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The business world has undergone extreme changes in the last five years. Overcoming COVID-19 challenges and finding the WFH balance with employees and customers whilst managing economic waves has left its mark.

It has been a time of turbulence and resilience building for many.

As a business owner, identifying and adapting to emerging trends may be the answer to bolstering your company’s success further.

Ensure you give your clients what they need and allocate resources to where they perform best by following the trends.

An outstanding growth idea, when implemented at the incorrect time, would yield no benefit. You can ensure your business expands at the right time to optimise profit by utilising trends.

In business, a trend is a gradual change in a process, output, or condition. The general direction in which something changes, develops, or veers can lead to a movement.

Why Are Trends Important in Business?

In any industry, trends are pivotal in shaping the business landscape. Staying on top of emerging market trends provides several advantages, including:

Maintaining a Competitive Advantage

Identifying and adopting emerging trends ahead of competitors can give your business a competitive edge.

We already have fridges that can display their content on your phone and connect to the internet for recipes. Imagine you develop a way for the refrigerator to know when fruit and veggies are about to go off. Is there a way to communicate with the homeowner? They could see when the avocado was finally ripe without missing it!

Whether incorporating new technologies or offering innovative services, being at the forefront of trends can attract more customers and boost your market share.

Customer Satisfaction

Meeting the changing demands of customers is vital for maintaining their satisfaction.

Consumers’ expectations change over time. Information is more freely accessible now, too. Therefore, by the time the client reaches you, they may already have researched what they are looking for.

Let’s use Google as an example. Many people fall into the trap of googling their symptoms and trying to ‘self-diagnose’. It may not always result in a death sentence, but the rise in telehealth and virtual healthcare services has made access to a professional much easier since the pandemic. Saving time and travel for those without the capacity. Some pharmacies now have an app where a digital script can be uploaded, and the medicine can be picked up with an ID.

Embracing trends that align with customer preferences and expectations ensures that your offerings remain relevant and appealing.

Business Growth

Following emerging trends open up new opportunities for growth. Businesses that adapt quickly to changing needs are more likely to expand into new markets and attract a broader customer base.

As consumer tastes change, new opportunities may open up. If you know these changes, you can position your business to take advantage of them. This can help you expand your customer base and grow your business.

As we have seen, environmental awareness has significantly impacted consumer choices. Identifying how this trend impacts your business and utilising ‘green policies’ will make you a more likely option for clients who share this value.

How to Identify Emerging Industry Trends?

Effectively identifying emerging industry trends in your business requires a systematic approach. Whether looking at trend data within your practices or benchmark data to compare your performance to your competitors, you need numerical data to compare.

You can compare data of the same product or service from last year to now or compare different products and services to each other simultaneously.

However, there must be a consistent measure of data to compare and accurately analyse trends.

Here are some strategies to help you stay abreast of the latest developments:

Market Research:

Conduct regular market research to understand current consumer behaviour, demands, and preferences related to your industry.

You can ask your customers for feedback or read industry reports to identify patterns and potential trends. Who are your most loyal customers? Why do they keep coming back? What do they use your products for?

These answers will assist you in aligning your business practice to the customers who are repetitively buying your products. They may also produce a more profitable perspective as others know how your product can meet a need.

For example, an apple farmer can not have the limited view that customers only buy apples to eat as they are. They can better communicate the value of their product if they know the sweeter apples are believed to make juice, while a more muted flavoured apple can be enhanced in a pie.

Industry Publications and Conferences:

Stay connected with industry publications, forums, and conferences. These platforms offer insights into upcoming technologies, best practices, and market shifts.

Are there newsletters you could subscribe to for information and insights into the industry? Annual conferences act as a source of networking, too.

Social Media and Online Forums:

Social media and online forums are valuable real-time information sources about emerging trends. Join related groups and follow industry influencers to stay informed about the latest developments.

Following relevant hashtags may expand your feed to international trends before they impact your local area.

Competitor Analysis:

Monitor your competitors’ activities and strategies. Identify any changes or innovations they are implementing that indicate emerging trends.

They were returning to the impact environmental factors have on business. Having an idea and putting it into practice are vastly different. Therefore, how do your competitors make themselves more environmentally friendly? How do they communicate that to their customers?

There may be something your business does without understanding how impactful it could be if communicated differently. Using all electric devices and rechargeable batteries and recycling leftover materials may be things you do without thinking. Still, your competition advertises them as reducing their carbon footprint.

Seek Expert Advice:

Collaborate with industry experts, consultants, or Virtual CFO services to gain valuable insights into market trends and potential growth areas.

Upskilling employees and partnering with other businesses may present an alternate perspective, such as how the actions are communicated to the public. Sometimes, a neutral party may see opportunities you don’t. They know how to streamline a process or improve a technique.

Virtual CFOs also compile management reports on different aspects of the business so that trade business owners can make informed decisions. They can identify what service makes the most money and where staff spend the most time and know the seasonal impacts for forecasting and cash flow management.

The Consequences of Not Tracking Trends in Business

Failing to keep up with emerging market trends can have severe consequences on your business, including but not limited to:

Loss of Relevance: Outdated practices and offerings can make your business less appealing to customers, leading to declining sales and market share.

Missed Opportunities: Not identifying emerging trends means missing out on potential opportunities for growth and expansion.

Increased Costs: Ignoring trends can lead to inefficiencies and higher costs as your business may continue using outdated technologies and methods.

Competitive Disadvantage: Your competitors who stay updated on emerging trends might outperform you, taking away your customers and contracts.

Financial Strain: The inability to adapt to market changes may lead to financial difficulties and put your business at risk of insolvency.

How Can Virtual CFO Services Assist in Identifying Trends?

AFP Accounting’s Virtual CFO services can be instrumental in helping business owners identify emerging trends and make informed decisions.

Our professionals bring expertise and objectivity to your financial planning and strategy. Here’s how they can assist you:

  • Data Analysis: Virtual CFOs can analyse financial and market data to identify patterns and potential trends that might impact your business.
  • Strategic Planning: They can help align your business goals with the identified trends, enabling you to create a focused and effective growth strategy.
  • Risk Assessment: Virtual CFOs can evaluate the risks associated with adopting specific trends, allowing you to make informed choices that minimise potential downsides.
  • Financial Forecasting: By assessing the financial implications of emerging trends, they can provide accurate forecasts to guide your budgeting and resource allocation.
  • Performance Tracking: These professionals can continuously monitor the success of your trend adoption, ensuring that your business remains on the right track.

Build A More Resilient Business And Prepare For Success

Identifying emerging market trends is essential for the success of businesses in Australia.

By keeping a close eye on industry developments and seeking the assistance of Virtual CFO services, you can stay ahead of the competition.

Ensure customer satisfaction and secure the financial future of your business by adapting to the changing industry.

Embracing trends and undertaking strategic growth will empower your business to thrive and overcome any challenges that may come your way.

If you want to set your business apart from the competition and stay ahead, contact our accounting team at enquiries@afpaccounting.com.au or call (02) 7804 1849.

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