Simple Tips for Handling a Business Expansion

Running a small business is nice, but there comes a time when every business owner wants to expand their business into something bigger and better. However, there are certain pitfalls that make it really difficult for businesses to handle their growth, especially if the growth is a rapid one. With bigger business come bigger responsibilities, and your ability to delegate them properly to competent managers. This is why it’s important to have a strong plan in place before even thinking about business expansion, and this guide will help you find out some of the best tips you can apply to your business in order to grow it successfully.

Focus on the Customers

One of the most important things when it comes to expanding a business is to understand and keep up with current market trends. If you fail to satisfy some of the basic customer demands you will never be able to grow your business beyond a certain point. This is why it’s vital to know as much as possible about their potential demands, as well as what’s trending and what your customers might be after. Whether it’s great customer service or a competitive product that can match any other out there, you need to know what to focus on.

Plan Your Marketing Campaign in Advance

No small business has ever expanded into a large one without investing heavily in advertising their brand. However, many business owners make a mistake and don’t actually factor in how the marketing itself needs to change once you start expanding, which can lead to a total crackdown of your expansion efforts. This is why it’s important to plan your marketing campaign in advance and try to cover all stages of expansion and how your campaign is going to adapt to meet the demands of an expanding business.

Running a business today means being online, which further means that investing in SEO is clearly something you should consider if you’re planning to expand. More traffic means more conversions, which will not only increase your revenue – but also boost your reputation as a brand.

Identify New Groups of Consumers

Expansion basically means moving past your existing customer base and thinking about how to attract new customer groups to become loyal to your brand. To do this, you need to diversify your products and/or services to better match the new groups you’ve identified. If you manage to do that, while also retaining your existing customer base, you’ll effectively have multiple income streams which will push your business forward. It’s always best to design new products to match what’s trending right now, so it’s important to constantly analyze the market for opportunities if you’re to get an edge over your competitors.

Get a Bigger Office

If you’re caught by surprise by your sudden expansion and you’re all of the sudden in a dire need of getting a new office, you might lose valuable time and money at a point in time when you need to be focused on the expansion. That’s why it’s crucial for you to identify when the expansion is going to happen and expand your workspace beforehand. While you might love your small, sturdy office, it’s no place to be once you start growing. Companies like Pinkjunk Rubbish & Junk Removal Company, 1800 Got Junk, Junk King, and numerous others, can get rid of the extra stuff you no longer need and save you a ton of time when moving an office.

Use Social Media to Your Advantage

Social media is a powerful marketing tool today, one that’s also the best marketing platform for many consumer groups out there. Be super-active on social media channels that best fit your industry. So if you’re in the business of interior design – Pinterest and Instagram might be your best bet. There are a couple of things to keep in mind when it comes to social media promotions, so pay attention.

  • Always Reply to Comments – There’s nothing users hate more than their comment staying unnoticed, so have someone vigorously answer everything that needs answering on your channels.
  • Deal with Negative Feedback in Private – If a customer had a bad experience with your service or a product, the last thing you want is to start a discussion for all the public to see. It’s bad for business, so always try to contact the user privately and settle things over there.
  • Fresh Content – Try to actively post fresh content, as that’s one of the best ways to get you traffic and conversions, as well as affect your SEO efforts.

Conclusion

Many businesses in the past decade failed for the sole reason of being unprepared for their expansion. Every small business owner wants their business to expand, so the more you’re ready for it – the better chances you’ll have to stay ahead of the game. By following these tips you’ll have a greater understanding of what awaits you and how to tackle it if you wish to successfully grow your business.

Guest author, Chloe Smith, is a cycling enthusiast, business consultant, and a part-time writer always willing to share tidbits of advice. She believes that passion, courage and, above all, knowledge breed success.

Give Your Small Business A Professional Makeover

As the owner of a small business; you’ll already be aware of how tough the competition is out there. To succeed as a company in today’s market; you’ll need to be a more appealing option than your competitors, for your potential consumers and clients. If you’re struggling to progress, grow, and keep the momentum high of customer traffic; it might be time for a business makeover. Putting your efforts into a fresh start, while sticking to your brand identity and online presence, will give you and your company the boost it needs.

Consumers will always take note of what, and who, is new on the scene, and are always investigating into the latest places to invest their money, especially if they’ve been let down by another brand. Therefore, you can make the most of your current customer base and following, and push your business forward with a relaunch and new outlook. The following are some areas to consider, tips, and ideas for those who need a helping hand with their company’s makeover, to boost their sales.

