Grow your business and dodge threats by writing a SWOT.
What it is
A SWOT Analysis helps you to discover your business’ strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Strengths and weaknesses can be found internally, whereas opportunities and threats are external to your company.
How its helpful
Assessing your business’ strengths and weaknesses can help you to understand how your company is doing and how you could do better. Looking at your opportunities can help you to find a niche in the market and work out how to take hold of and break into that space. Whereas looking into your threats (competing companies etc.) can help you to work out where you may be weak and how you may need to change your business plan or marketing strategy to out-perform the competition.
How to write a SWOT analysis
You need to be fair but quite ruthless when writing a SWOT if it is to have any impact.
Here are some example questions you may need to ask to assess your business –
What advantages does your organization have?
What do you do better than anyone else?
What is your unique selling point?
What do people in your market see as your strengths?
What good opportunities can you spot?
What interesting trends are you aware of?
Changes in technology and markets, changes in the economy, changes in population…
Useful opportunities can come from:
What could you improve?
What should you avoid?
What are people in your market likely to see as weaknesses?
What factors lose you sales?
What obstacles do you face?
What are your competitors doing?
Do you have bad debt or cash-flow problems?
Could any of your weaknesses seriously threaten your business?
If you truthfully assess your company and answer these questions (and more!) then you could discover not only how to improve your sales, but a potential new niche within the market to take hold of. SWOT’s take time, but if written well and completed regularly, then you can see how well you are doing and where you can improve.
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