COVID-19 has disrupted the world significantly, and this has poured over inevitably into the economy and the way businesses are operating. As of September 2020, around 100,000 businesses that temporarily shut down in the United States had suddenly closed for good. This unfortunate statistic naturally can make any entrepreneur nervous about their next steps going forward. That said, expansion is still an essential part of the business. In fact, with the right strategy, this disruption can also provide an opportunity for you to find new ways to thrive in the market.
Before you dive right into your expansion plans, make you take these steps into consideration first.
Focus on your financial management first
With the disruption of the supply chain, changes that have had to be done in terms of operations, regulations, and access to the workforce, a lot of companies have been struggling to stay afloat in the financial department. That’s why it should be a no-brainer that the first focus you should have on your future-planning involves your finances and whether it is even feasible to expand. It can also inform you of any transformations that actually might be more beneficial for keeping your business alive rather than staying the course.
During this step in the process, it would be a good time to get some corporate finance consulting services. Many companies are catering specifically to small businesses to help them go through the next steps and analyze the profits, losses, and weaknesses in their current plan. By going through all of this intricate analysis, you can figure out what investments you can do and what will garner a more consistent stream of income for you.
Additionally, you’ve likely cut some costs already so a thorough consultation can help you check if you need to shift around your expenses and whether you made some wrong calls along the way or not.
Consider new avenues to pour resources into
Once you’ve assessed your finances and have figured out whether you have feasible funding, then you’ll want to see how you can balance the resources you have between recovery and expansion. Society has shifted drastically in the past year alone, with consumer habits and priorities being different today than they might have been without the pandemic.
Right now, operations are different depending on the structure of the business. Either way, the workforce has been relegated to remote work, physical locations are running on skeleton crews, and there has been a change in how enterprises reach partners or clients. So, moving forward, you’ll want to consider what is the most demanding of your resources.
2020 has shown that digital is the future, so you may want to shift more into that plane. Perhaps you need to put more investments into powering your online presence and logistics. You’ll also want to think about whether your services or products are still relevant to consumers in the same way or not, and whether your mode of catering to them is still accessible. Your expansion can focus simply on a shift in the way you reach your audience and power your operations, and an increased network will follow suit.
Assess your core demographics
Not only have the preferences of consumers or clients changed, but so have their budgets. Now is the best time to rely on the analytics tools you have at your disposal to see if you’ve still got the same core demographic and if it’s still smart to cater to that same market. You may find that you are getting a completely different set of consumers engaging with your services now, and it might be more productive to turn attention to that in terms of marketing so you can maximize the interactions that turn over into profitable transactions.
Either your demographics have changed in the sense that a new group is more profitable, or your core group remains the same but has different demands. Finding out which of the two applies to your business can really be a crucial factor that informs how you can take on your next steps toward expansion. Among the trends that have been seen statistically, it seems consumers are gearing more toward e-commerce and shopping local, as well as becoming more mindful of exactly what they are buying. This can help you angle your business in a way that makes it feel like a need in these next coming years.
Essentially, expansion is definitely possible for companies if they have a proper execution. These are just some of the core points you want to think about before pursuing that endeavor, especially during a time when a slip-up translates to a higher risk than we’ve seen in years.