Raise your hand if you want to grow your business but don't have the money to spend hundreds of dollars doing it.
Today we're sharing 13 simple ways to grow your business without spending a dime. Keep reading and start growing!
Blogging is a great tool for growing your fashion business. Not only does it improve your website SEO but it gives you a platform to share your story/connect with your audience and helps keep the momentum going about your business by giving people a reason to continuously visit your website. Keep in mind, you don't have to blog every day or even every other day. Instead, focus on using your blog to provide value and inspiration to your audience.
From how-to tutorials, styling tips, sneak peeks before a new product launch, new arrivals or gift guides, there are many different ways you can use your blog to promote your business and continuously drive traffic to your website.
Community, is an important piece to growing your business. Your community is what creates hype about your brand and draws attention. It's their comments, testimonials, reviews, purchases and likes that entice other people to want to check out your product and potentially buy. An easy way to create community is through social media. Use your platforms to talk with your followers. Instead of just 'liking" photos, leave authentic and relevant comments and respond to all comments left for you. Create a dialogue between you and your audience by asking questions in your captions and encouraging your followers to tag their friends.
Instagram is a pretty powerful tool for fashion brands. Take a look at your current Instagram feed as a whole and ask yourself: “would I follow this account?” “Would I buy from is account?” “Does my feed currently represent my business in the way that I want?” If the answer is no, delete pictures that are no longer on brand and work on creating a visually branded IG feed.
Do all the links and buttons on your website lead to the correct pages? Are all of your product pages active? Do you have any typos on your about page? Go through your website checking for broken links, typos, and anything that may need to be changed. Ask a friend or colleague to take a look at your website and give you feedback. Is anything confusing? Can they easily navigate around your site? Is it mobile/device friendly?
It's a good practice to regularly update your website with relevant pictures, new copy, and material. Not only does this help with SEO but it also shows potential customers that your business is active. It also gives your people a reason to continuously revisit your website.
If you haven’t looked into SEO for your website, it’s time to start. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and essentially just means how to get traffic to your website organically (aka “free”) from search results on search engines like Google or Yahoo. As I mentioned, blogging and consistently updating your website are two easy ways to improve SEO. Adding social media feeds to your website is also great for keeping your website consistently changing.
Your email list can be an important piece to your business. Unlike other platforms where you have to “sell” your audience, your email list is special because the people that have signed up are already interested and excited about your business and they want to know more. They want to be informed about what you’re doing and what’s going on with you. Not to mention having an active email list encourages repeat website visits and potential sales.
Something to keep in mind, although you want to use your email list to tell your community when you have new sales and products, you don’t want to only use your list to sell. If you only use your list to sell, your community will come to expect that so they won’t open emails unless they’re in a position to buy.
A good rule of thumb is the 80/20 rule. Share message driven content 80% of the time and sell 20% of the time.
As a business owner, you need to know where you stand financially at all times. You need to know what's coming in and what's going out. So you sold three dresses at a local pop-up. Awesome! But if you're selling the dresses for less than what it cost you to make them you're losing money. Managing your finances can seem intimidating and at times it almost feels better to just ignore them. But, you simply can't if you want to take your business full-time. Calculating your business expenses, your break-even-point, etc will only help you succeed. Need some help? Here’s a blog post on basic budgeting for designers.
Feedback is an incredibly valuable tool for growing your business. As an industry friend or #bizbestie for their opinion. Send a friendly email to a past customer and ask them for feedback about their experience. Use your email list or social media platforms to conduct a survey.
Networking is another great marketing tool that many people often forget. Your network is one of your most powerful assets. Why? Because it opens up the possibility of new opportunities being sent your way, as well as access to resources and endless opportunities to collaborate. Networking isn’t about collecting contacts, it’s about growing relationships. Grab coffee with someone in your network once or twice a month. You never know what may come from that coffee date.
When someone lands on your website, you want to eliminate all possible reasons for them not to buy. Create a FAQ page that explains your return policy, shipping policy, and any other questions customers may have. If you currently have a FAQ page, can anything be added? Is it confusing to read? Have you added any new policies since you last updated it? Is it easy to find?
Make a list of what's working in your business and what could use some adjustments. What areas of your business could you improve? From this list, you'll be able to see the things you should continue doing and where you can make adjustments to better those areas.
Having a clear vision of what you want is monumental to seeing success in your business. Simply saying you want to be “successful” is not enough. You really need to get specific. You need to have a clear vision of what your business is and what you want to achieve.
Your vision gives you focus and allows you to create goals and then strategies that will get you to where you want to be. For everything you do, you should have a goal. The point of having a goal is that it gives you something to work towards but most importantly, it gives you an actionable to-do list so that you can achieve your vision. Get specific about your vision and about your goals. Get specific and be honest about what it will truly take for you to make your vision a reality. Then, create strategies and processes to make it happen.
Sometimes, we can get so caught up in trying to make money and get sales that we forget why we started our business in the first place. The stress of trying to "make it" can cause the business we once loved to no longer be fun or enjoyable. The life of an entrepreneur can be uncertain at times but I strongly believe that one of the keys to success is staying true to why you started. Take some time to fall back in love with why you started your business and allow that passion to motivate and inspire you to grow your business.