If you’re a small business owner, you’ve got an uphill climb ahead. While it’s not true that 9 out of 10 new businesses fail, it is true that 30% fail the first year, 50% fail in the next five years, and 66% fail in the next ten. That’s a long time to stay thriving, so as you make your plans for success, think long-term. Surviving your first year in business is a great goal–but surviving your next twenty is a better one. As you go forward, here are some tips for keeping your revenue close, and your profit closer.
Don’t Hire (or Hire Differently)
You likely can’t run this business by yourself, but there’s more than one way to get office work done. Consider hiring a freelancer or digital assistant, who won’t take up office space. No office means no rent, no heating bills, no janitorial staff. A smaller office means less of them. You can also hire interns or temps to save on salary costs. Not every job needs to be done long-term, so a staffing agency like Sirius Technical Services can help you acquire a valuable temp employee.
Ads will always be a great way of growing business, but the cost of ads adds up. As much as you can, stay away from traditional advertising. Instead, try to make use of free resources on the internet. Start an SEO-heavy blog for your company, or run a YouTube channel. Both those avenues, if cleverly run, can bring viewers to your website.
If you’re a very small business (think you and two other people) you could benefit from making financial investments. While you’ll want to do so carefully and fill out the necessary paperwork, using a small margin of company profit towards sustainable investing could bring in some much needed financial cushioning.
Know Your Customers
Last, but not least, the more you know your customers, the more effectively you can reach them. Ads geared towards women in their twenties will look different from ads geared towards both genders in their forties. The more you know your customers, the more you can reach them, by running ads where they’re most likely to be. You’ll also get a better sense of how much they’ll spend, and you can alter your prices accordingly.
While running a small business is certainly a challenge, the failure of others isn’t any indication of how well you’ll do. As you invest and plan, take cost saving measures wherever possible. With the proper planning, you’ll be strong and thriving in thirty years.