Business ideas emerge daily. Some great, some good, some just ridiculous. Do you have a potentially feasible business idea for a new business?
Unfortunately, many people believe starting a business is a mysterious process. They know they want to start a business but don’t know the first steps.
But before we get started, let’s clear up one point:
People always wonder if this is an excellent time to start their business idea. The fact is, there’s never a wrong time to launch a business.
It’s obvious why it’s wise to launch in intense economic times. People have money and are looking for ways to spend it. But launching in tough or uncertain economic times can be just as brilliant. If you do your homework, there’s a need for the business you’re starting. Because many people are reluctant to launch in tough times, your new business has a better chance of getting noticed. And, depending on your idea, in a down economy, there is often equipment (or even entire businesses) for sale at bargain prices.
Read more about how to survive in a recession from our article Business Survival Strategies ― 15 Tips to Survive the SA Recession. Perhaps your business has failed. How do you deal with this? Read our advice in our article What Will People Think of Me Now that my Startup Company Failed?
If you’ve been in business for a while, it can be challenging to develop new business ideas. But as they say, there is no risk, no reward. If you don’t take risks, you won’t get rewards. The only way to grow your business is by thinking of new ways. It’s challenging and scary to think of business ideas that might not work, but you’ll never know if you don’t try.
That being said, coming up with innovative business ideas isn’t easy. Most people struggle to develop new ideas when they need them most — when they already have so many on their plate. But the good news is that there are ways to find them. Here are 15 tips on how to come up with new business ideas in South Africa.
Need to fund your new business? Look at this article; There are Various Startup Business Funding Options. Here’s our Top 10 List.
Business Ideas South Africa #1: Watch for New Platforms and Technologies
New technologies, platforms and ideas emerge all the time. Look for these developments and consider how they might fit into your company plan. For example, artificial intelligence is growing in adoption and usage, and as a business owner, you can consider how AI can be applied to your business. You don’t need to be directly involved in creating these platforms; you need to see their growing adoption in the marketplace and consider how to apply them to your business.
New technologies are also a good source of new business ideas because they allow you to be on the cutting edge of a new trend. For example, if you see new blockchain technology gaining popularity, you can implement it before your competitors and create new products and services that utilise it. You’ll have the edge over your competitors because they’ll need to see the technology adopted before using it.
Business Ideas South Africa #2: Ask Employees or Customers
Another way to generate new business ideas is to ask your employees and customers what they need or want. You can do this during meetings, while on the phone with customers, or by using a poll on your website. By asking customers what they need, you can come up with new ideas that bring value to them and, as a result, your business. You can also ask employees what they want to see in the company.
Doing so will help you understand how to improve your business to make it a better and more enjoyable workplace. And benefits like these will help your business attract and retain great employees who can help your company grow.
Business Ideas South Africa #3: Bottom-Up Analysis
Another way to think of new business ideas is to start at the bottom. What do the essential parts of your business need? What do they require to function? When developing new business ideas for your startup, you should ask these questions. What do you need to do your job correctly?
Asking yourself these questions will help you develop new ideas that could help improve your business. For example, if you’re in the marketing department of your business, you might use social media. You may have a strategy for using social media, but you might not know how those posts are created. You can look into social media management platforms like Hootsuite or Sprout Social and see if they can help make your life easier.
These platforms can help you analyse your customer behaviour on social media, create better posts, and save time by scheduling your posts to go out automatically. This is just one example of how you can bottom-up approach finding new business ideas.
Business Ideas South Africa #4: Change Something in Your Business
Another way to think of new business ideas is to change something in your business. For example, you might be running your business the same way since the beginning. But occasionally, you must change things so your business can continue growing. To do this, you need to think of new business ideas to change your business.
For example, suppose your company has been using email marketing for years, and you find it isn’t as effective as it once was. In that case, you can try a new marketing technique, such as native advertising on Facebook or Instagram. These social networks are viral and are used by many businesses; however, they still don’t have as much customer data as email. You can try new things within your business that you can use to generate new business ideas.
Business Ideas South Africa #5: Ask Yourself, “What’s currently Working?”
Another way to develop new ideas for your business is to think about what’s currently working. You may be so focused on fixing what isn’t working that you overlook the things. This can help generate new business ideas because you look at your business differently. You’re focused on what’s working and not what isn’t.
This can help you develop new ideas that focus on what works and will help your business grow as well as possible. For example, if you’re in the restaurant business and notice how busy you are at lunchtime, you may want to consider adding more menu items that people can quickly eat while on the go. This will serve your customers, and it will also help you find new business ideas that are currently working in your favour.
Business Ideas in South Africa #6: Leverage Customer Behaviour
Another way to develop new business ideas is to look at customer behaviour and see where to leverage it to benefit your business. You can do this by paying close attention to how your customers behave and their choices. You can also observe and interact with your customers to find out what they like and dislike and why they choose.
