Are you discouraged with the progress you are making with your small business? Do you feel like you are constantly taking one step forward and two steps back?
Whether you’ve been in business a year or a decade, you are not alone. Many successful small business owners went through the same phases on their way to where they are today, but there is one thing they all have in common: they don’t give up.
Where there is a will, there is a way
Keep your eye on the prize. You’re in it for the long haul. Rome wasn’t built in a day. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. These may all be cliché’s, but in this situation, they are apt. Success takes time to cultivate, but in the meantime, there are lots of things you can do to help.
Let’s take a look at some of the things you can do today to support the ongoing success of your small business:
1. Give your customer service an overhaul
These days, customer service is #1. It’s the number one reason consumers develop loyalty to a brand or company, and it’s the number one reason they part ways with said company. Brand loyalty makes the job of selling much easier. Look at your comments, what people like, what they don’t like. Look at what your competitors are doing, and emulate (if it’s that good), or kick it up a notch by revamping your customer service policies or retraining your staff in customer satisfaction techniques. It could be as simple as hiring a professional answering service, or enlisting a virtual office to ensure emails and other important communications are answered more expediently.
2. Build your reputation
Your company’s reputation, both online and offline, is your calling card. Cross-promoting with another business is a great way to raise awareness, as is working on boosting your online presence. Posting regularly on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram will help you build your presence while engaging a whole new audience. Have happy, satisfied customers? Ask them to review your business or service on Google or Facebook. Ask for endorsements or testimonials and place them on your website.
3. Give back
Giving back to your community does wonders for your company’s image: sponsor a local youth team, take up a cause, or volunteer with a local charity. Put a team together to raise money for an initiative that is important in your community and invite other local businesses to participate. The more you are seen as part of the solution, the better your visibility. The more visible you are, the more business you will attract. It’s a domino effect of sorts, but the good kind.
4. Revamp your online image
Have you looked at your website lately? Do you have a business website? Your website should be ground zero for what you offer. Your social media accounts, customer service, and all other online efforts radiate from there. If you are not getting the kind of action from your website as you think you should be, maybe it’s time for an overhaul. Take a look and see what your competition is having success with, and take it a step further. There are plenty of DIY website builders, which are great if you’re even a little bit web-savvy, or you can hire a WordPress designer through a platform such as UpWork or Fiverr.
5. Go mobile or go bust
If your site is not mobile-friendly, you are missing out on about 90% of the web traffic you ought to be getting. Search engines prioritize websites that are mobile-friendly. Most people surf, search, and buy on their mobile phones or tablets, so if you’re not there, you’re nowhere. Ensure that your site is responsive, which means it will look and function the same no matter what computer, browser or device it is being viewed on.
While these five tips are just a few of the ways you can make your small business more successful, they should give you a good start on your way to greater things.
My Annapolis Office: your partner in small business success
Small businesses are always looking for ways to improve their chances for success. If you are a small business owner in the Annapolis area, we would love to meet you. Drop us a line so we can get acquainted, or call today to schedule a tour.