Not to be confused with the verb “to swat” (an action I was increasingly using in late summer as the flies invaded my house), the SWOT analysis came to mind while eradicating my kitchen of the annoying flying creatures. Why? (They do sound similar…)
We need fast, efficient tools for making good decisions. SWOT analysis quickly provides great perspective, from multiple angles. As the remaining months of the year seem to become compressed, the ability to determine the right business decisions seems to get harder. And the idea of making a deep dive, analyzing what to do to increase revenues, seems daunting. There must be a better way….
The acronym stands for:
At MindTools, they describe the process as, “SWOT Analysis helps you to identify your organization’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. It guides you to build on what you do well, address what you’re lacking, seize new openings, and minimize risks. Apply a SWOT Analysis to assess your organization’s position before you decide on any new strategy.”
How & What to Analyze with SWOT
Many use the SWOT analysis to examine their position within the marketplace. By doing so, they can better determine their strategy to gain market share, or to enter a whole new market.
As you’re likely to feel pressed for time too, I thought I’d provide a few, quick ‘n’ easy examples. From there, you can likely run with the ball on the concept.
Many SWOT analyses consist of different topics being reviewed in some of the four categories. But when I perform these analyses for clients, I add a fifth column on the left to identify the topic being reviewed under each category. That way, I’m sure to analyze each topic in all four categories.
SWOT Example #1 – Marketing > Website
In this example, we’re looking at different tactics within a business’ marketing strategy, beginning with its website performance. Here’s a quick look at the evaluation:
- Strengths – Website’s appearance, functionality and user experience is performing well as borne out by Google Analytics’ reporting (represented by 4 stars below).
- Weaknesses – Website could be accepting new client appointments and booking them on a calendar, but it’s not being used yet.
- Opportunities – Implement Calendly, or other appointment software, on the website a.s.a.p. to increase conversion of visitors to appointments.
- Threats – Our competitors are already using appointment-booking software AND the mobile versions of their sites run more smoothly than ours.
Above: Example #1 written in a form of shorthand is easy to digest. Perhaps you prefer smiley or frowny faces?