Boosting a business from small to big takes time and a huge amount of effort. However, by bringing together these key strategies, a company can reduce costs, become more efficient, and encourage healthy and lasting growth.
In Australia, 96 per cent of all businesses are small businesses, producing more than $330 billion in economic output annually.
Only a small percentage of companies achieve ‘big business’ status and taking that leap can be daunting. However, these five key growth strategies can help get your business to the next level.
1. Systems and processes
Managing a business often involves instinctual decisions, but having systems and processes in place can streamline the day-to-day running of a business and encourage growth. An organised line of attack assists with consistency, efficiency and understanding the goals and requirements for further growth.
2. Market segmentation
Once you have defined these systems and processes, it’s important to look at who your market is. By determining this, you can more efficiently allocate resources, pursue opportunities, anticipate problems and find solutions. The way you orient your business helps you identify future growth opportunities and improve your current standing.
3. Strong digital footprint
Having a strong digital footprint can help improve a business’ customer engagement and credibility, while also increasing profits. PricewaterhousCoopers estimates that small businesses could unlock an additional $49.2 billion of private sector output over the next 10 years by making more efficient use of digital technologies. Deloitte suggests digitally engaged businesses earn $350,000 more annually than their peers.
Franchising is a well-recognised and appealing means to grow a business, although in Australia it only accounts for 3.7 per cent of small business activity. Franchisees can gain from lower risks and costs, existing brand recognition, national marketing campaigns, infrastructure and customer confidence, as well as operational support from the franchisor. Customer confidence is a key part of long-term growth.
5. Leveraging partnerships
If you don’t want to join a franchise network, another option is a business partnership. Leveraging partnerships have a number of benefits for both partners. You can share knowledge, skills, assets and relationships to lower costs and increase growth. Partnerships lower both the cost and risks of trying new things, enabling small businesses to experiment with new ideas. If you are partnering with a more established business, you can also gain from their credibility. However, this option can expose your business to greater risk if not approached with legal and financial counsel.
A less risk adverse option is to implement an attractive and rewarding partner referral program that shows your appreciation to your loyal referral partners as well as an incentive for new referral partners.