Small businesses are a major driver of innovation and progress in the US economy. In fact, there are approximately 28 million small businesses in the US alone, making up 44% of U.S. economic activity.
But despite their strides toward innovation, small businesses are still struggling with how fast markets and consumer demands are changing. Big companies often have more resources to catch up with trends and create solutions compared to small businesses.
The good news is that there are many different strategies you can use to help mitigate those struggles to give your business room to grow.
Plan for the future, prepare for the worst
We currently live in an age of digital transformation, which means an age of disruption for many industries. Automation has provided many benefits to businesses. For instance, organizations who used marketing automation saw a revenue increase of 10% in six months.
However, these kinds of changes can also cause small businesses to fall behind if they don’t have the means to keep up. That said, it’s important to plan ahead for the future and ask your business what’s next.
But it’s also important to prepare for the “what ifs.” You can’t count on the status quo to continue or you risk being left behind.
Embrace new changes
There are big changes happening in the market and in consumer demand right now. But instead of looking at those changes as major challenges, consider embracing the disruption they’re causing in your business.
Look for new ways to improve your services and expand your capabilities like changing your business model to go after a new goal. It can be scary to scrap a business model for a fresh approach. But if you plan accordingly and use your business’s size to be agile, you can take your small business to new heights.
Embracing new changes doesn’t have to mean changing your business model, though. You can embrace new, smaller changes that have just as big an impact.
One major change many small businesses are making is allowing their employees to work remotely. This is because two-thirds of managers agree that employees who work remotely actually increase their overall productivity and brings more employee satisfaction into a job performance. With 57% of organizations viewing employee retention as a problem, whatever moves you can make to keep a productive employee in place should be considered. And with so many businesses working digitally nowadays, partially remote work has become a viable option.
Secure and analyze your data
One dangerous disruption that the digital revolution has caused is an influx of data breaches and cyber threats. Since the Equifax data breach, clients have been on their toes and more suspicious of the companies they work with.
Cyber threats can not only drain your business’s assets but they can also keep your clients from trusting you again. Be sure to protect your resources by updating virus software and maintaining IT security at all costs.
When your data is secure, you can use it to your advantage by leveraging it to gain insight on what’s working for your business and what isn’t. It’s worth investing in technology that can benefit your clients and reduce friction in your business.
There are a lot of changes taking place in the economy, but that just means consumers are more open than ever to try new things when you’re open to providing better service. Don’t be afraid of disruption. Instead, let disruption work for you.
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