What could be more exciting than expanding your small business? At least, that’s what your mindset is before you actually start that expansion. When you’re starting your business, you’re probably dreaming of expanding it across the world. But all that dreaming can make you forget what a stress this expansion can be!
Here are some tips for the business owner who is expanding their business for the first time.
Rapid expansion rarely does anyone much good. The term itself sounds pretty great – rapid expansion – but don’t expand quicker than your business can handle. Admittedly, it’s unlikely that your small business is going to be expanding too widely in a short amount of time. (Unless you’ve been really fortunate with your profits!) Small businesses will usually have no choice but to expand slowly.
But the fact is that expanding slowly can be the key to success. After all, expansion is a risk. You don’t know how you’re going to perform in new territory. If your expansion is limited, then if there’s a failure it won’t be too damaging. But let’s say expand very quickly, going to several territories at once. If disaster strikes all of these territories, then you’re going to have wasted a larger amount of capital.
Make sure your foundations are solid
Don’t go expanding if the core of your business isn’t running optimally! You probably have a good idea in your head about how you wanted your initial base of operations to be performing. Is the business framework producing the results you want? Are your employees happy? Are you making the profits you were expecting?
Make sure everything is stable before you start expanding to new cities, states, or even countries. If business here isn’t as strong as you expected, then there are fundamental problems at play. If you expand now, you could just be spreading those mistakes on a wide scale.
Get help if you need it
If you don’t have much experience with business expansion, then I wouldn’t recommend doing this without help. This is an extremely complex thing you’re about to do. It’s probably going to be the biggest step your company has ever taken. Even if it costs to get extra assistance, it will probably be worth the investment. Doing this as perfectly as you can is your priority right now.
This expansion is going to complicate the logistics of your business tremendously. Consider getting assistance from a company like SSI Schaefer to ensure things go smoothly.
Research your new territory thoroughly
One of the most common mistakes made during expansion is a lack of research. If you want to avoid failure in a new territory, you need to work out whether that territory is even right for you. Remember everything you had to do for your initial base? You had to find the right employees. You had to get a bunch of new equipment. You had to learn how to do business in your specific location as you went along.
You will now need to do all of that again in a new territory! So you need to know beforehand if it’s all achievable. For example, can you find the right talent in that new location? Again, get help if you need it. Companies like Recruiter can help with global recruitment.