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Image source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/arrangement-bloom-blossom-bouquet-395132/

A Look At Your Branding

 It’s worth thinking about your brand, logo, and the aesthetic of your business’s identity. If you’re not a whizz when it comes to graphic design and tying a company together with colors, shapes, and images; you might want to do your research online, and also employ the help of a designer. Take a look at sites like fast.company to discover the main principles of great branding and design; you can begin thinking about how these might apply to your business.

Check out what your competitors have done, and how it works for them; it’s not about copying others, but you can boost your ideas and thought process regarding what you want to achieve. You’ll need branding that can work across all your online platforms, from your website to your social media; you’ll also want something that looks great in print so that you can hand business cards out with pride. A rebrand and relaunch will give your business something to shout about, and there’ll be an instant boost in your customer traffic and sales.

The Professional Touches

As a small business; you probably won’t have access to all the very latest in technology and services that a bigger company may have. This doesn’t mean that you can’t give your customers plenty of professionalism, and utilize what’s on the market for your size of brand. Take a look at sites like merchants.services and decide on which merchant service is the right one for you; allowing customers to pay by card at checkout, both in person and online, will be an appealing attribute to your business. If you utilize trade fairs, markets, and events where you sell your wares or services; you’ll need the ability to let consumers pay with their card, so they don’t go elsewhere due to lack of cash.

Keep a supply of business cards or flyers on you at all times; nothing says “serious business person” more than the ability to provide your contact details at a moment’s notice. Let your followers know about all your changes, and build excitement about your business and its fresh start, for plenty of future growth and success.

Improve Your Work Habits With These Tips

The workplace seems like the last place where you’d expect to find any form of habitual behavior. However, just like in our personal lives, they vary, and transcend the mere basics like washing your mug every day, reviewing the morning paperwork, or keeping your productivity up for eight hours.  Work habits range from politeness and socialization, to staying focused on a single task. And to ensure the best results, here are our tips on how to improve your work habits. Acquiring work habits can be difficult, as they didn’t have a lifetime to become automated in our daily lives. That is why we offer five simple tips that might help you out.

Small beginnings

No matter what you choose as a habit to build, you need to start small. A lot of your current habits took years to turn into a kind of automatic behavior, with most of them hardwired into your brain without you even remembering how it happened. So in order to put new habits into place with active effort, you will have to start small. For example, if you want to stay more focused on a single task, try focusing on it for five minutes. Then, after a week (or when you feel you can), extend that time to ten minutes.

Merge the habits

Say that the new habit you want to put in place is to keep a cleaner desk. You want to stop seeing piled up papers and wrappers at the end of the day. What you can do is to use every bathroom break to pick up the scraps of trash and toss them on your way there. If you want to be more sociable with coworkers, use every water break, or visit to the copier to stop and exchange a few words with someone. Tying a new habit to one of your old ones can help maintain the cycle of its occurrence.

Accountability

This goes for all those who feel like procrastination and difficulty focusing are habits that are hard to break. What you need is a sense of accountability for your work. Far-reaching deadlines are hardly going to keep you motivated on a daily basis. If possible, find a person: a colleague, or your team manager, to whom you will deliver daily reports. Knowing that your work performance depends on that end-of the day report will boost your focus. Also, keeping a to-do list, or a specific but simple checklist can go a long way. If possible, talk to the person reviewing your reports on a daily or a weekly basis, to see how well you are doing.

Organization

Organization has to be one of the most common ailments of the modern worker. From their desks and cubicles, to their offices, people tend to pile up things they don’t need. Old projects bulletin boards that they’re too busy to take down, broken down printers or piles upon piles of archives that are not a necessity right now. The habit of keeping your space clean starts with cleaning it out completely. If you have a problem giving up certain things that may be of use later, you can always look for some supercheap storage. Geelong, for example, has numerous storage offers where you can store whatever you feel could be necessary, without cluttering up your space.

Use a reward system

Lastly, employ any kind of a reward system. To truly motivate yourself, you need to know that after those ten minutes of hard focus, you will have five minutes of distractions. Or, after drinking the required goal amount of water for the day, you can treat yourself with something sweet, and so on. This part is crucial for the creation of a habit, as it hardwires your brain into linking the new behavior with some kind of gratification afterwards. Since no one gives pats on the back for achieving these small goals, a self-reward system is a perfect replacement for a positive affirmation.

