Are you struggling to keep your business afloat?
The COVID-19 pandemic has taken most businesses to the cleaners, literally. Although stay-at-home orders that were in place are being lifted, the vast majority of businesses are struggling to resume normal operations.
There’s good news, though. Just because your business is struggling doesn’t mean it’s on its way to closure. There are effective steps you can take to restart the engine of your business and make the sales numbers start trending upwards.
In this article, we’re sharing a revival playbook for struggling businesses. Continue reading to learn what you can do to boost your company.
Identify Why Your Business Is Struggling
Turning around a struggling company is akin to what physicians do with their patients. When you’re ill and you go to your primary care physician, the first step is a diagnosis, right?
Similarly, the first step to turning around a struggling company is to identify why it is struggling.
During these coronavirus times, it’s easy to place blame on the pandemic. However, it’s possible that your business was struggling long before the virus struck at the start of 2020.
If that’s the case, what’s the reason behind the struggle?
There are a number of potential reasons. One, it could be that competition in the market is too fierce. This would be the case if there are several dominant companies offering the same product or service in your market.
Two, poor product quality. If your product doesn’t satisfy the needs of your customers, it’s unlikely that they’ll keep buying it. Your sales will slump as a result. Running a customer survey is an ideal way to establish whether your product is to blame.
Three, bad customer experience. You see, offering a superior product alone isn’t enough to keep customers back. If customer service is poor and your business has a bad reputation, customers will walk away.
Four, lack of innovation. Is your business still doing things the old way? Did you just say you don’t even have a business website? If you haven’t digitized your business, there’s a good chance it’s the reason you’re struggling.
Or, did a major catastrophe bring your business to its knees? If you’re in food retail, for instance, a fire can raze down your business and cripple your operations.
When you know what’s ailing your business, it’s easier to turn it around.
Cut Back Your Costs
When your business is struggling, one of the first things to take a hit is your revenues. And the more your revenues fall, the closer they get to your costs.
In business, your revenues should never be lower than your costs. This would mean you’re operating at a loss, a breaking point you don’t want your company to be in.
The big question is: how do you stop this from happening?
There are only two ways: get the revenue up again (while keeping costs constant), or reduce your costs.
If the business is struggling, the first option is off the table. Reducing your costs is the path with the least resistance.
There are a number of steps you can take to reduce your costs, including laying off a couple of employees, harnessing virtual technology, closing a couple of stores (if you’re a brick and mortar business), and reducing production costs.
Keep in mind, though, that reducing costs is a short-term measure. If your business continues struggling and revenues keep declining, there’s only so much cost-cutting you can do before revenues fall below your costs.
Clean Up Your Business’s Reputation
If one of the reasons your business is struggling is a poor reputation in the market, you have to invest in a clean-up campaign.
In the Digital Age, having a bad reputation certainly means your online reviews and comments are wanting. Hiring a digital reputation management company is a step in the right direction.
These professionals have what it takes to help your business rebuild a positive reputation on the web. This will have a direct impact on your sales, especially considering that the vast majority of consumers now check a business’s reputation before making a purchase decision.
Sharpen Your Marketing Strategy
Every business needs to invest in marketing.
However, marketing strategies aren’t created equal. Your competitors are ahead of you probably because they’re better at marketing their products and services.
If it’s been a long time since you changed your marketing strategy, now is the best time to perform an audit and draw a better strategy. This is especially the case if you haven’t embraced digital marketing.
If your business doesn’t have a website, now is the time to take it online. If you already have a website, a redesign is long overdue.
Don’t forget to capitalize on the power of social media. Create business accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and other platforms that suit your business. It won’t take long before your digital marketing strategy starts to yield fruit.
Are Your Employees Holding You Back?
Laying off some employees will have a significant impact on your costs, but you might need to do more when your task is to turn around a struggling business.
It’s possible that your employees are the weak link. Perhaps most of them aren’t up to the task or they’re not as motivated and productive as they should be.
You’re not going to boost your struggling business alone. You need a dedicated team by your side. Accordingly, you might need to invest in employee training to enhance their occupational skills, as well as hire new, more qualified employees.
There’s a Silver Lining for Struggling Businesses
Even before 2020, the number of struggling businesses in the United States was quite high. If yours is among these businesses, don’t give up. As demonstrated above, there are steps you can take to turn things around and run a wildly profitable company.
All the best and keep reading our blog for more business tips and insights.