Entrepreneurs and small business owners are always looking for ways to increase their revenue. Whether your business is in the startup phase or if you’re an established business, this is probably something that you struggle with every day.
The good news is that you’re not alone. In our ongoing annual survey of small business owners, we found that a majority of entrepreneurs and small business owners struggle with how to identify sources of new revenue as part of their small business growth plans. In fact, in our preliminary analysis of the data we’ve received so far (we will be collecting data for the next several weeks, so you can take the survey here), concern about revenue growth is second only to concerns about cash flow.
With this in mind, we thought we would share some tips on how to quickly increase your revenue in the new year:
Look for opportunities to upsell or cross-sell to existing customers. Assuming you already have paying customers, the easiest way to increase your revenue base is to sell more products or services to those same customers. In other words, are you taking each and every opportunity to identify additional products that your customers might benefit from? Are there complementary products are services that you could be offering that make your customers’ experience more enjoyable – while increasing revenue at the same time.
Diversify your revenue streams. Is a majority of your revenue coming from just a handful of customers or products? If so, then it may be worth looking for ways to diversity your revenue streams. The more concentrated your revenue within a small group of customers or products, the more you are at risk for failure if one of those customers or products starts failing to deliver revenue. If you have diverse streams of revenue, on the other hand, you will not only increase your revenue, but you will insulate yourself from the risk of the loss of one product or customer materially hurting your business.
Look for recurring revenue opportunities. Generating steady, recurring revenue is a great way to both increase and stabilize revenue, which can be especially helpful if your business experiences volatile swings from period to period. Are there ways that you can offer ongoing and repetitive services or products to your customers? Just as software companies sell monthly subscriptions and used car dealers sell extended warranties, there are typically ways to create naturally recurring revenue as part of your existing sales process.
Identify opportunities to generate revenue from referrals. Another great way to increase your revenue is to look for referral opportunities. Chances are, you are probably referring your customers to other businesses when you aren’t able to help, so you might as well make money from those referrals. Look for partnerships with complementary businesses that are similar – but not competitive – with yours and ask for a cut of whatever you refer to them. For example, a corporate wellness company we work with has a deal with a chiropractic office to collect 10% of the revenue they refer their way. In this case, the wellness company’s customers want chiropractic care and the wellness company collects revenue for doing something it would have done anyway. Everybody wins in this case.
These are just a few of the easier ways to start generating more revenue for your small business in 2015. Learn more about these and other small business growth strategies by attending our free online training workshop.