Doing so will help you find new business ideas that will help your business grow and thrive. For example, if you’re in the retail clothing business, you can see that online shopping is popular. You can then think of new ways to leverage this behaviour, such as with an online store. You can also see how customers pay for cash or debit cards. You can then use this information to find new business ideas and find ways to accept these payment methods.
Business Ideas in South Africa #7: Brainstorm with Your Team
Another way to develop new business ideas is to brainstorm with your team. You may have a group or employees with ideas for new business ventures. If so, you can have a brainstorming session to help develop new business ideas. You can also host brainstorming sessions with people outside of your company as well.
You’re likely to come up with more ideas when you brainstorm with a group of people than you would on your own. Plus, it’s another way to get people engaged and excited about your company’s future. For example, if you work in marketing and want to come up with new business ideas, you can host a brainstorming session with your team members to help develop ideas. You can also host brainstorming sessions with people outside of your company as well.
Brainstorming sessions are great because they get people engaged and excited about your company’s future. In addition, it’s a great way to get and develop new business ideas.
Business Ideas in South Africa #8: Get Inspired by Art, Music and Culture
Another way to develop new business ideas is to look at art, music, or culture and see what new ideas those industries are coming up with. These industries always come up with new ideas, products, and services. They’re constantly changing and improving existing technologies and trying new ones. So you can look at these industries to find new business ideas for your company.
For example, if you work in the fashion industry and want new business ideas, you can look at the art world for inspiration. You can look at new paintings, sculptures, or photographs and see what new ideas those artists are coming up with. You can also look at the music industry and see what new songs are being released. Finally, you can also look at the technology used in these industries and see what new ideas they bring.
Business Ideas in South Africa #9: Look at Your Competitors
Another way to think of new business ideas is to look at your competitors. You may be so focused on your business that you overlook what your competitors do. You can use your competitors as inspiration for new business ideas. You can also use your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses to find new ways to improve your business. You can also use your competitors to find new business ideas. You may not be competing with them, but you can still look at what
Business Ideas in South Africa #10: Browse Top Sellers
Look at websites such as Amazon and Takealot to understand what is selling. If you have a product or service in mind, look around to see whether this particular item will sell. The first thing on your list is seeing if the category you are considering exists on this website. If it is, your next step is to check whether this product category has many competitors. The more companies there are, the bigger the demand for the product is.
Best Business Ideas #11: Use Google Trends
Google Trends can help you get a bigger picture of the business idea you are considering. By checking out the latest trends, you will quickly validate the demand, which is a crucial factor in your decision about starting the business.
Best Business Ideas #12: Build a Minimum Viable Product
A minimum viable product or MVP is the simplest way to check your business idea. According to Eric Ries, an entrepreneur and author of “The Lean Startup,” an MVP is the simplest form of an idea you can sell as a product. A simple version of your product for testing in the early development process is crucial if you want to make the necessary changes before the significant investment.
More about Lean Startup Methodology:
The Lean Startup provides a scientific approach to creating and managing startups and getting the desired product to customers. The Lean Startup method teaches you how to drive a startup – how to steer, turn when to grow a business with maximum acceleration and perseverance. It is a principled approach to new product development.
Too many startups begin with an idea for a product they think people want. They then spend months, sometimes years, perfecting that product without ever showing the product, even in a very rudimentary form, to the prospective customer. When they fail to reach broad customer uptake, it is often because they never spoke to potential customers and determined whether or not the product was impressive. The startup fails when customers ultimately communicate, through their indifference, that they don’t care about the idea.
Using the Lean Startup approach, entrepreneurs can create order, not chaos, by providing tools to test a vision continuously. Then, when that product is ready to be distributed widely, it will already have established customers.
Best Business Ideas #13: Build a List of Customers
Use various tools and methods to build a list of potential customers that will purchase your product or service. It will help you determine if your business is worth trying and will prove very beneficial once you decide to launch.
Best Business Ideas #14: Use Landing Pages to Check Your Business Idea
Create a landing page detailing the new product or idea and run a Google Ads campaign. This way, you can test how well you can reach the target market and convert them into your customers. Conversion rates are the best way to establish how your numbers will work with people and if these numbers are viable.
Best Business Ideas #15: Ask People to Pay
If you test your product or service on friends and acquaintances or even people you randomly found on the Web, and they are very likely to give you an email address or subscribe to your website. However, the best way to establish if they are interested in a product is if you ask them to pay you money for the product or service.
Airbnb Co-founder, Brian Chesky, said, “If we tried to think of a good idea, we wouldn’t have been able to think of a good idea. So you just have to find the solution to a problem in your life.”
If you’re like Brian and you’ve already thought about a solution for a problem you encounter in your life — or you’re on the path to doing so — then starting a small business may be in your future. It may also be for you if you dream of losing your 9-to-5 job for the last time and becoming your boss. Please read this and other Startup and Entrepreneurial Advisory Stories in our Weekly Blog.