Stats have shown that around 20% of small businesses fail within their first year of opening up. However, this number rises as the years go on, with only 50% of businesses reaching the five-year mark. In fact, by the tenth year, only 30 percent of businesses would have survived to reach the decade milestone.
Despite these stats, more and more people are determined to try their hand at starting their own business. In fact, the U.S has seen record-high numbers of paperwork by entrepreneurs who are filing for new businesses. In this article, we will look at five steps that are necessary for a successful business.
1. Monitor Your Competitors
While it is essential to be unique and build your own brand image, it can be helpful to monitor your competitors. Look at companies that are successfully building and marketing themselves, and try to draw inspiration for your own business.
Learn from their mistakes, and try to find ways to improve on their already winning strategies. This will help you avoid having to start from scratch and will remove a lot of the guesswork that you might find yourself doing at the beginning.
2. Be Mindful of Your Registered Agent
United States law requires companies to designate and maintain a registered agent. The registered agent is the middleman between the company and the state government. The business can appoint anyone to serve as its registered agent.
The role can be assumed by the business owner themselves or given to any individual (age restrictions differ according to state), an attorney, a CPA, or a company that specializes in business formation. Ultimately it doesn’t matter who is designated as the agent – they simply need to be available to receive communications during regular business hours, as they can be delivered at any time therein.
However, it is advised that entrepreneurs employ agents and not fulfill the role themselves. Should you ever find yourself in a situation where you are unhappy with your agent, it is possible to change registered agents – there are some fees involved, but these are generally manageable in most states.
3. Use Failure as a Tool
As a new business, challenges are inevitable. In order to succeed, it is vital that you are able to build up grit and preserve through the tough times. It might be easy to give up, but you will miss out on the rewards that will come from pushing through.
Failure should be seen as a stepping stone to success and should be used as a motivation to try harder. Instead of throwing in the towel, ask yourself, “What can I learn from this?” Use the information that you gather from your failure as data to create a winning formula.
Perseverance is key because there will always be new obstacles; overcoming them will only make your business stronger. It is often said that “failure is only failure if you do not learn from it,” so make notes and put measures in place to avoid having to deal with the same issues twice.
4. Keep Up With Technology and Trends
In a digital world, it is imperative that businesses keep up with the latest trends in technology as customers want innovation.
With so many businesses out there, it can be easy to get lost in the crowd and overshadowed by competitors that are keeping up and staying ahead of what’s new and exciting. Apart from being appealing to customers, new technology generally means more efficiency. So by incorporating the latest digital business tools, you can work smarter and not harder.
5. Always Maintain Good Customer Service
A happy customer is often a return customer, so it is important that your customers are satisfied with the quality of goods and/or services that they have been provided with. Whilst there is always room for human error, it is important to take accountability and try your best to rectify a situation if you do have an unhappy customer.
Communication is a vital component if you are having an issue. Communicate any problems with your customer and try to find a solution together; you may be surprised at how understanding a consumer can be when you are transparent with them.