Competition for small Business.

  1. Competition. For many small businesses, it’s the elephant in the room. Why? For some businesses, their competition may be a big box company or a giant corporation, a daunting entity that they’d rather just pretend does not exist than attempt to go head-to-head with. For others, competition maybe be numerous and plentiful; trying to keep track of so many other companies seems like a lost cause and too much work.

    At the end of the day, however, a small business must pick its battles and understand that competition isn’t something that can be swept under the rug. It’s there. In fact, it’s always there, regardless of how well your business is doing. Whether you’re in the red or the black, whether you’re in a niche industry or just another face in the crowd, there will always be other companies out there that’ll be after your customers. The sooner you understand this, the better prepared you’ll be when a new competitor comes knocking.

    Some business owners feel that focusing on competitor is too cutthroat; they may feel that they’re not in business to put others out of business. It’s an understandable mindset. In today’s struggling economy, however, it unfortunately doesn’t pay a minnow in a sea of sharks. How many businesses have you seen go under in the past few years? How many people do you know that are out of work? It’s rough out there. Do you want to sink or swim?

    Figure out who your competitors are. How? Google, Yellowpages, local business directories. Visit their websites. Understand their web presence.

    Now, don’t panic. There’s no need to be inherently afraid of your competition. They may be bigger than you, sure. There may be a lot of others in your space. They may have more customers. They may have a fancier logo, a sexier website and hey, you may be a bit jealous. Don’t panic.

    Before you can even sweat the small stuff, you need to understand who your competitors really are. Only then may you understand how you can rise above them.

    Ask yourself the following in regard to your competitors:

    Where are they located?
    Are they web-based or do they have a physical location?
    What do they have that you want for your own business? Why do you want it?
    How does your product compare to theirs?
    Who are they targeting?
    Are you targeting the same audience?
    What Social Media outlets are the leveraging? What aren’t they?

    You should ask these questions in regard to each of your competitors accordingly, no matter how big or small, and form a plan of attack. Don’t obsess over these questions, but understand that the answers may open doors in regard to how you run your business in the future. You may discover new paths in regard to how to market your company or which markets may be untapped by your competition.

    The answers may also give you an opportunity to pat yourself on the back and relax a little. You can better understand what you do have against your competition.

    In order to carry out your business’ plan effectively, you need to act smartly. Think about Internet Marketing. Consider the free resources out there for your business to take advantage of. Whether it’s SEO tools or small business directories, there are many weapons already available to you in order to carry out a successful attack. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box and go places where your competition hasn’t.

    Much of the potential for your small business prosperity is in your hands. Don’t sit back and let someone else acquire the customers that could just as easily be yours with a bit of hard work and proper research. By understanding your competition, they’ll be sweating, instead of the other way around. What’s your move?

    Author : Brent Barnhart.

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