What plans do you have for the future of your business? Surely, you’ve thought long and hard about the day when you’d eventually be able to expand your operations. This may seem far off for some, while others feel the time is now. If you’re currently in the phase of desiring expansion, then it’s necessary to evaluate your situation beforehand. With that said, here are a few questions you should try answering first.
Is Your Decisions Based On Data?
I have come across a lot of small business owners that say they’re ready to expand their operations, not because they had stats and data to back up their desire, but because they simply wanted it. Working off gut feeling alone isn’t going to ensure the success of your company’s growth. Be realistic about expansion – ask yourself whether opening a new location will poach sales from your current location and whether there’s even a market in the area you’re looking to expand to.
How Well is Your Current Location Doing?
It doesn’t make much sense to open up another store if your current shop isn’t doing too well. Thinking that expansion will save your business is naïve and risky. If you were to consult with a business development expert, they’d tell you to first look at your current business. Analyzing your past data can be very telling of the future.
Do You Have a System in Place?
How easy it will it be to give someone else the reigns to run your second location? Major franchises have successfully created systems that others can follow. You need a procedural manual that outlines how operations should be ran. Processes and systems are essential for any growing business to succeed.
What Will You Do if it Flops?
Entrepreneurs tend to have very high expectations, which can sometimes be mistaken for optimism. Reality is these high expectations can be very unrealistic. With that said, it’s highly recommended that you have a backup plan just in case. Brainstorm a little to see what the worst-case scenarios could be and what you will do about them. Make sure you can bounce back from any pitfalls your company witnesses during an expansion.
Hugh Benjamin is an Internet marketing expert that works with small businesses throughout the world. Over the past decade, he has helped various organizations develop, sustain and expand their operations. He offers business consulting services, as well as SEO, content marketing, Web design, online reputation management, PPC and social media marketing.