You can grow your business by finding ways to increase sales or by looking for new markets. To increase sales you may have to introduce new products or services, expand your market, increase your marketing activities or improve customer service. If you are a manufacturer, this could mean increasing your productivity to meet demand.
INTRODUCE NEW PRODUCTS OR SERVICE
Provide a broader range of products or services for your clients. You'll need to research your market to see if there is a desire for your proposed offering. Consider using some of your existing clients as a test group. Getting feedback from a test group can help you manage some of the risks and learn how the product or service can be improved. Pay special attention to marketing and promoting your new products or services so that people know about them.
EXPAND TO NEW DOMESTIC MARKETS
Expanding into new markets can be costly, but it can increase your client base. Market research will help you understand the potential new market and help you devise a strategy. You'll also need to consider marketing, sales, distribution, and increasing your production to meet the new demand.
ENHANCE YOUR SALES CHANNELS
Evaluating and optimizing your sales channels could help you reach more clients, increase your market control, and improve profitability. For example, you could:
- Provide your sales staff with enhanced training
- Contract independent sales representatives or hire your own
- Add retail outlets
- Use resellers
- Implement an e-business strategy
You may be able to improve the efficiency of your marketing activities. Track the outcome of your current marketing or advertising and be prepared to change your strategy if you are not seeing your desired results. Study your intended clients to know how best to reach them, and plan your marketing strategy accordingly.
CHANGE YOUR PRICE
Changing your prices, terms, or conditions of billing could stimulate market demand for your products or services. Be aware of what your competitors are offering and what your own profit margins are to determine if you can reduce your cost. If lowering your price isn’t an option, improving a deal with favourable terms can often influence customers.
BE AWARE OF THE COMPETITION
Always be aware of what your competitors are doing. This information helps you understand their behaviours, capabilities and limitations. If you have this knowledge, you will be better prepared to defend your market position, react to changes, and find new markets.
IMPROVE COMMUNITY RELATIONS
Increase your presence and visibility in your community. Activities such as sponsoring community events, speaking at engagements, or supporting a local sports team can raise awareness of your business and stimulate sales.
DON'T NEGLECT CUSTOMER SERVICE
Be aware of the customer's perception of your customer service quality or responsiveness. Positive word of mouth from a happy customer is valuable to your business.
KNOW WHEN TO STOP
If you have sectors, services or product lines with low margins, low profitability or excessive selling costs, it may be time to eliminate them. This can be difficult if you have commitments to existing offerings, but, removing less profitable products or services can save you money and allow you to reinvest more wisely.
(Source: Canada Business Ontario)