Home renovation and design has never been more popular with magazines, blogs and reality tv show galore flooding our senses. A lot of us put a lot of effort into designing and maintaining our home but can we say the same for our business?
Businesses all start out the same way – with an idea closely followed by a vision on what the business will look like. Just like building or renovating a property, there are many different aspects involved when it comes to building and designing the look and functionality of your business.
There are many similarities between building a house and building a business:
Location, Location, Location: Which area are you going to base your business and what is the region you are going to service? Local, regional, state, national, international. Ask yourself: can this location sustain may business and is this location good for business?
Timeline: Just like building a house needs tradesmen who specialize in specific trades, you will find that at some stage you will need outside help whether that be signwriters for your vehicle, website designers for your website, shopfitters for your store or graphic artists for your business cards. Having a timeline on when you will need this particular services will help keep you on track. Speak to your outside contractors with your timeline in mind and see if it’s feasible. You may think your website will only take 1 week when in fact it’s a 4 week project by the time you have listed all of your stock. Unlike ‘The Block’ many big projects don’t happen in 7 days!
Structure and stability: Every house needs a strong building frame and every business needs the same. Sit down and carefully map out the building blocks for your business. Start with the foundation of the business which is ultimately the business owner. In the beginning, a business will rely solely on the founder/director/CEO. Work your way down to see how many other staff or outside contractors you will need to ensure the design of your business is able to be maintained.
Amenities: Every property needs the essentials such as electricity and running water. The same goes for your business. Spending too much time on the fun stuff such as merchandising your store but not having a structured stock-take system for ordering your stock is a recipe for disaster. Get all of the mundane things in place first that are essential for your business: business bank account, ABN, domain name registration, leasing property, etc. Once you’ve got that sorted then you can get to the exciting stuff!
Marketing: There’s no point having a business if noone can find you! Ensure your website has all of your recent contact details and understand the other directories you should be part of such as Google Maps. Aside from the actual location of your business, people need to hear about your business. Decide which marketing is best for you: print advertising, Google Ads, SEO campaigns and DO YOUR RESEARCH! Marketing campaigns need to be structured and monitored otherwise you will have no idea how well (or badly) they are performing.
Appearance: First impressions are EVERYTHING when it comes to property and your business. If the front lawn is overgrown with weeds or your website doesn’t work, you have lost the most important opportunity to make a lasting impression on your visitors or customers. Designing your business encompasses many different aspects such as your company logo, website, signage, social media page, staff uniform, front reception area. You need to have all the boxes ticked that your brand is consistent across every level and customers associate that brand with a good experience.
Maintenance: If there is a leak in your bathroom you get it fixed. Same goes for your business. If there is a page on your website not loading or wrong information on your brochure, fix it before it turns into a bigger problem and you end up losing customers.
If you design your business right the first time it will make your transition to ‘business owner’ that much smoother. If the time comes you want to sell your business, just like property – if you have all the foundations in place, you will be a winner on ‘Auction Day!’