With the New Year just around the corner, there’s never been a better time to start thinking about your business strategy. Whether you run a start-up or you’ve got years of experience, it is important that you act fact to get ahead of your competitors and make 2018 your year.
- Produce more content
You’ve probably heard it before, but we’re going to say it again. Content is king. High-quality content can transform your website and put your business ahead of the competition when it comes to search. If you write a weekly blog about your niche where you answer questions and post tutorials, you’ll build authority and your site will be more attractive to potential customers. So learn to write, or outsource your content marketing to a professional.
- Invest in search engine optimisation
Search engine optimisation is one of the greatest investments any small business owner can make. If you’re ranking at spot one on Google and you’re ahead of your competitors, you’ll drive much more traffic to your website than you would if you were ranking at number ten.
The best way of increasing your chances of ranking well is to produce lots of high-quality content, like we’ve mentioned above, and build links through guest blogging, outreach and directory submission. Getting the basic technical SEO right, like having meta descriptions and keywords on each of your blog posts and pages, is also an essential component to rank.
And if you don’t have the time to do it yourself, consider outsourcing to a company that offers SEO for small businesses. That way, you’ll know that your website is making progress, and you won’t have to spend hours of your day learning the fundamentals of SEO.
- Partner with other businesses
Take advantage of other businesses by partnering up to offer products and services that complement one another. If you run an event management company, for example, you could pair up with a catering company that offers delicious food. Then, every time you sell an event, you can “bundle” it together with a food package and make more money. And the same goes in reverse – the catering company can recommend your business and sell your event space and services to increase occupancy and help you stay busy throughout the year.
- Buy out a competitor
If you have the funds to do so, then consider buying out a competitor outright. That way, you won’t have to worry about competing with them, and you can use their expertise, name and reputation to grow your business. Make sure that you’re in a strong financial position, seek the advice of a business strategist, and never buy a business for the sake of it. This is a high-risk strategy that shouldn’t be taken lightly – but the pay-off can be immense.
- Launch a new product or service
If you want to keep customers engaged in your business and increase sales during quieter periods of the year, consider launching a new product or service. Not only will this increase interest and demand in your business, but it’ll add another string to your bow and will mean that you’re not only relying on one product or service to grow your business.
Alternatively, you could consider creating a complementary service that can be sold as an add-on to your offering, increasing the average spend per client and your profitability.
There you have it – some of the best ways to prepare your business for the future and get ahead of the competition. Good luck with your venture – and remember that as soon as you stand still, other businesses could be right behind you, ready to steal your clients.