10 Business Growth Strategies for 2024

By Kevin Brouillard · May 22, 2024 · 8 minute read

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10 Business Growth Strategies for 2024

To stay relevant and competitive, your business has to grow. But planning for the future and putting business growth strategies into action can be challenging.

Following the uncertainty of the past couple of years (thanks to inflation and interest rate adjustments aimed at controlling it), many business owners are looking for ways to stay flexible while also seizing new opportunities for expansion. To stay ahead of the pack, consider these 11 strategies to set yourself up for business growth in 2024.

1. Reduce Risks

Whether you’re getting a new business off the ground or already have a few years under your belt, risk management is an important consideration. About 20% of small businesses fail in their first year, and almost half don’t survive beyond five years. Growing too fast is one risk that could possibly sink a new or expanding venture.

Diversifying your business’s revenue streams through new products or services and increasing your client base may be a couple of ways to become more resilient to risk.But minimizing your risk even when taking those steps is also a good idea. Before investing in a new product launch, for example, you may want to conducti a break-even analysis to identify how many units must be sold to cover production costs.

Researching the market for your products or services can be helpful in that it lets you identify demand and growth potential before you invest money. Addressing an unmet need or niche is generally less risky than entering a saturated market with more established competitors.

Buying insurance coverage is another option to proactively protect your business. Depending on the type of business and assets, this could include general liability insurance, commercial property insurance, or product liability insurance. While this does increase a business’s fixed monthly costs, it could avoid a costly scenario or litigation.

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2. Focus on Customer Experience

Customers and clients are critical to the success of any business. Enhancing their experience can help you gain repeat customers and recruit new consumers to spur business. Here are some strategies that can help.

Building a Sales Funnel

Whereas customer service is limited to direct interactions, customer experience encompasses everything a business offers, including the product or service you’re providing, shipping, packaging, advertising, and ease of use.

Learning how customers feel about certain aspects of your business is easier if you plan ahead.

Collecting customer information at checkout(such as a phone number and email address), for instance, can help your business maintain ongoing engagement with sales offers and capture feedback with a follow-up survey.

Customer Management Systems

Once communication is established, you can enhance customer experience by providing useful tips for using your products, as well as promotional offerings. Personalizing advertising campaigns and streamlining the purchase process can also enhance customer satisfaction.

You can integrate customer convenience and satisfaction into your relationship with customers beyond the transaction stage. Customer-oriented policies for returns, refunds, and cancellations could turn a potentially negative experience into an opportunity to build trust and loyalty.

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3. Establish a Digital Presence

You can use the internet to give potential customers opportunities to find your business and buy your services or products. This is one of the key business growth strategies.

Social media is a free and easy method for providing information on your business and engaging with customers. You can use platforms like Facebook and Instagram to target marketing campaigns by geographic location, age, or other demographics.

If your business has a website or blog, search engine optimization (SEO) is another way you could enhance your business’s digital presence. SEO tactics can help your site or posts rank higher on search engines like Google or Bing. Including meta descriptions, header tags, and keywords are some leading SEO strategies. Alternatively, joining popular sites like Yelp or Tripadvisor could increase your business’s SEO.

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4. Expand Locations

If you’ve outgrown your current location or you’re looking to add a new workspace or storefront to reach untapped markets, now may be a good time to expand your physical presence. But before you take the leap to rent or buy real estate, there are some important considerations to think through.

Where your business is located can have multiple impacts, including the talent pool you can draw from, the size of your customer base, as well as the cost of doing business.

To identify a suitable site for expansion, you’ll want to look at factors that make your current location successful, such as customer traffic, adjacent attractions, and population demographics. Evaluating a potential property for its ability to accommodate current and future needs could help you set your business up for long-term growth.

Assessing the competition is another key step when you’re approaching expansion. While rival businesses may pose challenges, they could also provide an opportunity to grow through acquisition. While it may require a significant investment, buying another enterprise with a proven business model and existing brand can let you bypass the time-consuming phase of starting a small business and allow you to generate cash flow and revenue sooner.

As the Baby Boomer generation continues to approach retirement, many will likely be looking to sell their long-running small businesses. This trend represents an opportunity for younger entrepreneurs to take the reins. Business transition planning can take time, so starting the conversation early could be beneficial.

