials, and so many other things. Meticulous planning is still necessary once the business is open, perhaps even more so because there is more to keep track of and more planning to do for the rest of the business year. Your new business plan should consider things like analysis of the competition, a list of potential problems and solutions, ideas for a marketing campaign, a sales and expense forecast, and a budget for managing company growth. The information you use to put this plan together must be based on accurate, current information and educated projections for the future. If you ever need to apply for additional funding, this is the kind of information bankers will want to see.