Lastly

The best possible way to observe and approach habits is to see it as a kind of behavior that needs practice. It is not about a person’s laziness or inability to perform or follow through with a habit. It all comes down to how the human brain works. Most people won’t form a new habit of working 30 minutes with an unrelenting focus from day one. It takes practice and reward. Get your colleagues in on the “project” and you’ll see how fast the habit sticks.

3 Signs You Desperately Need Help With Your Business

Regardless of what kind of experience you have in the world of business, there will be times when you need a little outside assistance. There is no shame in this – it’s just part and parcel of the process of building an empire. But it is important to be able to recognise when you need help, and to have the strength of resolve to ask for that help at the right time, and from the right people. These in themselves are surprisingly tricky things to get right, and can take as much practice and devotion as any other aspect of business. The first step, of course, is to recognise when you need help in the first place.

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You Are Spending Too Much Time On Non-Essential Tasks

If you find that you are routinely spending a lot of your day to day time on non-essential tasks, then it might be worth getting someone to help you with those tasks. By non-essential here, we don’t mean that they are not important for the running of your business, but that they do not directly involve your service, or your relationship to your customer. For example, you might be running a law firm, in which case you want to spend as much time as possible actually helping your clients. In this case, you will probably want to outsource your marketing, as marketing for law firms can take up a lot of time and energy – which you could be spending on your clients.

Your Sales Are Dropping For No Apparent Reason

One of the most distressing things which can happen in business is when your sales are declining and you can’t even tell why. When this happens, it often has a way of causing a significant amount of despair, and it can be one of the quickest ways for entrepreneurs to become disillusioned with their own organizations. If this starts happening to your business, the first step is to consider getting a consultant on board. It might be that their expertise – or just the fact of having an extra pair of eyes – will help you to identify the inherent problems in your business. You can then face those problems head-on, and so get your business back on track in good time.

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You Have Had An Influx Of Customers

Or, it could be the exact opposite situation: having many customers come to you all at once. Whether it is the result of good marketing, or just chance, having a sudden influx of customers is good news, but also a potentially very stressful time for you and your business. If this happens, one of your main objectives will be to bring some people on board to help you patiently and politely deal with those extra customers. You really want to get this right – succeeding at a time like this is a sure sign of a business that will stay around for a long time yet.

Getting help with your business is often the most sensible approach to take, and there is real value in learning when to do so, and when you can cope on your own.

3 Critical Things Your Startup Business Needs!

Startup businesses are a risky thing to own as it’s the phase in a business’s life where it’s most likely to fail! The key to avoiding failure is to be properly prepared because startup businesses face many perils that can finish them without a seconds notice, so we have to get ready for these things and avoids the pitfalls that await us, but what can we do to avoid these failures from happening? Well, if you read on, you’ll find out!

Hire Website Developers

Your website is your businesses face to the world, it’s where people come to your business in order to use your services so it has to be a good one! The problem with most startup businesses is that they don’t have a proper website; they have one that the owner has made themselves, and this just isn’t going to cut it if you’ve not got professional skills! If your website is poor, it’s going to put people off your company, so how do we get around this issue? Well, it’s simple; you get professional skills in! By hiring website developers, you can be safe in the knowledge that your website is going to be unique and easy to use, so you can captivate customers and get them to buy your services.

Target Only Your Demographic

Most big businesses will only advertise to their target demographic and no one else, why? Because if you’re advertising to people who aren’t your target demographic, you’re simply not going to get anywhere with them! You need to know what the best ways are to reach out to your audience, because that’s the way that good advertising is done. Take a seat and think about who you’re mainly going to be selling to, and then base your advertisements off that. If you put your adverts in the wrong place then you’re going to be paying for nothing, so think first before you start putting out wide adverts.

Getting A Business Loan

When people start off a business, they often underestimate the costs of running it and decide to fund it themselves, however this is a mistake that often puts businesses under entirely and is therefore something you want to avoid! Websites like businesslineof.credit offer loans specifically for businesses. They can help you with paying all of the costs that come with having a business as you’re going to make a loss for for the first few years until you start getting cash in, so loans like this help you ease the pain of this by giving you a nice sum of money to sit on!

Keep in mind all of these things if you want your startup to succeed. Hire a website developer to get a professional website that will look good and will be easy to use for customers, make sure you’re advertising in the right place and not wasting your money on reaching out to people who don’t care and make sure you get a business loan to keep your financial needs satisfied! On top of loans, another good way to get funding is through lines of credit which you can read up about here.

