Understanding your business to better serve your customers
Whether you have been running your business for over 20 years or just starting out, you cannot deny the importance of regularly reviewing your business’ performance.
Many business owners may put off reviews in fear of the actual results, but understanding why your business is performing the way it is is crucial for growth and development.
Consider these three crucial areas of your business when conducting a review:
Products and services
Think about the quality and delivery of your products and services. Do they solve a problem for your customer/client, fulfil a want or need, keep customers returning? Analysing trends in products and services will also help you to identify which products or services need to be altered or removed or if new ones are needed. Also, by regularly reviewing trends you may realise gaps in the market or opportunities you did not know existed.
Do you have a steady flow of loyal customers or are you struggling to make sales? This is a big factor in whether or not you need to change your business model. Be sure to take into consideration external factors that may influence sales, i.e., poor consumer spending in your industry, changes in technology, etc. If the type of customers you are attracting is changing also be sure to adapt to these changes appropriately, i.e., different marketing campaigns, honing in on a niche, hiring new staff to keep up with demand and so on.
Develop good financial procedures, such as visiting an accountant to receive financial statements, i.e., profit and loss, cash-flow statement and balance sheet. Financial statements analyse how your business is performing financially for a set time period. They indicate the general financial health of your business and can help you to recognise areas that require action.