eCommerce Business Resolutions for 2014

How did your 2013 go? If you’re like most business owners it was probably a bit of up and a touch of down, as everything from the economic recovery to health care to government shutdowns occurred this year. Hopefully next year won’t be quite as turbulent and will be a little more predictable.

Speaking of 2014, it’s definitely time to think about your New Year’s resolutions. While your personal goals may be to get fit, stop smoking, and finally see your favorite uncle again even though he lives in the middle of the woods, your business goals will be quite different. However, the rules for choosing your goals work the same.

What are these rules, and how do you pick your resolutions? Here are some tips to get you started.

Pick a Happy Medium Between Attainable and Pie in the Sky

Most advice you’ll see on the web about picking your New Year’s resolutions is to come up with some sensible ones you know you can achieve. For example, if you want to lose weight, you don’t want to say you’ll lose 100 pounds your first month. It’s unattainable and will only cause frustration.

However, only setting 100% realistic goals can cause problems as well. If you don’t shoot for the stars a little you may get bored. Also, if you get in the habit of going for things you know you can achieve, not reaching a goal can be doubly frustrating and set you back even more.

Try to find a middle ground with your resolutions, both personal and business. If you want to expand your company’s reach to international markets but don’t think you can make it, don’t give up on expanding at all. Try narrowing your goal, such as by targeting one country or international region, instead.

Focus on One Big One Rather Than 20 Little Ones

We’ve all heard the cliché about the gyms that are crowded in January but quickly die out by early February. Guess what? It’s not really a cliché – sign up and see for yourself. January is slammed with folks hoping to make the most of the New Year; a month later, most of those people will be gone.

Their big problem is they also made resolutions to do so many other things – spend more time with the kids, maybe, or go see the world. They’re trying to focus on too many things, which means a few of those resolutions will have to go when the chips are down.

Instead of picking a handful of resolutions, focus on one you know you’ll put 110% in to. Maybe it’s boosting customer service, figuring out your social media, or adding more products. Whatever the case, you’ll have a better chance of completing it if you’re not pulled in 20 directions.

Realize Not All Goals Will Work

It’s hard to admit, but not everything is suited for us…or our business. You can set a goal to make dinners for the homeless every night, but eventually this could catch up to you as your personal and business life suffers. You can resolve to spread your business to a brand new niche, but if the niche doesn’t fit, you can’t just make it work out of sheer will.

Having big goals and going after them is noble, but sometimes you just have to call it a day. The worst thing you can do is to set a goal and try to accomplish it no matter how badly it fails. At some point you have to step back and think if what you’re doing makes sense for your business. If it doesn’t, and that niche just does not care about your product, it’s time to move on and find a new resolution to focus on.

What is your #1 New Year’s resolution for your business?