30 ideas for growing your small business—without changing your product or service

30 ideas for growing your small business without changing your products or services: professional sits and looks optimistically, lost in thought

Small businesses can make major strides without spending a fortune—or changing a single aspect of the products and services they market. Ready to boost your bottom line with a few simple strategic tweaks? Then let’s dive into our list of ideas, which we’ve assembled into the categories below!

Website improvements

1. Update your website content.

Is your website riddled with outdated content? If so, it’s time to do an overhaul! Updating old content and adding new material keeps sites relevant and engaging for visitors. 

While you’re at it, be sure to include SEO strategies such as working keywords into the text and meta tags.

2. Refresh your site's design.

Does your site look professional or sort of, well, amateurish? 

If your website was built by an old pal in exchange for a pizza, maybe it’s time to invest in an upgrade. Today’s easy-to-install templates feature modern looks and compelling, interactive design elements!

3. Make it mobile-friendly.

Have you ever checked out a website on your phone—and it looked terrible? Chances are that the site was made for desktops only and was never optimized for mobile devices. 

What about yours? Pull up your website on your phone or tablet to see how it looks. Ask a couple of friends who use different phone brands than you to do the same. Making your site mobile-friendly will give customers a better impression and will boost your search engine rankings, too!

Marketing and advertising

4. Launch a new marketing campaign.

When was the last time you ran a marketing campaign designed to target specific audiences? 

Get to know your ideal customer avatar, figure out where they hang out online, and then launch a campaign geared directly toward them. Set goals and track the campaign’s results. Tweak it as needed until it’s optimized for maximum impact.

5. Buy Google ads.

We’ve all run internet searches using specific keywords or phrases. And we’ve often seen sponsored ads pop up in the search results. 

Do these paid search ads, also known as pay-per-click (or PPC) ads, work? They can, but you’ll never know if you don’t try for yourself. They can certainly boost a site’s visibility on Google searches and pull in more traffic.

6. Run themed sales.

Who doesn’t love a sale? Offering discounts from normal prices is a time-honored method of attracting new customers. 

Most businesses tend to run sales in conjunction with an event or holiday, so give it a whirl! This tactic allows you to tie your sale into the “theme” of that occasion!

Branding and image

7. Rebrand.

Is your branding a little dated? Maybe it’s time for a refresh to reinvigorate interest in your products or services. 

From a spiffy new logo to an all-out makeover that includes new fonts, color schemes, and mission statements, updated branding means an updated image that can attract new customers for your business.

8. Enhance your business' physical aesthetic.

If you’ve got a brick-and-mortar store or office that customers come into, put yourself in their shoes and take a look around. Does the entryway look inviting and welcoming to foot traffic? Are the waiting or shopping areas clean and professional? 

As needed, spruce things up to improve the physical aesthetic of your business. It could make a world of difference!

9. Improve your product packaging.

How’s your product packaging? Gather feedback from friends, customers, or professional marketers to glean ideas for improvement. 

Sometimes one little packaging element is the deciding factor between a customer picking up an item or skipping it.

Community and partnerships

10. Partner up with other companies.

Done right, business team-ups are an effective way of increasing your potential consumer base fast. The key is finding an appropriate business to collaborate with. 

Ideally, your businesses should complement each other in some natural way—without being in direct competition, of course.

11. Sponsor something locally.

Community involvement is always a nice look for almost any organization. Find a local cause you’d like to get behind and sponsor some of its activities. This is bound to boost your visibility and reputation. 

12. Network at industry events.

Industry events can be major networking opportunities. Make a list of professional organizations related to the business you’re in. Find out when there might be an event they’ll be sponsoring or attending, and book a reservation to go!

Customer engagement

13. Livestream.

If you have a reasonably-sized social media presence (or want to grow one), consider doing weekly live streams to talk about your business and what you can do for customers. 

Live streaming is a fantastic way to engage audiences in real time, responding to questions as they come in.

14. Delight callers and website visitors with Ruby's virtual receptionists.

Many small businesses don’t have the budget for a full-time receptionist or call handler. But a virtual receptionist service (like the one we offer at Ruby) costs a fraction of what you’d pay for an in-house worker. 

Our receptionists integrate into your team so smoothly that callers never know the difference. Not only that, but they’re available 24/7, 365 days a year, delivering outstanding customer experiences and ensuring no call—or potential sale—gets missed.

See how virtual receptionists work.

Get a 10-minute demo of Ruby and see how we answer calls, create connections, and more on behalf of 15,000+ small businesses.

15. Give a behind-the-scenes look.

In today’s era of personalization, consumers don’t like to feel like mere customers. They seek closer relationships with the companies they opt to do business with. 

