Your small business is off to a good start and ready to take on the world. You have a business plan in place and if all goes well in about five years or so you expect to franchise your idea.
As important as longer term goals are, it is those short-term goals you need build to get you where you’re going. They represent goals you will complete within the next year and they should be specific, measurable and action-oriented. Moreover, your goals should also be realistic and attainable.
Bring in more business and your business will thrive. You may have a plan to boost your sales by 30 percent in one year, an attainable number you have calculated is within your reach.
Instead of aiming for the 30 percent all at once, break it down into more manageable pieces. This can mean a 2.5 percent increase each month, what comes out to 30 percent for the year. By working in smaller increments you can review your progress and adjust accordingly, if needed.
Contain Your Costs
When you launch a business, your outgo can be much larger than your income. That’s natural for any business as you deal with start up costs. Nevertheless, once the launch period has ended, you should begin to rein in your expenses advises Heubal Material Handling, Inc..
There are a number of ways you can contain your costs. Employing a smarter inventory process can help — simply time your deliveries to occur just as those items are needed. Inventory will then come and go at a faster rate.
You might also look at how you are spending your marketing dollars. New businesses typically have to pour greater amounts of money to promoting what they are doing with the return coming later. Evaluate how your marketing dollars are spent and look for ways to get a bigger return for less money.
If your customers are happy, then they’ll likely become repeat customers. Moreover, they’ll also tell others about your business. You need to work diligently to ensure top customer satisfaction or risk losing their business.
Businesses that truly serve their customers gain a reputation for excellence. You can’t put a price on that, but you can see where such top-notch service leads to: a loyal customer base.
Your involvement on the social networks can help you attract and retain customers. There are a variety of websites that can do the trick to include: Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Google Plus and LinkedIn, to name a few.
If you use Facebook, then create a business page and link it to your own page. Provide updates about your business, including specials. If you have a blog, you can use Facebook to power your comment section.
With Twitter, you might dispense bits of advice to your customers. It can be a great place to connect locally too as area businesses and customers follow your updates.
Pinterest is especially beneficial to companies where visual displays are important. For instance, if you have a bakery, then post photos of your delicious desserts — you’ll gain an audience in no time.
The advantage of using social networks is clear: it gives you a low cost platform to reach your customers. Make good use of social networks and your business will thrive.
Carefully set short-term goals for your small business, outlining the attainable as you explore your options. Use the SMART system — specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely — as you make your plan. You should also avoid BHAGs — big, hairy, audacious goals. There is nothing wrong with being extra ambitious, but they rarely help you achieve the success you need for the short term.