Is ReactJS Effective For Use By Large Businesses, That Require Intricate Applications?

Why would large businesses make a use of such a simple JavaScript library as ReactJS? Well, the answer, partially, hides in the question itself. Also recent statistics are strongly on the side of React. And statistics are a tough assertion to argue with.

But where its effectiveness comes from? What are React’s pros for large businesses, that require intricate applications? Let’s find it out in this article.

Since its initial release in 2013 popularity of ReactJS has been increasing slowly but surely. Today it offers fierce competition to rival Angular from Google, and has been adopted by some of the most powerful companies in the world, including:

  • AirBnB
  • Uber
  • WhatsApp
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Atlassian
  • KISSmetrics
  • Reddit
  • Salesforce
  • Twitter
  • Yahoo

Some might argue the very fact that such huge businesses have already utilised React JS, demonstrates it is up to the task of meeting the needs of huge corporations. However, some remain sceptic and perhaps for good reason.

But the question remains straightforward; has React JS evolved efficiently, enabling it to cater for the complex and varied demands of large global businesses? And what can be done with ReactJS? Whilst small to mid-sized companies require speed and efficiency, large corporations demand scalabilityreliable support and cost effective client-side technologies.

Support and Development

For React to be ready to serve the needs of big businesses, it needs to offer reliable, evolving support, and it has managed to do precisely that. It boasts a wealth of community support that are always on hand to respond to ever changing problems.

Not only does React have a widely praised discussion forum, Stack Overflow, it also has over 550 contributors and offers dedicated Discord and IRC to stay in touch. Plus, because the main documentation remains open sourced and stored on Github, it can be constantly corrected and updated. This is a truly promising sign, suggesting React is developing into a modern, well supported library, that can remedy problems and stay up to date with the ever changing demands of large businesses.

Having said that, it is worth highlighting that community conventions are still developing, and some remain dubious that the React community is simply not large enough to offer a solution to everything. But overall, React shows promising signs of flexibility and forward thinking, making it precisely the type of application building technology big businesses want to utilise.

Quick and Easy Start Up

Another sign React is ready to meet the needs of the biggest and best, is that it can be swiftly adopted by new developers. Large businesses can lose serious cash if they have to have to spend thousands of hours training new developers, but most decent software developers will be able to get to grips with React in a short time frame.

Businesses can get employees up to speed using the variety of tools available, such as:

  • Online tutorials
  • Codecademy
  • Egghead
  • Codementor
  • Blog posts
  • Even following key contributors like Dan Abramov on Twitter can speed up the learning process.

Cutting the time it takes to bring new team members onboard, ensures maximum productivity, is cost effective and mitigates the risk of investing in new technologies. So, the fact React JS can be picked up promptly by large businesses suggests it certainly is ready to play in the big leagues.

Big Business Hurdles

Whilst it may all seem plain sailing so far, there remains some hurdles that React still needs to overcome if it wants to succeed with the biggest players. One understandable concern centres around data/state management.

React relies on a tree like structure. This means all data is managed at the upper level, which then passes down references to the lower levels. This means that when data changes, it has to call back up to the top levels to change any data. This won’t present too much of a problem in the small applications required of small to mid-sized businesses, but in the complex applications of large companies, you run the risk of writing numerous duplicate functions to manage even bite-sized amounts of data.

This presents a real obstacle to use by huge corporations. They don’t want to waste time, money and resources on an inefficient data management system. They need speed and efficiency from their data/state management systems.

Fortunately, you can make adjustments to retain control over substantial, complex applications. Redux is a state container, that acts like a database. It allows you to manage serious amounts of data on the client side, without getting too bogged down through the React components. So although justifiable concerns regarding data management systems may worry some large businesses, React offer a viable solution with the use of Redux to alleviate concerns.

The Final Verdict

Since Facebook launched React JS, it has helped build applications for some of the largest companies in the world. That alone demonstrates React is up to the task of facilitating the complex demands of BIG business. With a whole host of online resources and communities to rely on, large companies can adopt React quickly and efficiently.

Whilst there remains concerns as to whether the community is large enough to remedy all problems, and complex data management systems may hinder progress in large, dynamic applications, React is addressing those issues. Overall, it has illustrated it is certainly up to the job of meeting the demands of the biggest and boldest of global businesses.

Author – Alex Volski:

I’m a content writer at Thinkmobiles for 5 years. And I have a confession to make. I’m keen on web development and I’m going to become one very soon. That’s why I’m constantly bothering our web developers =). So if you’d like to chat about web React, Angular, JS or whatever – please contact me. Hope to hear from you soon.

