Scaling your startup means growing your business exponentially to meet rising demand. Perhaps you started out selling to a few dozen people a day. But suddenly your customers number in the hundreds. What are you going to do with the greater demand and the rising number of calls to your office?
Your startup has to be scalable—which means it needs to adapt to the changing conditions so that you can continue growing your business as it becomes more successful. How can you do that?
Here are some tips that can help:
1. Make the Right Investments
You have to prepare for success so that you can scale your business to meet the increase in customers. It may be a bit difficult to take on risks when you’re already risking so much with a startup, but this is a risk you have to take if you’re willing to actually grow your business.
In fact, growing your business may be the best way to make sure that it survives. Trying to hold back to just a few customers may be fine now. But if a new company comes into the industry and lures your customers away, you’re done. It may be riskier to not scale, compared to investing more to enable your company to grow to meet the demands of more customers.
2. Keep Your Eye on Your Money
Just because you need to make investments for scaling your business doesn’t mean you can go all out with your spending. You have to make each dollar count, so you need to be frugal. You have to keep an eye on your expenses.
What you need to keep in mind is that your expenses must lead to greater profits in the end. That’s how you grow your company. If you’re spending $1,000 on improving your website, then you should expect the results to boost your profits by more than $1,000.
So try to keep your expenses low even if you get lots of funding from various sources. Allocate your funds wisely, especially on the more critical stages of your growth.
3. Address and Respond to Changing Markets
Industries tend to change over time. Trends can come and go. Customers can want something new and something different sometime later.
Your business must be able to track these changes so that you’re able to respond better with the types of services and products your potential customers will want. This is one of your primary responsibilities, and you have to succeed at it to enable your company to grow. By identifying market shifts quickly, you’re more able to grab a bigger share of the pie as your competitors scramble to catch up with you.
It’s not as fun if you’re the one doing the scrambling. As a startup, you’re actually doing a lot of scrambling since you’re facing many established brands in your industry. That’s why you have to identify needs and wants that these older companies have forgotten about or neglected, so you can position your brand properly.
4. The Platform Approach
Plenty of startups tend to focus more on the product and services they’re offering to potential people. But you should probably think more in terms of platform. In other words, you need a proper framework that allows you to build and support multiple services, products, and business models.
So now you can’t just offer quick-fix piecemeal solutions for your customers. You need to be more holistic in your approach, so you’re able to put up more products and more features in your current products. This can reduce the cost of innovation while at the same time you’re more ready to adapt to any changes in the market.
5. Maintain Your Focus
In the world of sports, you often hear coaches telling players to keep their eyes on the ball. That’s the kind of advice that also applies to your startup. That’s because it’s very easy to lose your focus along the way.
What’s your long-range vision? What do you plan your company on becoming 5 or 10 years down the line? Everyone in the startup must share the same goals so you can better cooperate. It’s harder to succeed when people have different ideas on what success looks like.
When you have a startup that’s starting to become more successful, you may get more attention from the mainstream media. Maybe you’re being more talked about on social networking websites. More investors are trying to join in.
All these things can be a bit distracting, and they can make you lose focus on what you’re really supposed to do to lead your company to success. Don’t lose sight of your goals, if you want to achieve those goals in the end.