Having been in business for a while, there may be certain signs indicating that now is the time to expand. While there are several factors to consider before you do, an expansion will bolster your profits, enhance your reputation, and give you the scope to look into new business ideas.
The following are some of the indicators that suggest your business is ready for expansion.
You are running out of space
More space doesn’t necessarily equate with success – you may be operating out of small premises, to begin with – but if you have taken on more staff to help you run the business, increased operations on the floor and office level, and have customers struggling to move through your increasing stock levels, then you are probably doing something right. Do everybody a favor then and consider bigger premises to match your expanding venture, or consider renovating your current base to accommodate everything you need.
You have a growing customer base
Once your customer base begins to grow, it is clear you have something worth selling. In such a case, it is time to make room to sell more, by moving to larger premises or opening up a second base of operations to meet the demand for your product. The latter is particularly true if you have customers visiting from afar to see what you have to offer, or if the following point on this list has become relevant to your business.
Overseas customers are taking an interest
If you’re getting a lot of interest from the consumer market abroad, now may be the time to spread your business wings internationally. You could open up a new base abroad, although it may be simpler to target your international customers from your online store (should you have one). In either case, it is advisable to hire an international translation company (for manufacturing companies) to ensure you get the product manuals and marketing right, and carry out sufficient research to gain an understanding of a specific company’s trading and cultural laws to ensure you don’t get into any legal issues.
You have seen a rise in profits
We aren’t talking about a surge in profits, as that could be due to a temporary or seasonal factor. Christmas, for example, is a prime time for profits to rise in retail or online stores, as consumers increase their spending in line with the season. However, if you have seen your profits steadily rise over the number of years you have been in business, and you have sufficient funds to contemplate an expansion without running at too great a loss, then making the move to expand could be a wise financial decision, whether that’s internally with staffing and technology, or externally with new business premises.
Your industry is in demand
We are living in rocky times, and some industries have become irrelevant. This is partly because of a change in technologies (lament the loss of the typewriter), as well as the rise of online shopping that has stopped many retail operations over the last few years. However, if your industry is on the rise, and isn’t in danger of disappearing anytime soon, then it makes sense to consider an expansion when you have the required funding to do so.
You need to hire new employees
You know you need to hire new employees when your current staff are flagging with the workload demands placed upon them, or you are turning away potential business opportunities and customers because you don’t have the staffing to deal with them. As your business grows, so must the team around you, so whether you expand internally or externally with a second base of operations, you need to focus on the hiring process yet again.
You want to expand your vision
When your business began, you should have detailed a business plan to match your vision. Times change, however, and you may have thought up new ideas or seen new opportunities to help your business grow. In line with these changes in your vision, you may need to expand your business to help you implement them, be that hiring new staff, changing premises, or buying extra tech to help you fulfill your plans.
It isn’t right for every business to expand. If profits aren’t coming in, and there are too many risks involved to consider an expansion as a viable idea, then it’s wiser to wait until you are in a better position to do so. On the other hand, if one or more of the indicators above are relevant to your business, then it’s time to talk to the people who matter to take your business forward to the next level.