▷ I started my business, how can I sustain my business?

Starting a business is only the first step in the long journey you will take as an entrepreneur. Once the enthusiasm wears off, you’ll find that starting a business is the easiest part of your journey, but making it sustainable is another story…

In today’s global economy, about two-thirds of businesses survive the first two years, half of all businesses survive until five years, and only one-third manage to thrive until 10 years or more.

In France, a study published by INSEE reveals that five years after their creation, 67% of companies are still active, compared to 53% of traditional sole proprietorships (excluding the autoentrepreneur regime). Societies are therefore more sustainable than sole proprietorships.

So how do you sustain a business?

Invest in your team

In addition to quality products and services as well as strategic decisions, your employees are at the origin of the development of your company. Without their dedication and focus on results, your business might have succumbed to failure within the first two years.

To keep growing, you need to invest in your team, which is essentially the heart of your business. Award-winning and professionally engaged associates have helped retain existing customers and will strive to attract new ones. As they speak highly of your business throughout the community, they suffer as word-of-mouth marketing in your favor.

Set revenue and profitability goals

For a business to be successful, it must earn enough money to sustain its operations and make a profit that can be reinvested for future growth. Determine how much your business needs to bring in on a monthly, quarterly and annual basis, in terms of revenue, to be successful by considering your business costs including:

  • Supply;
  • The making ;
  • The staff ;
  • The capital.

This is also the perfect time to review your pricing structure by asking yourself the right questions:

  • Are your products priced appropriately?
  • How many (products/offers) will you need to sell in a given period to reach your revenue and profitability goals?

Once these elements are well defined, you will know exactly what you need to do to keep your business running and thriving.

Analyze the competition

To succeed, you must not be afraid to study and learn from your competitors. They may be doing something well chosen that you can implement in your business to make more money. How you analyze the competition varies from industry to industry.

If you own a restaurant, for example, you might just be able to dine at your competitors’ restaurants, ask other customers what they think, and get information that way.

Take advantage of an experienced network or entrepreneur

Spend time connecting face-to-face with people in your industry who could become useful as potential partners, suppliers, advisors or customers, and at the same time build brand awareness quickly. The woven links make it possible to have a network of suppliers, a base of customers and to benefit from notoriety quickly.

According to a study published by INSEE, companies that benefit from a network or an experienced entrepreneur start their take-off better, avoid their size. 55% of dynamic entrepreneurs have been helped by professional relations (customers, suppliers, former employer) compared to 34% of other still active business leaders. The help of a former employer is the most decisive.

At the same time, it is also important to develop your presence on social networks in order to reach potential customers in your target market, especially if you will succeed in the online business. LinkedIn and Instagram are great ways to stay on top with new, existing, and potential customers. It also allows you to find other people in your industry and maintain awareness of your business.

Train yourself

When running your business, always control your ego and avoid thinking that you have it all, that you have nothing more to learn. Businesses, like people, are never static. We are constantly evolving.

So be thirsty to learn, gain knowledge and learn from others. Adapt, transition in this ever-changing world, and do it with an innovative mindset. Be curious and observant. Drive steady growth by implementing innovative ideas that can set you apart from your competitors. The brain is unlimited in its capacity for knowledge.

try to stay ahead of your market.

To learn how to design a sustainable business idea, take a look at this module in our training Designing and promoting a digital training offer.

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