02 Nov 2017
Why are you starting your own business? Is it the desire to make a lot of money? More time with your family? Or maybe it’s so that you don’t have to answer to anyone else? Those are all benefits of being self-employed, so how do you make sure that your business doesn’t fail?
Here are three key reasons why businesses fail:
Little or no market research
Many business owners make the mistake of making or selling a product or service for which there is little or no demand. You will not have all the information you need about potential demand for your product or service if you don’t do sufficient market research before you start your business.
It is vital that you research the following well before you make the decision to start trading:
• Where your customers shop or buy, how often they buy and how much they spend
• Your competitors – who they are, who buys from them, and how they are different from you
• The trends and issues in your business sector or industry – is the market growing or in decline? Are there any external threats to your industry?
No clear marketing plan or strategy
All businesses need sufficient customers and sales to enable them to cover their costs and make a profit, but customers won’t come to you unless they know about your product or service and what benefits it will give them.
If you do not have a clear marketing plan, you are at risk of making the following mistakes which will ultimately result in the failure of your business:
• Not having enough customers and not knowing how to find any
• Selling your product or service based on its features rather than on its benefits to your customers.
• Failing to describe your product or service accurately or legally
• Pricing your product too high/too low
Lack of Planning
Anyone who has ever been in charge of a successful major event knows that were it not for their careful, methodical, strategic planning and hard work success would not have followed and it’s the same in businesses.
• It is critical for all businesses to have a business plan. Many small businesses fail because of fundamental shortcomings in their business planning. It must be realistic and based on accurate, current information and educated projections for the future
We can help – For details of our next Understanding Enterprise Workshop, click here
No Website and No Social Media Presence
If you have a business you need a website and a social media presence. At the very least, every business should have a professional looking and well-designed website that enables users to easily find out about their business and how to avail themselves of their products and services.
Your website should include your address, phone number and hours of operation, and should be listed in Google My Business so it will show up when shoppers search for what you sell by location. Even if you don’t have customers come to your place of business and/or you get most of your business through networking and referrals, you need a website so potential customers can research your business before they call you. If you don’t have a website and your competitors do, you’ll lose out.
You need to have social media profiles on the services your clientele are most likely to use for the same reason. If you don’t, you won’t look professional and will lose business to competitors who do at least have profiles on popular social media sites.
If you have products that can be sold online, or you can take orders online, that’s an added benefit. But at bare minimum you need a website that lets customers know what you offer and how they benefit by doing business with you.
We can help – For details of the the next Marketing for Success Workshop, Call 0845 340 9980
For more information on starting a business, contact the Start Up team on 0845 340 9980 or click here