Are you dreaming big and want to take your startup business to the heights of success? It is easy to start a business with stars in your eyes, but running the business and making it successful is not as easy. Launching a startup, of course, has its fair share of struggles and challenges. Hundreds and thousands of startups are started daily, but only a handful make it big and transform themselves into successful businesses.
The good news is that anyone can start a business, but the bad news is that starting a business that succeeds and continues to flourish isn’t easy.
For a small business, the 3 golden rules of success are Research, Research, and Research.
Small businesses must realize that they cannot copy another’s formula to succeed; success follows the companies that analyze the market, identify opportunities, and recognize their purpose.
To turn your startup into a successful business, you must be prepared to gain business knowledge and skills. You need to be fully committed to your business ventures. You have to put your heart and soul into what you’re doing and truly believe in your product/service. Also, be prepared to work long hours to get all the tasks done. When you start a business, you have to have a whole different mindset than an employee does. You not only need to have business ideas but should also be capable of executing them.
Here are the 5 key stages in launching a startup, and how you can aim for success in each one of them:
Stage 1: Inception
The first stage of any business is inception; in this stage, the business has been created to sell a product or service. A startup starts small; the entrepreneur performs most tasks themselves and hires a few crucial employees.
At this stage, the biggest challenges for every new business are:
- To ask themselves whether their product fills a need in the market and will it yield any profits?
- Who is our Target audience?
- Who are our competitors?
The main problem of the business here is obtaining and winning customers. You only follow one rule here; the customer is right. Customers are the superpower behind your startup’s success. Winning customer trust is one of the most challenging things businesses are facing.
Business, in general, is risky and stressful, but the risk is at the peak in this stage. Delivering a product that meets a specific customer need like no other product can is not as easy as it sounds. Don’t run for customers, try to keep them through your product quality, and customer service. To see a real-life example of excellent customer service, check out Carpet Cleaning London.
Stage 2: Hiring Staff
For any early-stage startup, finding a team is one thing, but finding a team that shares your passion is another. Hiring the staff can be tricky as each selection is a potential make or break choice. Startups need to identify the right talent because only a group of right people will keep a startup running smoothly and with success in a competitive business market.
Most of the startups fail either because there is a lack of demand in the market for their products/services or because they fail to meet the ever-changing market demands. This is why a startup needs a highly motivated, hardworking, and dedicated team that can take a business to the next level.
To make your business grow, certain skills are essential, and you should know what those skills are to be successful.
Stage 3: Funding
Sourcing enough money for your new venture is one of the most challenging aspects of business development. It is a daunting task to fund your business as without making money, it’s hard to spend money. A startup will not survive on its vision alone; you need money to undertake business functions such as hiring employees, manufacturing, sales & marketing, and research and development, among others.
Funding is doubly challenging for new businesses because, for one, they have to secure the capital to finance their business, and secondly, they have to learn to manage the finances correctly. New businesses don’t understand cash flow, budgeting, and estimation. Therefore, there is a chance they will run out of money without proper planning.
It is crucial to find out how much money your business will require. New businesses must also do budgeting; entrepreneurs should hire skilled finance managers in case they are not proficient in finance themselves.
Stage 4: Expansion
The expansion stage is when the company takes product development and customer development to the next level. At this stage, you have managed to do your business firmly establish its presence in the industry. Businesses in this stage often see rapid growth in both revenue and cash flow but do not get too comfortable. Your focus needs to be on improvement and productivity.
Stage 5: Maturity/Exit
When businesses reach the maturity stage, they are dominating the markets and have stable profits. The business is booming, and the company sees steady return on investment every year. The question at this point is to start asking yourself whether:
- Your business sustain sustainable future growth?
- Are there any further opportunities for growth?
When the company is generating stable revenues from its existing products, then it’s time to research new avenues of growth. A stagnant company does not survive for long, even if it’s successful.
At this stage, success depends on taking your business to the next level by horizontal or vertical expansion; companies can add new products to their product line, or they can start selling their product in new markets.
Additionally, entrepreneurs may even sell their business to other companies at a profit. For instance, WhatsApp started as a startup; upon its success, it was offered a buyout deal by Facebook, which is accepted. Many entrepreneurs sell their startups to big companies so they can focus on other ventures. In contrast, others sell the rights while remaining part of the project to enjoy the resources bigger companies have to offer.
Developing a startup is not everyone’s cup of tea, making your business venture a success requires blood, sweat, and tears. However, there is nothing more fulfilling than starting and succeeding at an enterprise that is close to your heart!
Whether your business is a success or a failure depends on your ability to adapt to its changing life cycles. If startups want to succeed, they need to be resilient and determined. Most importantly, they need to research ad plan ahead to tackle any challenges that may arise.
Do you have a business idea that you want to make a reality? Let us know!
- 10 Tools of Profitable Revenue Growth
- Understanding the Kinds of Capital for Your Business
- Manufacturing Startup Guide: 4 Essentials For Success
- Ready-made eCommerce solutions: Boon for Small Businesses.
- Beating the Odds to Land a Startup Opportunity