At some point in our lives we’ll all need the help of a quality Locksmiths, and there are lots out there, so how do you stand out in the crowd? A customer-centric business with high quality workmanship are the key to success and should be the focus of your business plan.
What it Takes to Start a Locksmith Business
Due to the nature of the business, and potential for illegal activity, even small locksmith businesses need to be aware of Government regulations.
If you’re planning to start a locksmith business, then attending a course and getting the correct licenses and registrations is a must before you even begin registering your business.
When starting your locksmith business, having a simple but effective business plan will help you start on track and put your best foot forward from day one.
When writing a business plan, don’t forget to include an overview of the industry. For example, knowing the role of the locksmith is to install, repair, rebuild and adjust locks and security systems of properties well help you understand the expectations that people will have from your company. The success of a locksmith business is normally tied to the performance of commercial and residential property markets as this is where the majority of the business comes. Getting across this will you understand the trends in your own business. Understanding the core requirements of your target customers is also extremely important, so build a profile or ‘persona’ of a typical customer to help you understand them, their needs and pain points.
When writing your locksmith business plan, this is where you write the details of your business. Including how it was founded, details of the licensing and registration of your business and how you will be screening your employees. Business goals here are also a must therefore do not leave that out. Include details about your personal experience in the industry, along with the other founders and the business objectives and financial funding.
Products and Services Offering
Highlighting what your products and services are will inform anybody who needs to see your business plan for finance, investment or regulation reasons. By being clear with what you are offering, it will give you and your team direction in the skills that you will need in potential staff and/or training that needs to be done. Understanding your products and services is integral for the team from top to bottom and you need to truly highlight the functionality and benefits of your products and services.
Mission and Vision Statement
Every business needs a mission and/or vision statement, and the locksmith industry is no different. Knowing what your plans are and the underlying ethos in your company is important for those with business interests, future employees and keeping your business on track with what the objectives are. Representing your core values and mission statement is important for reflecting how you wish to be known in the industry and what type of business objectives you’ll come up with.
As the heading suggests, this is where you outline the structure of your business. This includes the management hierarchy, the type of business it is (public or private company) and an outline of how the structure may change or be able to support future growth. It also includes the team and roles and how the business operations are optimised on a daily basis.
Job Roles and Responsibilities
This is a great guide for not just employees to check back on, but it is vital for the recruitment process and to support the business structure. With everybody having an outline position and role, nothing gets missed and employees know exactly what their responsibilities are, supporting the outlined business structure as well. Team members can be abreast of the business goals and objectives and accomplish these through coaching and upskilling.
A SWOT analysis being performed for every business is vital. Used to identify strengths and weaknesses in the business along with opportunities and threats, understanding this about your business will help deal with competition, strategic planning and making decisions for the business overall. This is also important to show potential financiers and investors. Strengths highlight what gives the business advantages over competition whereas weaknesses are highlighted to discuss the relative disadvantages (before determining how to resolve these and increase performance and profitability). Opportunities give an insight into how the business can grow and threats are what can disrupt the overall growth or running of the business.
The purpose of the market analysis is to see how your business will compete in the market, analyse trends and the industry to ensure that your business has the best possible chance of not just surviving, but also growing in the current climate and how they can adapt and predict any changes.
While it’s good to have an understanding of the market for locksmiths overall, if you have a particular service that your business offers, it’s important to understand your target market. Knowing how to educate them, engage them and having strategies in place is a vital part of your business. For most locksmith businesses, the main target market is residential and commercial properties as well as vehicles.
Sales and Marketing Strategy
Just like everything in a business, having strategies in place is the one way to ensure growth. Sales and marketing need to be carefully planned to make sure your business gets the exposure it needs. Strategically-planning marketing campaigns and promotional activities is integral and having a yearly calendar of promotions to follow is wise, including warm and cold calling and following up on client engagement with your marketing.
From analysing the market as well as the possible results of your sales and marketing strategy, having a realistic forecast of your sales over the next few years is essential for investors, financers and just to ensure that your business is on the right track. This should include a breakdown as well of the where the income and sales will come from for each product and service.
Publicity and Advertising Strategy
From social media to tradeshows, getting your businesses name out there is important for sales and marketing. Sponsorships, advertisements, corporate exposure- if you plan to utilise any of these advertising strategies, then carefully planning the budget and expected income will help your overall business plan and marketing.
Financial Projections and Costing
While it’s nice to predict the expected income that you will have with your well-executed business plan, factoring in and understanding what your running costs and overall expenses are will give you a realistic picture of where your business will be sitting. This is why you must include this in your business plan.
Sustainability and Expansion Strategy
One of the biggest downfalls of any business is expanding too quickly and failing to sustain the services that they have established, this is why it is important to plan for expansion before the option is on the table. This will also ensure that you won’t ‘bite off more than you can chew’, so you can grow and expand your business in a well thought out and sustainable way.
Success means investing time in the planning of how your business will operate and grow. This simple business plan we’ve shared is a great starting point that can be adapted and modified as you go. The better you understand your market from the offset the better chance you will have to succeed.
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