That’s why so many companies have turned to social media to present their wares in a less polished, more authentic manner. This often includes honest behind-the-scenes looks to show “how the sausage gets made.”

16. Host a free webinar.

Everybody appreciates getting free value-added tips and advice. Why not offer some up through a free, open-to-the-public webinar? 

This concept is similar to the idea of content marketing, where companies offer informative articles or give away free ebooks as a means to attract views (and possibly collect emails). The main difference is that a webinar requires at least some basic audiovisual recording and editing skills.


17. Create a newsletter.

The great thing about email newsletters is that your customers can receive regular updates and news about special deals and discounts directly to their inboxes. 

Will they actually read these emails? Sometimes. The keys to success are to provide info they might actually want—and to not overdo it by spamming them to death.

18. Blog more.

Keep your website updated regularly by publishing engaging, share-worthy articles. 

Once they’re up, post links to them across various media (such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Quora, etc.), as well. This will enhance your SEO, boost traffic, and potentially lead to more business.

19. Offer free instructional content.

Share your expertise through how-to videos or DIY guides related to your products or services. 

When users browse the internet looking for answers, your site may be the one that comes up to help them out. Over time, this will naturally boost your site’s search engine results page ranking.

Loyalty and referral programs

20. Develop a loyalty program.

As Lending Tree points out, “With inflation soaring, half of Americans think loyalty programs are more important than ever.” 

So why not reward your repeat customers with discounts, exclusive offers, or points to encourage them to keep coming back?

21. Start a referral program.

Referral programs are another way to reward existing customers while incentivizing them to bring in new customers. 

There are many proven benefits to referral programs, not least of which is the fact that “83% of consumers trust recommendations from friends and family over other forms of advertising,” per Nielsen.  

Customer service

22. Get better at customer service.

88% of businesses report that their customers “have higher expectations than they did in previous years,” per Hubspot

One of the things they expect? Stellar customer service. They want it fast, they want it personalized, and they’ll give their business to whoever can provide what they want. Commitment to being that business for them!

How does your customer service stack up?

Have 10 minutes? In this interactive quiz, we’ll ask you quick questions about your business. At the end, you’ll get personalized results with an overall profile and score, how you perform in different categories of customer experience, and steps to take to improve your customer satisfaction. 

23. Expand your payment options.

If we had to guess, we’d say your business takes cash or credit. Maybe checks. But what about other popular payment methods, like PayPal, Apple Pay, Venmo, Zelle, or even cryptocurrencies? 


24. Streamline your internal processes.

Every organization in every industry grapples with inefficiencies in the workplace. Some of them are so massive in scope that they hurt the company’s bottom line. 

Time is money. Every minute you rescue from being wasted is time you can spend growing your business. Find the operational areas where inefficiencies can be reduced. Consider automating repetitive progress with software integrations like Zapier.

25. Adopt green practices.

More and more consumers are becoming eco-conscious—and they look to do business with companies that share their values. 

Adopting more sustainable and eco-friendly business practices is a great way to reduce your environmental footprint while appealing to like-minded shoppers.

Digital presence and outreach

26. Engage on social media.

At least 68% of Americans use social media, according to Pew Research. If your business isn’t on platforms like Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, etc., then jump on that as soon as you finish reading this article! 

If you are using social media, how actively engaged are you with your audience? The key to success with social media is to be social!

27. Collaborate with influencers.

Millions of people imagine themselves being social media influencers. But only a relatively small percentage really crack the code. 

Find ones who have and who align with your brand values. Reach out to inquire about collaborations, or ask about sponsoring some of their content in exchange for a shoutout in one of their videos. 

Data and research

28. Conduct market research.

Too many small businesses struggle because they don’t spend enough time researching markets

How can you hope to sell anything if you don’t know explicit details about who your target buyers are, what they’re looking for, what they’re willing to pay—and who your competition is? 

Stay ahead of the curve by routinely digging into these details so you can better tailor your marketing strategies or your offerings.


29. Claim or update your business listings.

Your online business information needs to be as accurate as possible across all platforms, especially your Google Business profile. Don’t have a Google Business account? Then it’s time to go claim your business and make one! 

Other places to consider making a business account include LinkedIn, Facebook, Yellowpages.com, Foursquare, Apple Maps, Yelp, and Bing Places.

30. Get a vanity number.

If your business gets a lot of phone calls—or you want it to get more calls—maybe a vanity number is a good option. 

Vanity phone numbers are simply designed to make it easier for customers to remember them. Grasshopper is an easy way to snag an affordable 1-800 number that’s unique to your business. Or we can provide you one when you sign up for Ruby.

To learn more, check out our blogs: What your phone number says about your business and How to get a free business phone number.

And for even more business growth ideas and tips, visit the Ruby blog and subscribe to our monthly newsletter, Minutes!