Discover how to scale your business fast using the best models while doing less in a quick time
I want to discuss with you something important about your success in business.
And that’s the top three secrets of ecommerce as touching to scaling businesses.
Note: I birth this article from my speech at the Business Owners Special Summit titled, “The Top 3 Secrets of the Successful Ecommerce Business”
The theme of the program was, “Scaling Small Businesses to a Global Level”.
The article now contains a lot of knowledge that I didn’t mention at the summit because of constant updates.
Scale A Business Definition
To scale is growing your business faster than its actual rates. It’s the ability to grow your business without your direct input and negatives.
By negatives, I mean not running at a loss because of business expenses.
Scaling condemns traditional thinking and requires critical thinking. No wonder very few business owners do it.
Growing a business is moving at a steady pace. Scaling is moving at a quick boost pace.
If a child moves from class 1 to class 2 in the first year and class 2 to class 3 in the second year, that is a steady promotion.
Now look at this.
If another child moves from class 1 to class 3 in the first year, you can say the child has received a double promotion. The double promotion is what I scaling.
The first child is growing while the second is scaling.
Benefits Of Scaling A Business
The single most important reason to scale is to increase in demand and become profitable in a quick time.
Notice the keyword in there? 1. Increase in Demand 2. Become Profitable 3. Quick Time
It’s possible your business increases its demand, (i.e. more people using your products or services) but is still not profitable.
It’s possible to increase in demand and become profitable, but only after long years of hard work, not in a quick time.
The purpose of teaching is to let you know how to scale your business while doing less.
How To Scale A Business And Grow Faster
Sell To A Starving Crowd
Gary Halbert, one of the successful copywriter that ever lived, was in a seminar and asked a question.
He said, “If I’m opening up a hamburger stand, what’s the most important factor to have success?”
He got a bunch of different answers:
- Some said, “The secret sauce”.
- Another said, “The price and quality”.
- Other said, “Marketing”.
“No” Gary Halbert said.
He continued, “None of these really matter if you don’t have a starving crowd.”
And I start from here.
A man in the deserts cares less about your sales pitch and products packaging as long as he gets water to drink.
I don’t care how good you are at marketing. You will struggle to sell a bottle of coke diabetic patients.
But take the same coke to a construction site with men at work and notice how fast they will respond to sales.
The men at work need substance with addictive (gas) to keep up the energy. And what you sell (the coke) fulfills that.
The coke is the same; the difference is the hunger.
A wrong question to ask yourself when starting any business is, “What can I sell?”. The successful entrepreneur asks, “What will people buy?”
That’s why I used the words “starving crowd”. Starving is a deep state of hunger (beyond foods) and the crowd quantifies the number of people in this state (starving).
- People are starving of starting an online business that pays daily.
- Business owners are starving on how to sell online.
- People are starving of the need to look better. And more.
The world is starving. Feed them and they feed you not only with their money but also scale your business with their words of mouth.
Be the First
“Who was the first man to land on the moon?”. Neil Armstrong.
Who was the second? I doubt you know. And the third?
Most times, people knows the first but struggle to remember the second and afterwards?
It is better to be the first than wait to be the best. For to be the head, you need to be ahead.Oluboba Ayodeji
It’s much easier to get into the people’s mind first than trying to convince them you are a better option than what they have been using.
A study shows that 87% of buyers returned to their first products in the first three months of using a new one.
The same way a woman harldy forget the one who disvirgined her and who most likely have sex with him again if chances ever occurs – principle of first.
It is a trillion time easy to change the words in a document that it is to change the contents in a man’s heart or his choices.
In growing your business, lead with innovation and do massive publicity that everybody assign that idea to you. And you now have an unfair advantage.
I asked a group of persons what’s the name of the leading bank in Nigeria. The answer was First bank.
You may say, “That’s not true. First bank is not the best. There are banks better than them.”
While there may be other better banks, I want you to understand that people confuse leading with first. They believe the whatever has made you the first; you are the best (leading).
Winning the people’s heart (marketing) is not a battle of best products; but of perception.”
I spoke more on that in the article – Branding in marketing.
It is called, “First Impressions Matters” not “Best Impressions Matters”.
Haven’t you realized that it’s not the best (good-hearted) politician that wins but the one who sells the perception of him being the best”
It’s easy to sell this belief of being the best when you are the first. And the people seeing you as the leader become loyal to you.
We see this is Firstbank. Aside from being the first, people see them to be more secured (perception) than any other banks.
What should you do if you are not the first in a new business category?
Set up a new niche and be the first. Or be the first to roll out a new feature that complements the existing products.
By the new business category, I mean leverage on the Ps of business. The Ps of business are:
People (Youth, Women Only) – Customers before business
Process, (Manufacturing, Delivery) – Business operation
Products. (Physical or digital products, services) – What is it you sell
Let’s assume you sell shoe (products). You probably won’t be the first to sell shoes. That means the first is not available in terms of products.
