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January 8, 2024, vizologi

Creating Your Own SWOT Matrix in 5 Steps

Creating a SWOT matrix can help you understand your business or personal strategy. This framework identifies strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. It helps you make informed decisions and develop a solid plan. In 5 steps, you can create your own SWOT matrix to gain insight into your current situation and plan for future success.

What’s a SWOT Chart?

Find Out the Pieces of SWOT

A SWOT analysis evaluates internal and external factors that affect a company’s position and planning. It identifies weaknesses that may hinder growth and performance. Opportunities are found through external factors, like market trends or new customer segments. For instance, a company may see an opportunity for growth in an emerging market with increasing demand for its products or services.

The Good Stuff: Strengths

An individual or company’s strengths can include things like a strong brand reputation, high-quality products or services, innovative technology, efficient processes, and talented employees.

These strengths help with overall success by providing a competitive advantage, enhancing the company’s reputation, and increasing customer loyalty.

By using these strengths, an individual or company can achieve goals and overcome challenges by focusing on areas where they excel, capitalizing on unique capabilities, and standing out from competitors.

For example, a company with a strong brand reputation can use this strength to expand into new markets or introduce new products. Meanwhile, a company with innovative technology can use this strength to streamline operations, improve customer experience, and stay ahead of industry trends.

Recognizing and using these strengths helps individuals and companies position themselves for sustained success and growth in the marketplace.

What Needs Work: Weaknesses

The SWOT analysis has identified some weaknesses:

  • Lack of brand recognition in new markets
  • Outdated technology
  • Poor supply chain management

These weaknesses could hinder the company’s competitiveness and potential. For example, outdated technology can lead to inefficiencies, affecting productivity and customer satisfaction.

Strategies like investing in new marketing, upgrading technology, and restructuring supply chains can address these weaknesses. By taking these steps, the company can improve and reach its goals. For instance, new marketing initiatives can increase brand recognition in new markets, while upgraded technology systems can enhance operations and customer service.

Chances to Grow: Opportunities

Opportunities identified through a SWOT analysis can include market trends, unmet consumer needs, and potential partnerships or collaborations.

A SWOT chart helps in finding the right path for achieving goals.

It provides a clear overview of the organization’s strengths and weaknesses, as well as the external opportunities and threats.

This analysis facilitates strategic decision-making by enabling the company to leverage its strengths to capitalize on opportunities and manage or mitigate potential threats.

After analyzing the opportunities identified through a SWOT analysis, actions that can be taken include:

  • Developing a strategic plan to pursue potential opportunities
  • Allocating resources to leverage the identified opportunities
  • Adjusting the organizational strategy to position the company for growth and success.

An example of a company utilizing opportunities identified through a SWOT analysis is The Coca-Cola Company.

It leveraged its strengths and identified opportunities to strengthen market position.

Also, it addressed weaknesses and threats strategically.

Watch Out for These: Threats

Potential threats in a SWOT analysis should be carefully monitored. This includes factors like market competition, changes in consumer behavior, and emerging technologies.

By identifying and addressing these threats, organizations can develop strategies to protect the business from harm. For example, a company might invest in research and development to stay ahead of new market entrants.

Failing to address these threats can result in missed opportunities for growth and innovation. It can also leave the organization vulnerable to competitive pressures and market changes.

Consequences of not addressing threats in a SWOT analysis can lead to declining market share, reduced profitability, and loss of competitive advantage. These can significantly impact the organization’s long-term success and sustainability.

Steps to Make Your Own SWOT Chart

Step 1: Pick Your Goal

Before conducting a SWOT analysis, it’s important to first determine the specific goal that the company wants to achieve. By identifying a clear and measurable objective, the company can then proceed to gather the necessary resources and compile relevant ideas to conduct the analysis.

This step is crucial as it helps the organization to refine its findings and develop a strategic plan. For example, if a company’s goal is to expand its market share, the SWOT analysis can help identify potential strengths and opportunities that could be leveraged to achieve this objective.

Identifying the specific goal at the outset ensures that the ensuing analysis remains focused and relevant, ultimately contributing to the overall success of the organization and benefiting stakeholders and the business as a whole.

For instance, by achieving the goal of expanding market share, the company could increase its revenue, create more job opportunities, and establish a stronger presence in the industry.

Step 2: Get All You Need Ready

To make your own SWOT Chart, follow these steps:

  1. Start by determining the objective.
  2. Gather resources.
  3. Compile ideas.
  4. Refine findings.
  5. Develop a strategy.

