Let’s face it, 2020 was a hard year for everyone. But, it was especially hard for us entrepreneurs and business owners around the globe. Of course, you don’t need me to remind you of all of the adjustments you had to make this year.
Sure, 2020 just couldn’t cut business owners a break. But, 2021 is a new year. A year of new opportunities – and potential growth.
Building your business in 2021
After the year we’ve had, building your business in the new year may seem like an impossible task. But trust me, it’s not. Heck, the word “impossible” says “I’m possible.”
OK—enough of the cheesiness.
To make 2021 your year (yes, for real this time), learn how to build up and grow your business by taking advantage of these six tips.
1. Make a list of can-do’s
Do you have a can-do attitude? You’re an entrepreneur—of course you do! Well, it’s time to use that can-do attitude to make a list. A list of can-dos, aka realistic and reachable goals for 2021, that is.
If you want to succeed in the new year, you have to start somewhere. And that “somewhere” starts by jotting down what you want to achieve.
Maybe you want to deepen your relationships with your customers. Maybe you want to increase your cash flow. Or, maybe you want to expand your marketing strategies. Whatever your hopes and dreams are for 2021, write them down as can-do’s. All of your goals in some way can help your business grow and prosper.
Although these can-do’s are somewhat vague, they are a good starting point when you’re attempting to build your business up.
2. Revise your marketing strategy
Marketing is an ever-changing element of business. One day your marketing technique is “in,” and the next … bam! You’re suddenly out of style and stuck trailing behind the latest and greatest trends.
To build your business, stay on top of marketing trends while also utilizing evergreen marketing tactics. In 2021, instead of using the same old and tired tactics that you’ve always used, expand your horizons.
Do some research to find out what’s trending in the marketing world, and brainstorm how you can use it at your business.
It’s no secret that COVID-19 has also temporarily changed the way we market to others. So, keep that in mind when you’re going through your strategies. For example, you may want to consider moving a lot of your marketing online (if you haven’t already) because of the surge in online sales during the pandemic.
3. Use downtime to make improvements
For some of you, the first few months of a new year make up your slow season. Throw a pandemic into the mix, and well … let’s just say you might have a little more time on your hands than you’re used to.
If you have any downtime in the upcoming year, take advantage of it. Use any time you have outside of your peak buying season to make improvements big and small. This could include anything from automating certain tasks (e.g., using accounting software for bookkeeping tasks) to enhancing pages on your business website.
Trust me, folks. A little bit goes a long way when it comes to making improvements to your business. And, your customers will notice, especially if it’s something they’ve been requesting for a long time.
4. Create or expand your business website
Thanks to advancements in technology, e-Commerce sales are expected to hit $6.5 trillion by 2023 (yes, trillion with a “T”). If your business is sleeping on creating or expanding an online presence, it’s time to wake up, smell the coffee, and get crackin’ on your business website.
If you want to grow your business in 2021, build and maintain an online presence. Instead of putting your business website on the backburner in 2021, do whatever you can to either A. Get it up and running or B. Spruce it up.
To enhance your business website and get it headed in the direction of perfection, consider doing the following (if you haven’t already, that is):
Add customer testimonials
Research calls-to-action (e.g., Download Your Copy Here)
SEOify your pages to help bring more people to your pages
Update your content
Ensure all of your colors are on-brand
Narrow down navigation issues
Make your website user-friendly for smartphones and other devices
5. Find out what your customers truly want and need
If you’re a veteran business owner like me, you know that you can’t grow if you don’t know what your customers want. But, do you truly know your customers’ wants and needs?
If you want your business to grow, pinpoint exactly what your customers need and want. So, how can you find out this oh-so important information? There are a few avenues you can take, including surveys (in-person and online), social media polls, and customer reviews.
Encourage customers to give you as much feedback as possible. That way, you can make improvements based on their requests and find out how they really feel about your business.
6. Focus on customer service
This final tip is an oldie but a goodie. But, it’s absolutely necessary if you want to grow your business. That’s right, you need to (drum roll, please) focus on customer service.
It’s no secret that customer service is key when it comes to attracting and retaining customers. Potential customers look at things like online reviews to get a sense of whether or not they want to buy from your business. According to Microsoft, 96% of consumers say customer service is an important factor in their choice of brand loyalty.
To boost your customer service efforts in 2021 and get more customers through your door (or through a virtual online store door), you can:
Create memorable experiences for your customers
Nip problems in the bud as soon as possible
Personalize shopping experiences
Reward loyal customers
Listen to customer concerns
Ask customers for feedback (think back to tip #5)
Customer service goes a long way in business. So, be sure to use it to your advantage and improve your efforts where you can to give customers the best possible experience.
By Mike Kappel