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Are you wondering how to grow a business in 2024? All small business owners need a solid growth strategy to generate more revenue, build brand awareness and take things to the next level. Here are 10 tips on how to grow your small business in 2024.
1. Understand your audience
In today’s business landscape, understanding your audience has never been more important. If you don’t know what your customers want, it’s extremely difficult to make them happy. And at the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about – making customers happy and building brand loyalty. So, how exactly do you learn what your customers want?
Any good growth strategy in 2024 is going to rely on data to be truly successful. The great thing is, there are several ways to access quality data. You can use website tools like Google Analytics to learn more about where your customers come from and how they interact with your website. You can employ a marketing company to conduct extensive research into customer behaviour. You can even ask your existing customers by using email surveys or social media polls.
Put together a profile of who your customers are, what they want, and how best to reach them. Armed with this knowledge, you’ll have a better idea of how to expand your business.
2. Invest in technology
Business technology is a very broad and far-reaching term, covering everything from how you run your daily operations to how you keep track of your accounts. Perhaps a good starting point is to look at your payment systems. Are you making it easy for your customers to make a purchase? If not, a system like Square Payments is a smart investment, because it allows you to accept all types of payments including in-person, remote and over the phone.
You can go a step further by considering a comprehensive point-of-sale system such as Square POS. This allows you to not just accept payments, but manage your entire inventory, sync with an online store and also access powerful analytics to inform your business decisions.
Other types of technology to consider are a CRM for improved customer relationship management and sales processes, a website upgrade, and other types of automation technology to improve efficiency and accuracy.
3. Improve the user experience on your website
When building a website, it’s all about the customer experience. This applies to all websites, but it’s even more crucial if you offer an eCommerce service. For example, let’s say you’ve invested in marketing to drive more leads to your website. Those leads aren’t going to become sales if your website is difficult to navigate, or your products are hard to find. Other aspects of eCommerce and website design to consider are how easy the checkout process is, and whether customers can easily access the information they need.
One way to improve your website is to use a service such as Square Online. The benefit is, you get all the tools necessary to quickly and easily create an online store that customers love. You don’t need costly web developers, and you can be selling in no time. Plus, it’s been developed with the customer experience in mind, so you’ll have more chance of converting leads to sales.
4. Create a customer loyalty program
We spoke earlier about knowing your customers and what they want. Well, nearly all customers love a loyalty program that benefits them. Loyalty programs come in all shapes and sizes. It might be a points-based system where customers earn points on each purchase and can trade those points in for benefits. It could be a system where registered customers receive a percentage discount on every purchase. Even something as simple as you see at your local café, where every 8th coffee is free.
If you want to increase repeat business and build brand loyalty, consider a tool such as Square Loyalty, which makes it easy for you to implement a loyalty program that keeps your customers coming back for more.
5. Provide great customer service
Want to know how to grow a small business? If all else fails, and you don’t have the money to invest in technology or marketing, one growth strategy is always free. Focus on providing great customer service! It costs nothing to greet customers with a smile, be accommodating when answering questions, or respond quickly to online enquiries.
The fact is, when you provide great customer service, people take notice. They’re also likely to come back again, tell their friends, or even become an ambassador for you on social media without you even asking.
6. Use social media
In the modern world, social media is an extremely powerful tool and gives you a great insight into how to grow your business. Have you ever searched for a business online and found they don’t even have a traditional website, just a Facebook page? We’re not suggesting you do away with your website, but this just illustrates the fact that many business owners feel it’s more important to be social media before developing a proper website.
Social media can be used to connect with customers, build brand loyalty, and of course, market your business. Creating great social media content and being as interactive as possible is a great way to amass a healthy following on social media. For more detailed information on how to use social media for business growth, check out this useful social media marketing guide.
7. Build a sales funnel
If you haven’t heard of a sales funnel before, now is the time to start learning. A sales funnel basically describes the journey your customers take on their way to making a purchase. By building your sales funnel, you can help guide and nurture leads more efficiently towards a sale.
The beauty of a sales funnel is that many steps can be automated, especially if you invest in CRM software. For example, a sales funnel may start with a customer seeing a Google ad. When they click on that ad, they’re taken to a relevant, informative webpage that encourages them to take a certain action. You might ask them to sign up to an email list, and then your system kicks in by automatically emailing them a special deal. The email includes links to the product page, with a discount already applied, and makes it easy for the customer to make a purchase.
This is a basic example, and your sales funnel may look very different, but by using tried and tested processes and automation, you can increase your revenue quickly.
8. Work with the right people
Another thing to consider as your business expands is getting the right people to work alongside you. This might be new staff, contractors, freelancers, even companies you hire for certain tasks. Investing time and effort into surrounding yourself with the right people is paramount. The process of hiring and firing is laborious and costly, so you want to avoid regular staff turnover.
In addition to choosing great staff, the same discretion should be applied to choosing mentors and others you seek advice from.
9. Focus on your strengths
Many small businesses make the mistake of trying to be everything to everyone. This often manifests in offering too many services or selling too many products. Often, a better growth strategy is to focus on quality rather than quantity. Having goals to expand your business is fine, but make sure you set a solid foundation first.
You’ll have more chance of being noticed in a busy marketplace if there are one or two things you do really well, rather than providing 5 or 6 average services. Focus on what you’re really good at, and develop yourself as an authority in that field before trying to offer new services.
10. Utilise events to grow your customer base
Finally, it’s an older growth strategy but one that never goes out of style. Networking and events are two ways to grow your brand recognition, your authority in a field, and indeed, your customer base. You can host events yourself as a way of generating interest in your brand. Webinars and other online events are a cost-effective way to build your email marketing list.
Alternatively, look for relevant networking events you can attend yourself. These are usually a great way to make connections, discover opportunities, and even just be inspired by the success of others.