Plan for projects and drive your business forward with a great SWOT analysis
Whether you’re just beginning your business journey or you’ve been established for a while, it’s important to see where your strengths and weaknesses lie. One simple way you can do this is to conduct a SWOT analysis.
Keep reading to learn how a SWOT analysis can help your business, then download our printable template at the bottom of the page and create your own.
Why should I conduct a SWOT analysis?
A simple SWOT analysis can be helpful for a business of any size. When you take the time to analyze your strengths and weaknesses, you’ll make it easier to create a realistic action plan that will help you accomplish your goals.
A SWOT analysis help you objectively identify the factors that can affect your business. It will also help you make sound decisions, anticipate problems, and give you the resources you need to take full advantage of potential opportunities.
Avoid mistakes caused by a lack of insight: a SWOT analysis allows you to unbiasedly evaluate strengths and weaknesses. It’ll help you identify which areas you can improve and which opportunities you can maximize, while making you aware of negative factors that might hinder your chances of success.
How do I use a SWOT analysis?
A comprehensive SWOT analysis should be part of your company’s business plan. You can also use a SWOT analysis to evaluate your business before you embark upon a new project, when you encounter an unexpected roadblock, or simply whenever you want to learn how things are going.
What does SWOT stand for?
What works well in your business, and what helps you stand out from the competition.
The things that you maybe don’t do quite so well, and the constraints that your business faces.
This is your chance to dream big! What targets do you hope to reach, and what problems do you hope to solve?
The external obstacles that might prevent you from meeting your goals.
How do I conduct a SWOT analysis?
You’ll find below some broad suggestions you can use to help you fill out each part of your SWOT analysis. For specific projects and objectives, use them as a starting point and adapt them to help you drill down into the details.
To find your strengths, you should identify:
- Your USP (Unique Selling Proposition: what your company does better than anyone else)
- What unique resources you have available to you
- What other people think your strengths are
To identify your weaknesses, consider the following:
- What you feel you do a poor job of
- Where you lack resources
- What others think your weaknesses are
- What internal factors affect your profits
To find your opportunities, think about what possibilities could arise once you have eliminated your weaknesses. This is your time to think big and stretch yourself—the opportunities you list here may not be attainable now, but you’ll give yourself something to work towards. Think about:
- What new trends are catching on
- Where your competitors are letting their customers down
- What new products or services you could launch
Anticipating these external factors early will help you plan ahead and stay flexible if they do occur. Consider:
- New trends you’re not utilizing
- What your competition does better than you
- How changing technology may affect your business
A SWOT analysis is a great resource to have in your marketing toolkit. It can help you create an action plan for projects and challenges of all sizes, as well as help you drive your business forward.
Click here to download our printable SWOT analysis template.
Need help with your SWOT analysis?
We’ll identify opportunities to improve your business, with detailed research, competition analysis and a comprehensive marketing strategy. You can learn more about our marketing consultancy services here.
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