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Top 10 reasons why startups fail - Bright Humans

Top 10 reasons why startups fail

1. Lack of demand

You’ve created a business that has no demand. Many startups make this mistake: being product/service-led rather than market-led. No amount of clever market is going to help. Identify the demand before starting the business.

2. Running out of cash

People never buy as quickly as you would like and it always takes longer to reach break-even than you think. Without cash to pay the staff and creditors, businesses are forced to close.

3. Flawed team

Your team lacks the necessary skills; are too dependent on one person; or have personalities that clash. You can also have toxic individuals who can  destroy a business from the inside.

4. Too much competition

Cheaper imports, competitors with deeper pockets, razor-thin margins – can all squeeze earnings to the point that a business is no longer viable. Consider being a big fish in a small pond or having a business which has a tactical advantage over the competition.

5. Getting the price wrong

Price too high and people don’t buy. Price too low and you have an unsustainable business (hidden behind the false comfort of frequent sales). 

6. Poor product

Be honest. Is your product a dud? Would it be your first choice? Do you think customers would be happy with their purchase? Sales is easy once you have a product you truly believe in.

7. Wrong business model

Some businesses are sound but choose the wrong model. They’re P2P when they should be a marketplace; or they’re an e-commerce store when they should be a subscription-based. You could be on the right path but in the wrong vehicle.

8. Poor customer service

Customers may forgive a poor product but they will never forgive poor service because service is a personal, emotional thing. When a customer is treated badly, they feel insulted and tell the world. Every business is in the customer service business. Remember the lifetime-value of your customers and treat them accordingly.

9. Working on things that don’t matter

You spend most of your time doing things that don’t drive your business forward. You’re busy but not effective. Each day, identify 3-5 things that will grow your business and concentrate only on those.

10. Weak marketing

You need traffic, you need visitors, you need brand awareness. These things don’t happen overnight and they also need to be sustained. You have to keep your marketing funnel topped up with content, lead capture, email funnels and more.

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