Competition is the bane and blessing for every business owner. As a business owner you need to keep an eye out for what your competition is doing. This is the ground rule and needs to be followed. In principal, keeping a track of others who are in the same business as you whether it’s for their marketing tactics, their communication, their growth rate and numbers or their new product or service announcements is all part of the game.
The question you might ask is- why do you need to do this?
Here’s why. To learn from the successes and even failings of your competition is smart. Others might be in different development stages than you are and already employing tactics that you intend to explore. Knowing how things are working for them helps you to plan and execute better. Plus, they might be doing some things right. It’s good to adapt and use those solutions for your own business wherever applicable.
For example, let’s take finance. Here are some important things your competition can teach you:
As a business already in existence, the next obvious step is to scale up since every business wants to grow. How to use your funds to expand your business is a key question. Given that expanding is a big move you need to put some research in it otherwise things can backfire. This is where you can take a leaf or two from the books of those who have already done it and how it worked.
Managing cash flow:
How you manage your finance is very crucial to the success of your business. Plus, this is a basic requirement for future loan applications. Try to find out from your competition on how to best manage cash flow and learn from them to do this more effectively.
Allocation of money:
How to allocate your existing funds and where to put how much is a big part of business decisions. Those in the same business as you might have understood this well and being able to lay your hands on that strategy can benefit you immensely.
Brand building is very important. How your competition is using their money for communication and advertising is something that you need to learn from all the time. Especially from the ones who are getting it right.
A business needs capital all the time, whether it’s yours or theirs. Some people are more skilled at raising it than others. Keep an eye out for others in the same business as you and incorporate methods that they are employing to get funds and see if you can adapt those methods for your own business. When it comes to small business working capital loans, we at Lendingkart, are always ready to help.
As a small business while growth is important, being able to have a strong base is extremely critical too. If a business grows continually but does not spend some time is deepening its roots, then this can lead to cracks that can pose big issues if left unattended. How your competitors are using their financial resources to consolidate and deepen their roots can help you understand how to do the same with yours.
No business can grow without new ideas and innovation. How your competitors are using their money to encourage and build on new ideas is something that you can learn a lot from. It is also a very effective use of your money.
Learn from your competitors on how to measure results and profits. A robust and dynamic accounting system can help you reach a good benchmark. Getting this right is very important. Clear financial records are a must and no financial decision can be fruitful without paying attention to numbers.
Prepare for lows:
Every business goes through lows and a part of managing your funds properly is directly linked to being able to survive the challenging times. Understanding how your competition is preparing for such scenarios is very helpful for you to be able to do the same. A competitor who may have successfully managed their financial situation can offer ready solutions but what is important to consider is that another one who might not have done that well will also have some lessons to impart. Don’t ignore those lessons.
Another key area directly related to finance is tax liability and how to manage your funds effectively to make sure you do not accumulate a lot of it. Find out which of your competitors is getting this right and see if you can use some of their processes and practices in your own dealings.
Return on Investment:
How your competition measures return on investment can inform your own financial decision making into a more productive space. Learn from their strategies and assess their gains to see how you can maximize our own.
Learning from your competition can be a mix of do’s and dont’s. The idea is to keep your eyes open and recognize the opportunity to learn. Then feed that learning back into your own business for better results.