The SWOT analysis evaluates a company’s competitive position by identifying its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. After completing the analysis, take actions to address challenges and capitalize on opportunities that can enhance the business. This may involve reevaluating strategic goals and making necessary changes to improve overall performance.

For instance, The Coca-Cola Company conducted a SWOT analysis, which helped them identify internal strengths and external opportunities, as well as weaknesses and potential threats. This led to strategic decisions that improved their competitive position.

Step 3: Write Down Your Ideas

After doing a SWOT analysis, the next step is to write down the ideas. This means putting together the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats into a clear and organized chart or list.

The purpose of the SWOT chart is to visually represent and analyze the gathered data, making it easier to understand and use for strategic planning. For instance, a company can use different colors for each category, making it easier to spot trends and patterns.

Once the SWOT analysis is done, the company should use the findings to create a strategy. This involves figuring out how to use strengths to seize opportunities and how to address weaknesses to deal with threats.

The SWOT chart gives a quick summary of the company’s position, making it a helpful tool for decision-making and strategic planning.

An effective example of using a SWOT analysis is The Coca-Cola Company. They used the analysis to identify their strengths and potential threats, and then strategically improved their competitive position in the market.

Step 4: Check Over Your List

After completing the SWOT analysis, it’s important to review the list. Check that all strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats are accurately identified and listed in the SWOT chart. Also, consider if there are any additional ideas or points that need to be included for a comprehensive overview of the organization’s position.

Outline potential actions and strategies based on the SWOT analysis to address the identified elements. This helps the organization understand its internal and external factors, leading to strategic planning. It allows the organization to capitalize on strengths and opportunities, and effectively address weaknesses and threats.

For instance, a popular beverage company used the SWOT framework to acknowledge its strengths and opportunities. It also addressed weaknesses and threats, allowing it to devise successful strategic considerations over time.

Step 5: Make Your Plan

One way to create a SWOT chart is by following these steps:

  1. Define the objective.
  2. Gather resources.
  3. Compile ideas.
  4. Refine findings.
  5. Develop a strategy.

A SWOT chart helps to analyze strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats related to business competition or project planning.

After completing the analysis, it’s important to identify challenges affecting the business and potential opportunities to enhance it.

Once the analysis is done, the company should take action to address weaknesses and threats while leveraging strengths and opportunities. This helps improve the competitive position and plan for the future.

For instance, a company might address weaknesses by enhancing employee training and capitalize on opportunities through strategic marketing campaigns after conducting a SWOT analysis.

Why Use a SWOT Chart?

Making Big Decisions

To make your own SWOT chart, a company should follow these steps:

  1. Determine its objective.
  2. Gather resources.
  3. Compile ideas.
  4. Refine findings.
  5. Develop a strategy.

When making big decisions, a SWOT chart should be used to identify:

  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses
  • Opportunities
  • Threats

After completing a SWOT analysis, a company should:

  • Use the findings to their advantage.
  • Develop strategies to address weaknesses and threats.
  • Maximize strengths and opportunities.

This can help a company:

  • Develop a strong competitive position.
  • Make strategic plans to enhance their business.

An example of a successful SWOT analysis is The Coca-Cola Company. They used the analysis to:

  • Identify opportunities and strengths.
  • Address weaknesses and threats.
  • Make effective strategic considerations over time.

Helps You Spot Trouble Early

Using a SWOT matrix helps an organization spot potential issues early on. It does this by evaluating its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.

When a company identifies weaknesses or threats, it can address these areas before they become larger problems. The analysis also serves as a starting point in recognizing possible pitfalls while still at a manageable stage.

The SWOT chart can help identify potential threats and weaknesses. It does this by looking at both internal and external factors. For internal weaknesses, a company might consider its financial data or employee skillset. External factors could include shifts in consumer demand or changes in regulatory laws.

Companies can use these assessments to adapt to market forces, target areas for improvement, and stay competitive.

In various industries, companies have successfully used SWOT analysis to spot potential issues early. For example, the healthcare industry uses this evaluation to improve patient outcomes and lower risk. Similarly, in the technology sector, companies may use a SWOT matrix to strategically plan the launch of new products. This involves taking into account potential changes in consumer taste and market competition.

Find the Right Path for Your Goals

To make a SWOT chart for your goals:

  1. Determine your objective and gather relevant resources.
  2. Compile your ideas and refine your findings.
  3. Develop a strategy based on your analysis.

A SWOT chart assesses internal and external factors like strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. It helps identify challenges and opportunities that affect your path to success.

