Developing your business requires thinking carefully about strategy.

What’s your approach to business development?

When you've got a small business and you're intent on building it into something bigger and better, you have no shortage of potentially viable strategies. Many entrepreneurs focus on attracting new customers – more customers means more sales, which means more money, they assume. This is true, but it's far from the only way to view development.

Business development progress comes in all different forms. It's worthwhile to think about them all.

In reality, business development progress comes in all different forms. As you go about planning for your company's future, it's worthwhile to think about the many varying ways in which it's possible to grow.

4 different types of development

Making more money is obviously worthwhile, but it's not the only way to advance your business development plans. According to the South Australia Department of State Development, there are actually four distinct types of business growth, and all of them are valuable for a small business looking to take steps forward:

  • Acquiring more assets: Do you have more property to work with? More raw materials to build your product? These are key indicators of growth.
  • Expanding market share: It's not just about how much you're selling – it's also important how you compare to the competition.
  • Increasing productivity: "Do less with more," they say. If your staff is still the same size, but it's churning out more work, that's a huge plus.
  • Financial indicators: Return on investment, return on assets, profit margin and so on – if you get deep into the weeds on all the numbers, you might find signs of growth.

All of the above should be seen as vital to your business. Why focus on just one priority?

Making sales is important, but it's no guarantee of success.Making sales is important, but it's no guarantee of success.

Look for permanent growth, not just sales

The trick here is that just making sales is only one small part of growth. If all you do is sell more, there's no guarantee that your improvements are permanent – you may just have had a good week.

That's why, according to the American Express OPEN Forum, it's important to know the difference between sales and true development. Development is about finding a way to ensure better sales numbers not just now, but sustainably into the future. If you don't already have a plan for doing so, it might be because you need help. It's fortunate that chartered accountants can provide it.

At Wilson Porter, we understand well that informed decision-making is crucial to business success. That's why we have a team of business development consultants in place who are keen on looking to the future and helping you with strategic planning. We have years of experience with crafting business development frameworks, and we're ready to work our magic for you next.