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5. Make Acquisitions

You may feel it’s time to acquire an existing company in order to expand. A small business loan that helps you buy a pre-existing business or franchise (or buy out partners of your current business) is called a business acquisition loan.

If the acquisition seems to make sense for you or your current company, financing the arrangement can speed up the process of starting your new venture. Small business franchise loans are another area to explore.

Make the best decision for your situation by learning how business acquisition loans work and what you’ll need to apply for one.

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6. Empower Your Team

When evaluating business growth strategies, it’s important to consider not just external resources but also internal growth opportunities. The people who work at your business, whether they’re employees or partners, are also integral to your business’s success.

Employee turnover can be a hindrance to growing your business. The time and effort spent rehiring and onboarding new workers can come at a cost to productivity and profit. Finding ways to engage employees could increase retention and create a positive and healthy workplace culture. Helpful strategies include professional development opportunities, encouraging coworker mentorship, and redesigning an office layout to reflect your workers’ wants and needs.

A more empowered and fulfilled workforce could translate to improved customer service and job performance outcomes.

While employee engagement strategies can vary, providing avenues for both one-on-one communication and anonymous feedback may help build trust and obtain more candid feedback.

7. Network

Business networking involves meeting other businesspeople, including entrepreneurs representing competitors, potential partners, and mentors. Any and all of these people might help inform how to grow your business.

As a business owner, getting a fresh perspective from peers can provide valuable insight and opportunities to test-run your products and business growth ideas. Networking is also a chance to gain knowledge about industry best practices in areas like sales, supply chain, and marketing. If financing is key to growing your business, networking may also be a way to meet potential investors or partners for your venture.

To help you decide which groups or events are worth your limited time as a business owner, consider who you want to meet and what you want to gain. Following up on any contacts you make with a personalized note and invitation to continue the conversation could help you translate a lead into a relationship.

In addition to one-off events, consider joining a professional association or the local chamber of commerce. These groups offer opportunities for long-term networking and relationship building.

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8. Redevelop Your Business Plan

There are plenty of growth options available to small businesses. But coordinating efforts to sustain changes long-term can be challenging.

A small business plan can help you organize strategies within your business structure and provide a roadmap for how to grow your business.

One thing the pandemic taught us is the importance of planning for the unexpected. A strong business plan can prepare your small business for different scenarios and obstacles you may encounter in the pursuit of your goals.

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9. Be Adaptable

A business plan can serve as a guide for business growth, but it can’t account for every contingency and situation. As technology, regulation, and competition in the market evolve, your business may need to adapt its organizational structure to stay afloat and on track for its growth goals.

Unforeseen opportunities for growing your business may arise along the way, and being flexible to act on them quickly could be a difference maker.

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10. Consider International Expansion

Global markets can look very appealing. But this sort of growth requires careful planning and shrewd timing if you want to capitalize on such opportunities.

This one can be a challenge. If you wait too long, your competitor may beat you to the international punch. But if you expand too early, you may put your existing domestic business at financial risk.

If you’re thinking about going global, it’s a good idea to come up with a concrete business plan for the expansion, just as you did when founding your business. Explore potential target markets, consider marketing and regulatory costs, and investigate potential suppliers and distribution channels.

The Takeaway

There’s no one universal approach to finding success and business growth in 2024. Good strategies for how to grow a small business will likely differ from those that work for a mid-size or large company. It’s important to determine which strategies align with your resources, target audience, type of business, and goals.

As your business evolves, keep in mind that what worked to get it off the ground may not work as well for your next stage of growth. Referring back to your business plan can help you track progress and make changes as needed.

If you’re seeking financing for your business, SoFi can help. On SoFi’s marketplace, you can shop top providers today to access the capital you need. Find a personalized business financing option today in minutes.

With SoFi’s marketplace, it’s fast and easy to search for your small business financing options.

Photo credit: iStock/SeventyFour

SoFi's marketplace is owned and operated by SoFi Lending Corp. See SoFi Lending Corp. licensing information below. Advertising Disclosures: SoFi receives compensation in the event you obtain a loan through SoFi’s marketplace. This affects whether a product or service is featured on this site and could affect the order of presentation. SoFi does not include all products and services in the market. All rates, terms, and conditions vary by provider.

Financial Tips & Strategies: The tips provided on this website are of a general nature and do not take into account your specific objectives, financial situation, and needs. You should always consider their appropriateness given your own circumstances.

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