4 Smart Strategies to Take Your Small Business to The Next Level

The decision about whether to expand your current business operations in different ways or to maintain the status quo is not an easy one to make. Some business owners may feel comfortable keeping things as they are and not taking unnecessary risks. If you feel that growth and expansion are in order, however, you must then determine if now is the right time to do so. Remember that your business should be well established, and trying to expand too soon can be detrimental and risky.

It is important that you develop a long-term growth strategy before you take any steps forward. Your plans should be scalable, and you should understand the financial impact that your plans will have on your budget and finances. Some people may find that they need to improve in certain areas or seek financing before ramping up production or expanding into a new market.

Remember that growth can often magnify inefficiencies that may not be bothersome or crippling right now. If you are preparing to grow, consider adopting these smart tips to enjoy the best results.

Don’t Be Afraid to Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

Substantial business growth rarely occurs if the business owner is unwilling to take a risk. Calculated risks are focused on keeping the risk level within your specific tolerance zone, but they can also help you to energize your company and give it the extra push that it needs to reach a new level of success. Remember that you took a risk launching your business initially, and you may need to take additional risks to grow it substantially.

While you need to step out of your comfort zone and embrace risk if you want your business to grow, you should also define what your acceptable level of risk or loss might be. Then, develop a strategic plan that takes that acceptable level of risk into consideration. Research each aspect of your plan thoroughly so that you are comfortable with it, and talk to your team about the risks and rewards ahead. They should be just as energized and excited about the endeavor as you are.

You should be prepared to endure some road bumps on the course ahead. Some risks will result in a loss, but a detailed plan can help you to navigate through the bumps and reach a higher level of success. With each mistake that you make during the growth process, spend time analyzing it so that you can learn from your failures and improve going forward.

Go Down the Rebranding Route

Your brand should evolve over time, and this helps your business to stay relevant in the marketplace. Rebranding can also draw consumer focus to your business, and this increased visibility and awareness can boost sales and make it easier for your business to expand into new markets. Remember that your competition may be changing over time as well, and you must reposition your brand in a strategic way with the competition in mind.

While you may want to reinvigorate your brand, you need to keep your overall business goals the same. The brand should evolve around the company, and the company should not evolve around the brand.

Analyze the growth plans that you have in mind. Determine what the brand image should be to venture into a new market or to add to your product line. Focus on rebranding that takes these factors as well as the overall identity of your business into consideration. Your new brand image can help you to more easily relate to your target audience and can help you to own different attributes that your target audience values.

Invest In Technology

As your business grows, you should embrace technological changes that are relevant to your business. Not all technology will be helpful or cost-effective, so you will need to analyze the solutions and determine which ones are best suited for your business model and growth plans.

Track new technological developments so that you can quickly and easily incorporate new technology into your business as it develops. Remember that technology can help your business to function more efficiently and cost-effectively, and this is critical when you plan to grow and expand.

Technology offers numerous other benefits for your business as well. It can be used to more easily break into new markets and to reach more customers. It can help your business to innovate new processes and operations, and it may even be used to differentiate your products and services from what the competition is offering.

Even your overall management efforts can be completed more efficiently and effectively through the use of different technological solutions. As you prepare to grow, take the time to learn more about different technologies that can be used to help you achieve your goals.

Know When to Let Go

As your business grows and expands, it becomes less feasible for you to handle all of the work that needs to be done. You will need to learn how to effectively delegate to your valued employees or to reach out to contractors for assistance. You may have to focus more on guiding the growth efforts, and this means that your team should increasingly be relied on.

However, you should only assign tasks to individuals who are dependable and who have the skills or knowledge to handle the tasks. All of your employees should feel empowered and properly trained to handle the work that you are asking them to do.

There may be some bumps in the road as you and your team take on different tasks or let go of them. Be prepared for some transition, and offer oversight and support until you feel confident in your team’s efforts. Letting go through delegation is critical if you want to achieve your business growth goals.

Conclusion

Growing your business can seem intimidating and stressful. The reality is that some things may not go quite as you plan, but you may still reach success with your efforts. Adopt these tips today to more easily navigate through this transition period.

Author bio: Ashley Wilson is a freelance writer interested in business, marketing, and tech topics. She has been known to reference Harry Potter quotes in casual conversation and enjoys baking homemade treats for her husband and their two felines, Lady and Gaga. Connect with Ashley via Twitter.