In 2018 a lot of newer businesses have experienced rapid growth, particularly in the internet and technology industries. These companies are capitalising on the increasing digitisation of our lives, and in some instances finding completely new ways of doing business and making money.
The following companies almost all use the internet in some capacity, whether they provide web based services or just use it to advertise and sell their products. The one that doesn’t still has an informative and interactive website.
This list deliberately excludes large, established corporations which might have the greatest amount of growth in terms of raw or stores opened in favour of smaller Australian businesses that are experiencing substantial size increases.
SEO Shark is one of the fastest growing digital marketing agencies in Australia. The company is based in Sydney, but has expanded rapidly to have addresses in Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth as well. SEO Shark has expanded from simply offering search engine marketing (reflected in the SEO part of the name) to now being a full service digital marketing agency.
Founded in 2004 by Lucas Bikowski, PhD in Marketing, SEO Shark is growing rapidly each year. In 2004 it employed just 5 staff, and now in 2018 it has over 80 full-time employees. During SEO Shark’s rapid growth spurt, Davide Defendi, the Aussie Entrepreneur, joint the company in 2015 as the second major stakeholder. Since 2015, SEO Shark’s revenue has grown to be over $10 million.
They provide all kinds of digital marketing to local and overseas businesses, although their special area of expertise is still, appropriately, SEO and other search engine marketing such as PPC.
ShowPo is an online women’s clothing retailer that uses online advertising very successfully. They were one of the first brands in Australia to see the advertising advantages of using Snapchat in addition to the more common social media platforms to increase their brand awareness. They ship clothes all over the world from Australia, and are only continuing to grow.
ShowPo also has a lifestyle blog on their website to provide content for their followers, which is an excellent way to keep people coming to their website. Of course most companies on this list have a blog, but ShowPo’s is separated from the rest of their website, and is more of a news/blog site rather than being a sales tool, or just being about their industry.
For a retail business to be as successful as this one is without having any physical locations you know that they have to do something right!
My Pet Warehouse
My Pet Warehouse started off as an online pet supplies store, and has steadily expanded. The company is still primarily online, but now also has 13 physical outlets around Australia. The business is based on accepting online orders for all kinds of products for animals and shipping them around Australia.
The company does not sell animals, as it is obviously quite difficult to ship cats and dogs around the country! Despite this it has grown very quickly since being founded in 2009, and is one of the largest pet stores in the country. They have grown very quickly, almost entirely over the internet, and are a great example of how e-commerce stores can add retail outlets to their business.
This is an online marketplace that connects Australians with retailers. Rather than operating like eBay or Gumtree, where items are sold between users, MyDeal.com.au is a place for smaller retailers to offer deals to potential customers. It has a focus on lifestyle merchandise such as furniture, leisure and health products.
The online marketplace has taken advantage of the number of new e-commerce retailers competing for the same space (namely, being visible on the internet) by providing them with an avenue where customers can find them by looking at products. It also benefits consumers, who can search through the merchandise and prices of many different companies in the same category in the same place.
MyDeal.com.au charges retailers to use the platform, with the expectation that this cost will be passed on to customers. However, enough retailers and consumers are prepared to pay for the convenience offered to both for the website and the company behind it to rapidly grow.
4 Pines Brewing Company
The 4 Pines Brewing Company has capitalised on the rapidly growing craft beer market in Australia to become a major player in the Australian beer industry. Based around Sydney’s Northern Beaches, the company has rapidly increased its revenue through selling a number of very popular craft beers.
They have expanded from being a boutique outlet operating out of Manly and trying to get a beer on tap at a few pubs on the Northern Beaches to having 3 (soon to be 4) venues of their own, and you are likely to find at least one 4 Pines beer at virtually any bar in Sydney – and it is increasingly common to find the most popular offerings further afield.
The brewing company keeps a fun atmosphere at its venues (and among fans) by continually experimenting and releasing new beers. There are a few staples, including an alcoholic ginger beer, but there is also always something new to try. This is the only company on the list to not have substantial online operations, but they have managed to grow rapidly recently regardless.
Lessons to take
All of these companies took advantage of rising trends, and managed to position themselves at the forefront of their industries. SEO Shark has capitalised on the growth of Google and other search engines to grow exponentially through providing SEO services, while ShowPo, My Pet Warehouse and MyDeal.com.au all use the internet to attract customers and conduct business.
4 Pines is a bit of an outlier, as they do not do business over the internet. However, they capitalised on the growth in popularity of craft beers and small, boutique bars to position themselves at the forefront of the trend in Sydney.
It is clear from these examples that taking advantage of current trends is a great way to grow a business. The internet offers a huge opportunity for anyone wanting to start a business, although it isn’t essential – as 4 Pines have shown.