You can decide to be the first in terms of people. You sell only to females (first in people) in a particular location.
Example 2: You own a logistics company. You won’t be the first logistics company (products taken). What if you could be the first in the process? Since most logistics company operates at day, you could choose to operate only at night (process).
So when I need to send urgent documents to someone who is writing an exam next morning, I will remember you.
Example 3: If you are a web designer, you are probably not the first in designing ecommeerce websites (Products). But you can be the first in process.
How? Since most designers charge a onetime fee, you can decide to spread that same amount into 12 months and charge per month.
Others charge N100,000 one time. You can charge N10,000 per month which makes N120,000 per year–you earn extra N20,000.
- Facebook was the first known social network.
- Instagram didn’t compete with Facebook but set up a new category of being the first known image-focused social network.
- Twitter didn’t compete with Facebook but set up a new category of being the first known text-focused social network.
- WhatsApp didn’t compete with Facebook but set up a new category of being the first known direct messaging social network.
- Vimeo didn’t compete with YouTube but set up a new category of being the first known marketing video social network.
- Etsy didn’t compete with Amazon but set up a new category of being the first handmade and vintage items marketplace.
People think first in categories, then brand. You think phone before you think Samsung.
Facebook Marketplace competing with Amazon is a dead end. We have categorized Facebook as a social network and Amazon as a marketplace.
- Jumia was the first known marketplace
- Konga competed with Jumia and almost closed down. Today, they are wise to accept the second place.
- Payporte completed and people placed next to Konga–third position.
- Habari (by GTB) competed and closed down.
- Jiji didn’t compete with Jumia as a full-fledged marketplace, but set up a new category of being the first known classified ad marketplace in Nigeria.
Another advantage of being the first is that your business name easily become generic. By generic, it becomes an everyday name.
Haven’t you realised?
- People ask for OMO instead of detergent
- People ask for Maclean instead of toothpaste
- People ask for Mr Biggs instead of eatery
- People ask for Indomie instead of noodles.
Ps: If you can’t be the first either in people, products or process, don’t go beyond the third. Remember, people hardly remember past the third list.
Be Specific With Your Offer
Let me tell you a story of the old man with the hammer.
One fine sunny day, the owner of a large ship discovered that the ship’s engine is no longer working. He called all the engineers on board, but none could make the engine work again.
He then sent forth the messenger to get him someone who could do the job. In hours, the messenger returned with an old man with a hammer.
On getting to the ship, the old man went straight to the engine room. The owner of the ship went with him to see what the old man will do.
The old man removed a hammer from his bag and started hitting a particular spot of the engine. After sometime, he stopped and asked them to start the engine. Lo-and-behold, the engine worked.
The owner of the engine asked the old man, “What’s the bill?” The old man replied “N100,000”
The owner frowned and said,” Why N100,000? When the only thing you did was to hit with a hammer. And all took less than a minute. Okay, send me an itemized bill. Let me see what you bought”
A day after, the owner received an itemized bill from the old man. The invoice contained only two lists.
- Tapping with a hammer–N1,000
- Knowing where to tap–N99,000
As a writer, when will you have the courage to say;
- Writing with a pen – N1000.
- Knowing what to write – N199,000.
Specializing down position you as the go-to person in your field increases your impact.
Push out your credibility and help people perceive you as an expert by choosing one thing and doing it well.
Just because you can do not mean you should. I will rather be strong somewhere than be weak everywhere.
The store that sells only female shoes will scale faster and sell better than another that sells all forms of fashion items.
The more products and the more markets you pursue; the less money you make.
Look at this example.
If you are a business owner seeking to hire a web designer agency and you came across these two websites, which will you choose?
We are professional website designers offering custom web design, SEO, and online marketing services. Let’s get your business online in style.
We are an eCommerce company offering law firm web design, SEO, and online marketing services to small businesses. 1500+ businesses helped since 2001.
Which agency will you want to work with.
I believe it’s easier to scale your business when you do one thing that doing many things. One thing is needful.
Think And Apply Leverage
To scale your ecommerce business, you need leverage. And this leverage comes in two ways – masses or the classes.
Either you sell to the masses (in numbers) or the classes (in prices). To make a million, you either sell to the millions or the millionaires.
So, if you have a website that serves a million people per month, you scale by numbers (masses).
If you are a web designer building ecommerce websites for businesses, you scale by price (classes).
That takes me to the scaling formula, which is;
Scale A Business = Unit Sold X Unit Profit
If you have a goal to growing your business to ten million per month, what it means is?
You either earn a profit of N100 from 100,000 transaction or earn a profit of N100,000 from 100 transactions.
Conclusion On How To Scale A Business:
If for every time you want to make sales, you spend on ads. You will soon be out of business – just a matter of time.
Growing your business should not depend on promotions. Advert is good at the beginning, but should survive afterwards without it.
A recap on how to scale your business fast:
- Starving crowd
- Be the First
- Be Specific
- Think Leverage
Check out the best business model for startups.