Taking a look at existing business can reveal ways to increase revenue.
From observing your competition to utilizing your trustworthy reputation, seeing the current areas of your business in new ways can often reveal ways to increase revenue. — courtneyk/Getty Images

The expression, “You can’t see the forest for the trees,” likely rings true for many small business owners when it comes to seeing different ways to generate revenue. While you’ve been executing your business plan and managing the details of day-to-day operations, do you have a sense that opportunities for potential profits might be going unnoticed?

The good news is your instincts about that are likely correct. For most companies, there are often opportunities to increase revenue just by leveraging areas of the existing business in new ways. The challenge is taking the time to step back and recognize them.

To identify any unrecognized revenue opportunities, answer these five questions:

Have you realized the full potential of existing customer relationships?

It’s common knowledge that it’s easier to keep existing customers than to find new ones. But the truth is, when you maintain good relationships and intentional communication with your customers, you can achieve both. First, if you have more than one product or service to offer, there are cross-sell and upsell opportunities with each existing customer. Second, when you ensure customers are happy, you can ask for referrals and reviews, which equates to free and valuable marketing that can bring new customers to your business.

[Read: How to Boost Customer Retention and Drive Repeat Business]

Do you optimize your online persona?

Online reviews impact your search engine ranking as well as your company reputation. In a recent BrightLocal survey, 68% of respondents said positive reviews make them more likely to use a business. So, a very accessible way to increase revenue is to manage your online reviews on major review sites as well as sites specific to your industry.

There are often opportunities to increase revenue just by leveraging areas of the existing business in new ways.

[Read: A Complete Guide to Managing Online Reviews]

Have you established a trustworthy reputation?

If you’ve proven yourself as a trustworthy subject matter expert in your field or product niche, you may be able to add a revenue stream via affiliate marketing. As an affiliate, you’ll market other business’s products to your customers or the audience of your blog, podcast or YouTube channel. You receive commissions based on sales, leads or clicks. Once established, this can be a low-maintenance, low-cost revenue stream for your business.

Are there areas of your sales process you can improve?

It’s important to continuously review your sales funnel, i.e., the stages of your sales process. How are you doing in capturing new leads, nurturing them and closing sales? When you assess your team’s success at each stage, you may find areas where you are losing potential business. Improve these areas and you increase your revenue.

[Read: How to Build a Sales Funnel for Your Business]

Can you serve your competitors’ customers better than they do?

There is a pie of potential business in your marketplace and one way to increase your share is to take customers from your competitors. When you compare yourself to the competition, do you shine? If so, how are you letting their customers know this? You can connect with them online by visiting your competitors’ social media accounts and messaging customers who post complaints. You can also purchase ads that post on your competitors’ YouTube videos and in the inboxes of their customers. At the end of the day, however, to get their customers to become yours, you’ll have to offer better products, better customer service, or both.

[Read: 6 Strategies to Steal Your Competitors’ Customers]

Now that you’ve stepped back, you can determine what area(s) of your business you can better leverage to increase revenue. Put a plan in place, execute against it, and watch your business grow.

CO— aims to bring you inspiration from leading respected experts. However, before making any business decision, you should consult a professional who can advise you based on your individual situation.

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