Whenever anyone plans to take their new business to the market, they always wish to be the next ultimate success story. However, thousands of startups are created daily, and it’s clear that only a few of them will actually reach the heights that most entrepreneurs dream of.
So what differentiates a successful startup from one that fails to get its feet off the ground?
This is quite an important question in business as many firms seem to struggle the most in their first couple of months in operation. This is a critical period in a firm’s life as it is pretty easy for things to go south. Most firms don’t start with high levels of cash flow or reserves, so they struggle if there is any slowdown in sales.
However, there are ways you can bulletproof your young business to increase the chance of success. If your business starts well, it will likely carry on this momentum for the rest of your journey.
Read on to learn more about startups and the characteristics of a successful business.
Making sure your Foundations are strong
Nearly all businesses start from the idea of a person or group of people. Pretty much any idea can form a business of some sort, as long as you can sell it!
Although the idea is the most straightforward part of starting a business, it can be pretty hard to put into reality. For example, you may be looking to start an operation and find out that your idea is unrealistic or unlikely to take off. Perfecting your idea may be the difference between booming in your first months of operation or some pretty slow growth.
Most successful ideas are ones that aim to solve a problem in the market. These ideas are helpful as they tend to exploit market gaps, allowing your business to stand out naturally.
You may be able to solve problems by utilizing developing technologies. For example, DAN.IT is a successful startup focused on solving many traditional online learning problems by focusing its business model on the Metaverse and its development.
The CEO of DAN-IT, Kseniia Stoblovaya, shared her tips for building a successful startup. She states, ”From our experience the key to the startup success is the team and the product. You need passionate, dedicated and professional people who would be your product evangelists and help you build the trust in your brand. Nevertheless the product itself matters a lot. It should meet your customers’ expectations, or better exceed them.”
Furthermore, it’s also helpful to focus on an idea you actually care about. Many entrepreneurs make the mistake of diving into a field they aren’t interested in because it may be profitable. Although this may work out, you will spend hours upon hours developing this idea.
With all this time spent on your business, you’ll likely get bored and unwilling to commit to your business.
Don’t Neglect Networking
Professional networking is the process of interacting with other people to gain contacts and professional friends or acquaintances.
When it comes to business, networking is your best friend. Nowadays, business is about connections as much as it’s about reputation. Professional networking allows you to maximize your opportunities and boost sales. This means it makes sense to start networking as soon as possible.
Networking has a vast range of benefits. Firstly, it increases your chance of being recommended by other professionals, boosting sales. Furthermore, it may give you access to businesses offering cheaper deals for things such as manufacturing.
Therefore, building a successful network will allow you to cut costs simultaneously and increase demand. These two things are part of the recipe for healthy growth in the first couple of months of business.
Focus on your Funding
Running your own business is incredibly easy to get carried away. When profit starts to roll in, it’s pretty easy to get excited by this and try and expand as soon as possible.
However, this can become a problem as many businesses bite off more than they can chew. If your revenue starts to slow down and you’ve overestimated what you can comfortably afford, things will quickly begin to get challenging.
Expansion is a crucial factor in a successful startup. Higher levels of expansion are likely to boost your growth levels. But how do you expand sustainably?
This is why you need to focus on your funding. If you’re looking to expand, you need to decide whether you’ll try and achieve this with your returns or if you want to look for funding elsewhere. Focusing on funding allows you to grow sustainably without borrowing irresponsibly.
Patience is Key
Looking at incredibly successful companies at the moment, you’ll discover that this success did not come in overnight. Business success usually takes years and is a long gruelling process. DAN-IT’s CEO agrees with this, she states, “Never give up. Every business goes through good and bad times. And every business learns on its own mistakes. So definitely you will make a lot of mistakes, but you need to be courageous to acknowledge them and fast enough to fix them.”
This is why you should be patient and trust the process. Chasing early profits can be quite dangerous and result in you taking pretty risky actions. This will make you more susceptible to shocks that your business will not be able to handle.
By staying patient and investing in your business slowly, you will ensure that you’re carrying out safe and sustainable growth. This is a lot more likely to guarantee long-term success.
Kseniia also recommends that while you’re being patient, you make sure to listen to customers and continuously improve your product. She states, “My advice would be to listen to the customer’s voice and work constantly on the product improvement. We know a lot of great ideas’ examples which didn’t result in a sustainable business. And the key reason was poor communication with the customers, not considering the current market situation. Therefore growing your product you need to grow your brand and marketing team.”