Whether you’re thinking of starting a business or you’ve been running one for years, growth should always be your focus. With that in mind, finding new growth strategies can be tough, and that’s even truer if you’re just starting out. The following seven business growth strategies that absolutely anyone in any industry can follow will help you succeed in today’s technology-driven day and age.
These days, people rely on their phones for everything. It’s an alarm clock, a personal assistant, a connection to the outside world – and a way for people to buy the things they want and need. If your business isn’t already optimized for mobile, you’re already missing out on huge potential for growth. More than 30% of all online sales come from mobile phones and tablets. Recent research suggests that mobile shopping will skyrocket in the coming years, so if you want to capitalize on that growth, make sure your website is up to the task, and make sure it’s mobile optimized and responsive, too.
Provide an End-to-End Experience
No matter what industry you’re in, the competition is fierce. One of the best things you can do for yourself is create a loyal customer base who will come back to you time and again. These days, you need to have more than a superior product. In fact, many consumers will knowingly buy sub-par products from companies they like and trust as opposed to quality products from companies that aren’t as engaged with their customers. Give people an experience with your brand. Make sure your products are available. Offer outstanding promotions. Engage with customers via social media. These things will create that end-to-end experience that today’s consumers crave.
Don’t Forget about SEO
Whether you’re selling a single product with a few variations or thousands of different products in a catch-all shop, search engine optimization is still very much relevant. In fact, it’s one of the most important ways to make an e-commerce website shine. Keywords certainly help, but you’ll also want to make sure your content is fresh and relevant. Google’s more recent algorithms also take the overall user experience into consideration, so things like your site’s responsiveness and bounce rate will also come into play. Do your best to keep up with SEO so you can rank highly through Google (and other search engines) and get more traffic.
Make the Checkout Process a Snap
There’s nothing more frustrating than filling a cart with products, then sitting through an endless checkout process that is slow, difficult to navigate, or filled with popup advertisements. One of the best business growth strategies of them all is simplifying the checkout process as much as possible. Some options here include allowing customers to create accounts with you through social media, providing one-click checkouts through PayPal or Amazon, and making sure customers can see all the vitals – total cost, tax, shipping, estimated delivery date, and more – easily without having to search.
Don’t Discount Affiliate Marketing
If you think affiliate marketing is just for the big players like Amazon and eBay, think again. In fact, even very small businesses can benefit from having affiliate programs if they get the right affiliates. Offering affiliates a small commission in exchange for more exposure may seem like it takes away from your bottom line when your business is still growing, but is a great long term strategy that will maintain your upward trajectory.
Promote Your Business All the Time
Self-promotion is never greedy. In fact, if you’re a small business owner, it’s really the only way to go. You have to get the word out there, so don’t be afraid to advertise. Use email marketing, email newsletters, social media outlets and more to get your name out there and show people who you are. Social media contests and discount codes in emails can help drive interest, as well.
Listen to Your Customers
Something that far too many business owners fail to do in the very beginning of their endeavors is actually listen to what their customers have to say. This can provide some incredibly valuable insight into what you can do to improve their experience, whether it’s to offer a different product, change your website, offer a different payment method, or even provide better customer service overall. You can do this with surveys, but many smaller business owners find that sending a thank-you note with an invitation for customers to email you about their experiences works even better. It’s more personal that way, and when you don’t have thousands of customers yet, personal is the best way to go.
Try Some Targeted Marketing
Finally, of all the incredibly simple business growth strategies out there, targeted marketing is one of the most helpful. Essentially, you’re choosing a group of people – whether it’s people who purchased from you once and never returned, people who have abandoned their shopping carts, or people who simply visit your site regularly without buying anything – and figuring out what you need to do to get them to buy from you. Look into some targeted marketing techniques and try a few that seem to work well for you.
There are dozens of business growth strategies out there, and while they are all helpful in their own right, many simply do not apply to small business owners or to those who have online shops. These strategies are perfect for almost anyone, and they work best when used together to help drive traffic and sales.