With a new year coming up, it’s never been more important that you’ve got a solid plan for the growth of your business. There are many obstacles up ahead, and they’re not something you will want to reach blindly. It’s no secret that we could be seeing a recession just around the corner, and it’s time you thought about how that will impact your business’s growth, and what you can do to weather it. There’s a lot to consider, because even if it doesn’t directly impact your business operations – you will take a financial hit in one way or another.
Sadly, the recession is something we cannot control. They’re often the result of affairs happening elsewhere in the world, and it’s only a matter of time until the next one happens upon us – all you can really do is prepare for it and make the best of a bad situation. Your partners, your customers, and any other interactions your company relies on will likely be affected, which means you will be too by extension. If you’re going to survive and grow during 2023, you need a solid plan that’s going to get you through it.
Understand How Inflation Will Impact Your Business
So first things first are understanding the what and the why. If you’re going to prepare your business, you need to know what parts of your business are going to see the damage of the recession. Even if you supply essential products to your customers and you feel confident that your business is going to make steady sales – you’re still not completely secure in the event of a recession. Somewhere along the supply chain, there’s going to be an issue and you might see your suppliers upping their prices; that’s just how it is. Every company has quotas to meet, and sadly your company is going to play a role in that.
A simple rise in prices might not scare you, but not every business can afford to take that kind of hit. If your sales are going to see a decrease due to the upcoming recession, and the suppliers are marking up their prices – it could do some serious damage to a business, and 2023 might be the last year it’s able to operate. If possible, assess how much money you could afford to lose each month, and then work with that to find out where you can better make up that sum. Trying to eat the cost and working through the recession could work out, but more often than not it’s better to be more resourceful with what you have.
It’s not going to be good enough to try and push through as if there’s no recession going on – that’s no way to grow. If you can get your business through the recession, then you’re going to have a much easier time pushing forward once the market starts to stabilize. There are plenty of great examples of businesses that have come out on top of the recession, such as Kellogg’s.
Assessing Your Marketing & Presentation
It might seem like the obvious choice to some to put forward a blanket solution, where you cut costs all across the board – but that can have a serious negative impact on your business in the long run. For example, while marketing is one of the more expensive operations of a business, it’s important that you maintain it; else you’re going to have a much harder time than necessary.
Even though you need to find a way to save money before the recession hits, you still need to find ways to stand out amongst your competition. They’re not going to be halting their marketing schemes to let others come out on top, and you shouldn’t be either. In fact, there is plenty of reason you should consider pushing even harder with your marketing than you ever have before. If you’ve got a USP that you could be making use of, now’s the time to put it forward. Innovation is necessary when you’re backed into a corner, so the more advantages you have to work with while your competition is struggling, the better.
Still, that doesn’t mean trying to carry on as usual, and now’s a good time to be more critical about your operations and the results they’re yielding. Which marketing channels can you afford to sacrifice? Where would your resources and finances be better used? The chances are, poor-performing marketing channels are going to have an even more difficult time during the recession, so it would be best to figure out which ones you’re going to focus less on.
How Should You Assess Your Performance?
Well, if everything is set up properly, you should have easily accessible marketing analytics that gives you a detailed rundown on your returns and audience interaction. If you’re making a lot of use of digital marketing, then it would be essential to make sure you’re making full use of Google Analytics 4.
Using this information, you’ll get a good idea of what needs to be cut loose, and where you could better be focusing your resources. It’s not necessarily about saving money here but more about improving on what’s working for you. You’ll be casting a smaller net, but you should be able to put out better quality marketing schemes for the audience that’s more fruitful for your business.
It’s also a great time to make more use of your CRM systems. It’s important that all of your records are being kept up to date, and that the information you have to go off is as relevant as possible if you’re going to take action on it. If all of your leads are mostly coming from one place – that should be your sign to double down on it during the recession. While it might be okay to slack on your market research when business is going smoothly, you can’t afford to take any risks with your marketing if you’re planning to survive and or grow during a recession. There’s no telling how hard your business is going to be hit by it, so you want to be as ready as possible.
Assessing Your Internal Tools and Systems
Of course, as much as it’s important that you’re not cutting down too much of your business to survive the recession, you should also recognize that savings may have to be made in some places – and it’s best to know where you’re going to do that before it’s too late. You don’t want to be forced into any hasty decisions, so laying out what’s most important for your business, and what you can survive without can help you prepare for the worst. If you do need to cut any of your tools or subscriptions down the line, you can be somewhat prepared for it.
Every business has its tools and software that they rely on to operate, and there are usually a lot of processes that are relying on their presence for your everything to function smoothly. Whether it’s databases, automated functions, or customer outreach – if it’s being relied on to some extent, it wouldn’t be healthy for your business to have to drop it in a hurry. While you can afford it, now is the time you should be taking a deeper look at what you’ve got so you can determine what you can live without and how you can go about that.
At first look, it might feel like all of the tools you’re relying on within your business are essential. The workday depends on them, and therefore getting rid of even just one of them would through a spanner in the works. While this might be the case, it could be that you and your team have grown used to the convenience of having them – or have never had to live without them, so you couldn’t work through the day without them now.
The more time you have to prepare for this, the better, as it may even take training to handle some of the operations that your software would usually take care of. Make a list, try crossing something off and picture how you would solve the issue of trying to work without it. If you can’t find a solution, then try crossing off something else.
The second on your list of priorities would be identifying which is most important to you out of the ones that are non-essential. Even if you find a lot of software and subscriptions that you feel you could live without, you wouldn’t have to cut them all – not unless you were taking desperate measures. However, having a tiered system makes it much easier for you to decide on what needs to go and when. The nice-to-haves should be the most impactful and resourceful of your non-essential options, and although you can work without them, they could help you get through the recession on some level.
What You Don’t Need
Lastly, figuring out what you don’t need can help you in many ways. As not only is it going to help you if you need to cut anything loose in preparation for the recession, but it could help you save money in the here and now. You might find that your workflow can be handled just fine even if you were to cut costs on your subscriptions and that you can immediately save money and put it somewhere more important. Once you’ve grown used to using something it can be hard to determine whether you actually need it or not, but things are often changing in the workplace – and what once was an essential tool might not be all that important to you anymore.
It should come down to whether or not you could perform the same tasks without the help of the subscription, and how much time it would take to make up for the lack of convenience. Some services can save you hours each day, while others might just be handling smaller and more monotonous tasks that could be spread out among employees.
The reason you should be getting ready for that as soon as possible is that often these services come with contracts or pre-paid memberships that you would have to pay for soon. It’s no use investing a large amount of money that you’re soon to be ditched, or that you won’t be able to afford in the upcoming months. You want to be free from that contract as soon as possible so that you can get on top of the recession as soon as it hits.
It might take your business days, to weeks, to months to shift from relying on certain tools on a daily basis – especially if you’ve been doing it on a daily basis for years. Making that switch smoothly in the blink of an eye isn’t going to happen, and the last time you want to be handling that is when your business is losing sales and you’re haemorrhaging money. Not only will it benefit your business financially, but your employees will appreciate the preparation time over being put in a stressful period where a crunch may happen in order to meet the quotas and deadlines.
There will be many businesses in 2023 looking to cut costs, drop some of their workforces, or lower the quality of their products or services while scrambling to make up for the money they’re losing. Desperately trying to make your money back once the recession hits isn’t the way to go about things, as these actions could damage your business and your reputation. If possible, you shouldn’t have to drop any of your team, nor should you have to lower the standards that you’re setting for your customers. If you’re prepared and have the plan to get through it, then your business has the potential to come out on top.