When you first began building your business, you likely put a lot of research into getting everything as it should be. Financial advice, forums, friends who are entrepreneurs, social media, Youtube videos, blogs: the information is out there for the taking and you took it, to help you sow the seeds for your very own empire just like the other 80 companies born every hour in the UK, according to recent statistics.
Lots of sleepless nights have been had, and plenty of sacrifices have been made to get your business off the ground. According to statistics from last year, more than 50% of new businesses fail in the first four years, so it takes a lot of effort and passion to succeed in this extremely competitive world.
It is going well but, where do you go from here? Naturally you want to grow your business, but how do you do that? There isn’t always a natural progression and there can be several growing pains, obstacles and issues in the way of taking everything up a level.
Luckily, there are many, many possibilities for you and there is actually a wealth of opportunity for a business like yours. The hard bit was stepping out of the rat race and into this exciting entrepreneurial pace of life.
To help you get started, here are several innovative ways to expand your business:
1. Using Self Storage
All businesses need space, even if they are based online. The space is needed for stock, paperwork or for temporary equipment. This kind of space is hard to find at a reasonable cost.
Space for businesses often comes at a premium either through office or warehouse space costing the earth or through using all of your living space for work which ends up essentially costing you your home. With either option you may struggle to get the extra space to expand for one reason or another.
Without relocating your business or tying yourself into a hefty long-term lease, you might feel stuck for options, but there is an option for you and that is self storage. It is so cost effective and easy, allowing you to expand your business without impacting your bottom line.
Key benefits are:-
- Security – probably more than you have at home or in your office, because self storage facilities know that customers need to trust their lockups are safe.
- Flexibility – terms of lease are commonly flexible so you can stay longer if you need to, or negotiate a short lease upfront.
- Affordability – Self storage facilities know there is big competition so will always keep their prices competitive.
- The Space You Need – Whether you need a locker the size of a football pitch or the size of a gym locker, you will be able to find a facility to offer it.
- Delivery Help – Many facilities offer 24 hour reception services who will take a delivery for you if you need.
Self storage could be the perfect way to expand without the risk.
Is your business the perfect franchise model? If you can make the right concept, then this could be the ideal way to expand your business. You might have to do work on the systems you have in place and the way the business model works as a franchise, but this could be a way for you to grow internationally if you think about exactly how you’re going to do it really carefully. This franchising explained in 3 minutes video on You Tube is a great introduction if you are new to franchising.
3. Invoice Discounting
Invoice discounting is an innovative way to expand your business in the way of increasing cash flow you need in order to grow. A lot of people don’t really understand the term too well, but the concept is actually very simple. You are able to borrow money short term against the money owed to you with your invoices which are not yet paid. It is like borrowing money now against the money that will be coming in on your next wage-slip. Clearly there are risks involved, like there is with any borrowing and it is not free. However invoice discounting is a different way to lend money that you need to expand, and a way that could work well for your particular business.
Licensing a product can be a very easy way to get more money in for expansion whilst potentially getting your name out there. You can be receiving money upfront from the continued use of your product, software,system or name brand if it is something people want to use. Licensing can also lower risk and cost compared to going it alone. This quick 5 minute video on how to license an idea is a great place to start if you are new to licensing.
5. Become Diverse
It is so easy to be so in love with your business that you never stop to look at the bigger picture and consider other ways to make money. Could you talk about your business as a speaker at events? Could you stock products from other businesses? Could you sell additional products or services? Could you sell through different means such as social media or via an online shop? You have to be diverse in today’s competitive world, and it may well be diversity is your key to expansion.
“Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement and success have no meaning” – Benjamin Franklin
You know your business inside out and only you know exactly which route to expansion is right for you. Just remember to do your research and look everywhere for information on your potential choices for growth, because an educated decision is an informed decision and with something this important, knowledge is key!