SWOT analysis is one of the best strategies corporate organizations use to position themselves in their industry. It’s an acronym for Strength, Weakness, Opportunities, and threats. In this article, you will learn how to do SWOT analysis.
SWOT Analysis Further Explanation
Analyzing your strength is the first step to take during SWOT analysis. Here you will look at the following areas.
- The things your company does well.
- Qualities that separate your brand from competing brands.
- Internal resources like skilled, and knowledgeable staff.
- Tangible assets , etc.
Your weakness is another area you need to analyze when you are conducting a SWOT analysis.
Here you will look at the things your company lacks, the things your competitors do better than you, your resource limitations, unclear unique selling propositions, etc.
When evaluating the opportunities your company has in the industry, you have to consider underserved markets for specific products, few competitors in your area, emerging need for your products and services, press/media coverage of your company.
When analyzing your company’s threat, you have to consider emerging competitors, changing regulatory environment, negative press/media coverage, and changing customer attitudes towards your company.
And once you understand these different concepts, you will know how to do SWOT analysis.
But one thing is certain – if you understand how to do SWOT analysis, you can easily evaluate your company’s project, it doesn’t matter the size of the company.
SWOT Analysis Internal and External Factors
When conducting a SWOT analysis, you need to understand the internal and external factors.
Generally, the strengths and weaknesses of your organization are your internal factors. These factors are results of organizational decisions within the control of your company and its team.
For instance, if your company has a high churn rate, it could be considered as a weakness. And improving a high churn rate is still within your control. That makes it an internal factor.
Just like Internal factors, there are also external factors. For instance, emerging competitors in your industry are considered a threat in your SWOT analysis.
But there’s little or nothing you can do about these competitors. After all, you can’t stop them from doing business.
And because you don’t have control over who becomes your competitor, they are considered as external factors.
While diving the four elements of your SWOT analysis into internal and external factors doesn’t really affect the success of your analysis..
It can help you determine your next move and evaluate how you can control a particular situation.
How to do SWOT Analysis
Here’s a step by step process to conduct a detailed SWOT analysis for your business;
- Brainstorm with your team on the various elements of your SWOT analysis (these are strengths, weakness, opportunities, and threat).
- Try to set up your quadrants – you can use a projector or a white board. You can also use a template.
- Start by analyzing your strengths.
- Follow suit with your weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
- Organize the information collected into a neat and tidy document.
- Send out to the team with notes.
- Organize a second meeting to come up with action items and owners.
Questions to Ask when Evaluating Individual Elements of SWOT Analysis
The following questions will help you determine the strength of your organization.
- What do your customers love about your company?
- Is there anything that your company does better than other companies in your industry?
- What are your most positive brand attributes?
- What are your unique selling propositions?
- Are there any resources at your disposal that your competitors don’t have?
When you answer these questions, you will be able to identify your company’s strengths…
The following questions can help you determine your company’s weaknesses;
- Is there anything your customers dislike about your company or products?
- Is there any problem or complaint that is frequently mentioned in your negative reviews?
- Why do your customers cancel or churn?
- What could your company do better?
- What are your most negative brand attributes?
- Are there obstacles or challenges in your current sales funnel?
- What are the resources your competitors have that you do not have?
Ensure that you answer these questions honestly. The more honest you are at answering these questions, the better you will be able to figure out your company’s weaknesses.
Identifying the opportunities for your brand requires in-depth competitive intelligence research.
You have to know what your competitors are up to and examine the wider economic or business trends that could directly or indirectly impact your company.
When you equip yourself with this information, you will know how to do SWOT analysis like a pro.
Meanwhile, here is a list of questions that will help you identify opportunities for your business…
- How can we improve our sales/customer onboarding/customer support processes?
- What kind of messaging resonates with our customers?
- How can we further engage our most vocal brand advocates?
- Are we effectively allocating departmental resources?
- Which advertising channels exceed our expectations and why?
The last element of SWOT analysis to understand before you know how to do SWOT analysis is threat.
You can start evaluating your threats by deliberately asking a series of questions like the one above.
But it’s better for you to come up with a list of potential threats facing your business without asking questions.
The threats could be branded threats like emerging or established competitors, broader threats like regulatory environments and market volatility, and even internal threats like high staff turnover.