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Are you ready to grow your business? Our report has the answers

Championing the achievements of small businesses has always been our priority here at Avery WePrint. We recognise how tough, exhilarating and exciting it can be to successfully start and grow a business. Equally, we understand that making the decision to grow a business is a huge decision that’s not always easy.That’s why we decided to research the ‘Moment of Growth’ – looking at when, why and how the UK’s small business owners chose to expand their operations. Our study explores the emotional highs and lows, the fears, challenges and sacrifices that come with growing a business. We know that many of you will be considering your next big step in business, so we hope our research will help make your journey a little easier.

A series of mixed emotions

It’s normal to have mixed emotions about growing your business. The most common feeling associated with growing a business is excitement. This is followed by a collective mix of pride, nerves and feeling confident. A quarter of small business owners also felt fear, citing ‘failure’ as their biggest fear.

A little over half the small business owners we spoke to said starting a business was harder than growing one. Whilst over a quarter felt that growing was more difficult and the remaining 22% felt the two decisions were equally challenging.

Funding challenges

Funding and financial worries were a big concern for many of the small business owners we spoke to. The majority of business owners favoured saving up until they had enough to afford the next step. This was followed by over 40% of business owners saying they used their own personal savings to grow their business. Loans and external investment came much lower down the list.

It seems the investment is worthwhile for the UK’s small businesses though. Growing a business brings new customers according to 60% of the small business owners surveyed. A quarter said growing their business had enabled them to provide better customer service too.

Marketing and branding

Evolving your brand and effectively marketing your growing business were found to be important in our study too. Networking and social media were cited as two of the most effective marketing tools for a growing business. When it comes to branding, over a quarter of the businesses we spoke to believed it was important to evolve their branding as they grew. Even more felt that having the right branding helped to attract the kind of customers they wanted. Our advice is to bear in mind that branding is about so much more than your logo or colour scheme, it’s how customers feel about your brand and what they associate with it. Being consistent with this across everything you do, from signage to social media, product labels to business cards and more, will help to ensure customers remember your brand and feel the way you want them to. Don’t forget we can help you with this, with WePrint you can apply your design to multiple products – and why not check out our guide to rebranding too?

Sacrifice and Success

As you might expect, there is no success without sacrifice, our study found the biggest sacrifice business owners made was working longer hours. Yet despite this, it was great to see that the mood amongst Britain’s small businesses was overwhelmingly positive. Over 80% said they had no regrets at all about their decision to grow and many plan to continue growing too. This optimism is perhaps the reason that the most common piece of advice small business owners would give to others thinking about growing, was ‘go for it, you might regret it if you don’t’.

We hope these headline findings have helped answer some of your questions about business growth, if you’d like to see more from our study, check out the report.

7 June 2016