Starting your own business as a sole trader is one of the most rewarding things you can do. It is also, unfortunately, one of the hardest, especially when it comes to growing and scaling. To make things a little easier, we’ve compiled five tips designed to help you scale your business up without the growing pains.
Automate Wherever Possible
The first thing you’re going to want to do when trying to scale a single-person operation is to automate wherever possible. We suggest getting started with AP automation, as your finances are arguably one of the most important aspects of the business. Nothing else functions if cash flow isn’t doing its thing.
From here, you can work on automating other aspects of your business in an order that is tailored to your specific needs and goals.
Secure a Prestigious Address
Securing a prestigious address does two things: It protects your home from having customers or clients randomly showing up, and it shows that you mean business. We understand that not everyone can afford a prime CBD location, but these days, there are far more flexible (and budget-friendly) options available.
Many co-working spaces allow those who use space within them to display the building’s address as if it were their own. This instantly improves your security and keeps your personal details safe while also boosting the way you are perceived in the eyes of potential clients.
Have a Killer Digital Presence
It’s never been more important to have a strong digital presence that really showcases who you are as a brand and how you can help potential clients. If you’re not comfortable going the DIY route to create something truly spectacular, we suggest investing in the services of a creative design studio. Find a cutting-edge company staffed by talented designers and developers, and the results will pay dividends.
You’ll also want to place emphasis on the content you fill your website with and the way your brand presents across external channels such as social media.
Don’t be Afraid to Outsource
You can’t be everywhere at once. The sooner you accept this simple truth, the easier your life will be. This means that sometimes, you’re going to have to outsource things in order to grow.
For example, if you’re running an eCommerce business and want to expand your offerings to a new country or city, splitting your time will be quite expensive and ineffective. In this scenario, a 3PL fulfillment company would be the best solution. By the same token, if your passion lies in hand-crafting your products, there’s nothing wrong with outsourcing your copywriting and marketing.
Protect your Data
Finally, protecting your data is vital. There’s no point putting time, money, and effort into growing your business if you’re not able to care for everything you’ve built. This is particularly important for those who handle sensitive data or would struggle to build their database back up if anything happened. However, it is best practice for every business, even if you have a staff of one.
We suggest making use of cyber resilience and a cloud-based disaster recovery platform and ensuring that all devices and software are kept up to date. Robust antivirus software is also an absolute must.
Going it alone is scary, but it can also be super rewarding, especially when you get to look back at everything you’ve achieved and know that you made it all happen. These tips will help you grow, but there’s no substitute for dedication and hard work, so remember to keep working on yourself and your business while implementing them.
Jason is the Marketing Manager at a local advertising company in Australia. He moved to Australia 10 years back for his passion for advertising. Jason recently joined BFA as a volunteer writer and contributes by sharing his valuable experience and knowledge.