5 mistakes start-up Businesses Make
Amongst other mistakes, here are 5 popular mistakes I have noticed most start ups and small businesses make. By small businesses and startups, I mean people going into personal businesses like selling clothes, accessories, hair, hair products, weight loss products, fashion business, online sales, small scale productions, packaging and repackaging business and so on.
1. Not keeping records
Most small businesses don’t keep records. Records of cost of production, cost of purchases, cost of logistics, selling prices, expected profit, cost of promoting business, data used for online promotion etc. Basically your profit and loss account and your daily purchases and sales book. Aside from keeping you focused on the realities of the business, these books help you know which direction your business is heading, rather than waiting till you suddenly realize you have spent your capital while trying to accommodate friends in your sales. It also helps you predict the future of your business and let’s you know when you need to expand the business or cut your losses. Lastly, these records could also be used to negotiate loans with banks in case you want to expand the business.
2. Thinking you can do it all alone
From my time analysis (read the text), going into business alone is a recipe for failure. As a business person, you would have noticed that often times your problem is TIME. Ask any other business person, sales, marketing, manufacturing or distribution, it is often same complaint, “I wish I can have more than 24hrs in a day”. The simple solution to that is getting more hands. As a business person, you would realize, your job is divided into two, things you have to do yourself and things people can help you to do. So why not hire someone to assist you. You might say your business is not big enough to hire someone, trust me when you hire someone, your profit would double because you will have more hours on your hand to double your revenue.
3. Thinking you can scheme on price
Especially people advertising on Social media, you post products without adding the price. Do you know that the decision to buy is often a split second decision? Most potential buyers, won’t press to find out the price, once it is not stated, they just move on. I have had some business owner say, not disclosing the price is so that they can scheme customers and negotiate different prices, sorry it doesn’t work that way. It is better you state the price then add “negotiable”, it gives the potential buyer an idea of what s/he is walking into. Always quote a price on your product, you can even range it e.g. price from #5000, that simple.
4. Refusing to spend on adverts
Advertising is as important as starting a business. The truth is advertising on your WhatsApp status can only guarantee less than 5% of the sales you would need to breakeven, you need more sales if you want your business to survive. So you would need to use all your social media might to advertise and also do promoting via social media. Your customers are out there, reality is, over a million people are looking for what you have to offer but they don’t know you offer it. Advertising is the only way for you to connect with your market.
5. Focusing more on Production than Marketing
Lastly, the focus of many business is wrong, people are so eager to produce, buy goods from the market to sell, sew ready made clothes, import things for sale and so on but that shouldn’t be the focus. The soul of business is marketing. Someone with few goods and excellent marketing would have higher turnover than someone with many goods or products and zero marketing, same way someone with an average product or service with excellent marketing would sell more and have larger market share than someone with quality products or services and zero marketing. Marketing is the soul of the business, I repeat, if you want to stay in business then you must take marketing seriously. Go out talk to people, meet people, show them samples, sieze moments to talk about your business, get people committed to doing business with you, advertise, display, let your business radiate around you wherever you go.
Drop your comments below if this has been useful to you and your experience as business owner.