The idea of taking your business from your garage to a much larger facility is not something that is unheard of in our society. Starting from the bottom is a common narrative and one we can see in many big businesses today. Amazon is a perfect example of this. Jeff Bezos started Amazon as an online book business that he ran from his garage. Now it's a multi-billion dollar global corporation.
Eventually, you will need to expand your garage business, and there will be certain things that you need to keep up with demand. Here are four things that you will definitely need once your business outgrows your garage.
A Larger Location
This is the first thing you will need to look for. You have to have somewhere to work from. Location is one of the most critical aspects of any business, especially if customers or clients visit you at your location. You should consider demographic, neighborhood traffic generators, and your competitors' locations.
A new location will mean that you need more equipment to fill it, especially if your business involves packing and shipping products. The list of things you may need can be long. You have to consider everything from tape dispensers to conveyor belts. Of course, the type of products you sell will determine what kind of equipment you need. For example, a conveyor belt needs to fit the size, weight, and type of product you produce. You could choose manual conveyor belts or motorized conveyor belts. You also need to have a plan in mind for what equipment you would want to upgrade to before you actually upgrade.
A bigger space and more equipment generally means that you will need more people to handle all of it. You may even need people to manage the people (human resources) depending on how much you are expanding. You will also need to consider, again, the size of your location because you'll need space for things like a break room/area, storage areas so employees can safely store their personal belongings and parking for employees.
A Marketing Plan
A new and larger location means that you can service more customers. Now is the time to let people know what you're capable of. This is especially important if your business relies on in-store clients for most of its revenue. A good marketing plan will bring new customers in and let old customers know about the change of location and additional services you can offer. In addition, you can also begin to spruce up your web design and branding to ensure that you leave a lasting impression on your customer’s minds.
Along with your marketing plan, make sure you have a production plan. Having a production plan is important. You can see where you have been, where you are in your production process and where it needs to go. With this view of your production, you can plan for improvements that will allow for better efficiency and time management. There are many different processes such as Kaizen that can help you devise and implement a plan for continuous improvement in your production. These processes don't have to be used only for the production aspect of your business but can be used for different departments as needed.
Congrats on being so successful that you have to upgrade your business. Expanding is an exciting time but also requires a lot of work and planning. Use this list to get you moving in the right direction.