Knowing When to Expand Your Small Business

Business is a world of peaks and valleys. Fluctuations are normal. Because of that, it can be difficult to know when it is a good time to expand.  However, there are several indicators that can help entrepreneurs know when the time is right to grow.


The first sign that a business is ready to expand is steady profitability.[1] Be honest with yourself when it comes to these numbers. A short-term spike in numbers could be related to the time of year or a specific circumstance.[1] For example, many stores have been selling more toilet paper than usual in recent months. That doesn’t mean the demand will hold.


The second sign can often be that customers will tell you.[1] This can happen in a couple different ways. People may inquire about other services or even ask why you don’t offer them.[1] Or they may tell you how far they drive to use your business.[1] In cases like these, it’s prudent to go ahead and do some research about the market.[1] What other businesses are you competing with? What services do they offer? How many locations do they have? What kinds of communities are they located in?

It can be hard to take the leap to expansion during an economic downturn,[2] even when the numbers look good. Looking at success stories from prior recessions can be helpful.[2][3] We know downturns can reveal interesting gaps in the market. Companies as diverse as Burger King, Uber and Trader Joe’s got their start during economic recessions.[3] As long as there’s real demand, and you’re doing good research, there’s no reason to let an economic drop-off hold you back.[1][2] Of course, a recession can also make it more difficult to source traditional business loans.[2] That’s one reason that equipment financing is a great option.

Equipment financing is a great way for businesses to grow. With equipment financing, there’s no down payment.[4] The application is simple and approvals can take as little as 24 hours.[1] Financing can be used for previously owned equipment in good condition; this can be a huge savings over buying new. Equipment financing is also 100% tax deductible up to $1 million under section 179 of the IRS tax code.[5] The only requirement is that the equipment be put into service during that tax year. Equipment financing is a great way to grow with limited risk during a challenging time.