Seeing growth in your fashion business is one of the joys of being an entrepreneur. There is no feeling, in business, that can be compared to seeing your products increasingly solve the problems of customers everywhere and seeing customers glad to have your products.
But, what happens when this growth seems to always be one step ahead of you and increasingly elusive? Applying growth strategies to your business can help at these times and here is how;
What is a Business Growth Strategy?
A business growth strategy is a strategy that allows companies to expand their business. There are several growth strategies a business owner can apply to cause steady growth in their business but for today we will be looking at 2 growth strategies. They are;
- Market Penetration.
- Market Development.
The least risky growth strategy to apply in business is the market penetration strategy. This strategy involves marketing existing products to existing customers. This strategy works best when you do not want to venture out of the fashion products you currently sell to your customers.
This method aims to increase the market share of that business. Market share is the percentage that a company has of the total sales for a particular product or service.
There are various ways to implement the market penetration growth strategy in your fashion business, they are;
1. Lowering Prices of Products
This method might seem unattractive but it can be a very effective short-term plan especially if you and your competitors sell products within the same price range. For example, if you sell good quality leather bags for #10,000 and all your competitors also sell leather bags for that price, lowering the prices of yours to say, #9,000, might attract the customers of your competitors, thereby increasing your market share.
In reducing the prices of your fashion products, however, you need to ensure that the new price you decide for those products is sustainable. You need to ensure it still pays all your bills while still bringing in a profit. If this is not possible then this growth strategy is not for you.
2. Finding New Ways for Customers to Use your Products
This is another way to get your existing customers excited over your products again. This involves researching and finding ways you can make your fashion products useful for multiple things.
For example, if you sell female clothing, you can make an outfit that can be used as either a skirt, a blouse, or a suspender skirt. This kind of outfit will help your customers save money and have a variety of clothing choices from just one piece of clothing. I saw something like this recently and I thought the mind behind it was genius.
3. Improving your Products
Everybody loves an upgrade in a product. Taking customer feedback and applying them to your products will help you penetrate the market better. Sometimes, you can even apply improvements your customers did not notice to your products.
For example, if you sell outfits for nursing mothers, you can find a way to add an opening, that is cleverly concealed by using a button or zip, to the breast area to make it easier for the mothers to feed their babies without having to lift or pull done their outfits. This could be a small improvement that your customers will love.
4. Better Advertising
We all know how important it is to advertise your fashion products effectively. Finding newer and more creative ways to advertise your fashion products can ignite a new interest in your products from your existing audience.
5. Offering Discounts for Bulk Purchases
Any opportunity you give to your customers to save money will be well appreciated. One thing you can do is offer discounts to customers when they buy items in bulk. The number of items you take as a bulk purchase is totally up to you.
For example, if you sell cosmetics, you can give a discount to customers that buy multiple items from you, say foundation, lipstick, eyeliner, eye pencil, lipgloss, concealer, and so on. You can even package multiple of your products together and sell that package for a lower price than if they had been purchase as single units.
6. New and Improved Packaging
Sometimes all you need to do is improve on your product packaging to spark a new interest in your products from existing customers. This is because seeing the same packaging over and over again can get boring and new things excite people. You can decide to change the way you package your products to make it more attractive to customers.
In addition to better packaging, you can also decide to include a small gift to go along with all orders customers make from your brand. Just make sure this gift is something they will find useful.
This business growth strategy involves selling current products to new customers or launching them in a new geographical location. This strategy can also be referred to as market expansion because you are taking your products to a new set of people.
This strategy is usually employed when fashion entrepreneurs find that competition in their current market is too strong for them and it is hard to grow in that market. If your fashion brand finds it hard to get new customers it cannot increase sales and profits so this strategy might be needed.
To achieve this, you might decide to switch from being a bespoke fashion brand to start a ready-to-wear fashion line so you can sell your fashion products to other retailers and maybe even begin to offer dropshipping services to others.
Market development may also involve offering your fashion products to customers in another state or country. If you notice that there are too many brands offering the products you sell to customers in your location, you can decide to start selling yours in locations that do not have so much competition.
This strategy can also be employed when you find new uses for your fashion products. For example, if you make skin care products for women and you discover that they are also useful for babies, you can decide to start marketing them to women with babies thereby taking your products to a new market.
You need to be careful when it comes to using the market development growth strategy, though, as it involves entry into an entirely new market. You must do your due diligence and carry out market and customer research to determine how desirable, feasible and viable your business will be in the new market.
You need to learn to understand your new customers better and know how to get to them because what worked before might not work now due to differences in culture and behaviour.