After the analysis, take actionable steps to address the findings. This could involve capitalizing on strengths and opportunities, addressing weaknesses, and mitigating potential threats. The insights guide strategic decision-making and lead to more effective planning.

Putting Your SWOT Chart Together

Arrange the SWOT Sections

The SWOT chart typically arranges strengths and weaknesses as internal factors, and opportunities and threats as external factors. Start with internal strengths and weaknesses, then move on to external opportunities and threats. This order helps differentiate between internal and external factors. Organizing the sections this way enables a more organized approach to strategic planning and decision-making, leading to a better understanding of competitive position.

For instance, The Coca-Cola Company used this method to influence its competitive strategy and long-term success through a structured SWOT analysis.

Fill in Your SWOT Table

When filling out a SWOT table, it’s important to identify the strengths and weaknesses. Strengths could be expertise, unique products, strong brand reputation, or a loyal customer base. Weaknesses might include lack of resources, poor infrastructure, debt, or inadequate market research.

Opportunities for growth can come from new markets, technological advancements, changes in consumer behavior, or industry trends.

Including these factors in the SWOT analysis helps to provide a comprehensive overview of the current position and potential for growth.

Examples of SWOT Done Right

Tech Giant’s SWOT Close-Up

The SWOT analysis gives a full view of the tech giant. It looks at both what’s inside and outside the company. It points out the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats the company faces. This helps with its competitive position and future plans.

The tech giant’s strengths include being a leader in the market, making innovative products, doing well financially, and having a strong brand. On the flip side, weaknesses include relying too much on one product, being limited in some markets, and having problems with operations.

In terms of growth, the tech giant can look to new markets, make new partnerships, and invest in new tech. The analysis also shows threats to the company, like lots of competition, changing trends among consumers, and economic problems.

By understanding all of this, the company can make better decisions and come up with plans to use its strengths, fix its weaknesses, take advantage of opportunities, and deal with threats. A successful example of using the SWOT analysis in the tech industry is a top tech company that used it to adjust to different market conditions and grow in the future.

Coffee Shop’s SWOT Scoop

The coffee shop has many strengths:

  • Prime location in a high-traffic area
  • Diverse menu with specialty drinks and pastries
  • Loyal customer base

However, it also has weaknesses:

  • High employee turnover
  • Limited seating capacity
  • Inconsistent service quality during peak hours

There are opportunities for growth:

  • Expanding online presence through social media marketing
  • Introducing a rewards program to attract new customers
  • Collaborating with local businesses to host community events

By conducting a SWOT analysis, the coffee shop can identify areas for improvement and take advantage of opportunities to improve its competitive position in the market.

Local Store’s SWOT Snapshot

The local store has strengths:

  • Prime location in a high-traffic area
  • Loyal customer base
  • Strong online presence

However, they also need to address weaknesses:

  • Outdated technology
  • Inconsistent product quality
  • Lack of brand recognition

The local store has opportunities for growth:

  • Expanding into new markets
  • Offering innovative products or services
  • Increasing social media presence to reach a wider audience.

Actions After the SWOT

Using Strengths to Your Advantage

One can use their strengths in a SWOT analysis to gain a competitive edge.

First, identify internal factors that give an advantage over others. Then, develop strategies to leverage these strengths to attain objectives more effectively. Capitalizing on identified strengths involves setting company objectives, gathering resources, compiling ideas, refining findings, and developing a strategy.

An organization can also use its strengths to comprehend the market, gain a competitive advantage, and position itself strategically. For instance, The Coca-Cola Company conducted a SWOT analysis, highlighting strengths and opportunities to create effective strategies. By clearly identifying and using their strengths, they adapted to the changing market and stayed ahead of their competition.

Improving on Weak Points

One way to improve identified weaknesses is through training and development programs. These programs provide employees with the skills and knowledge needed to address weaknesses. Seeking feedback from customers and employees is also helpful in identifying areas for improvement and implementing targeted strategies.

Organizations and individuals can use their strengths to improve weak points. For example, a company with strong marketing capabilities can use these strengths to address weaknesses in product development. Similarly, individuals with strong communication skills can build relationships and seek feedback to work on their weaknesses.

To prevent potential problems or threats from becoming major issues, conducting regular market research and staying updated on industry trends is important. This proactive approach helps individuals and organizations take preemptive action, such as diversifying product offerings or expanding into new markets, to mitigate the impact of potential issues before they become critical.

Preparing for Potential Problems

Potential problems in a project can come from factors both inside and outside the organization. Weaknesses within the project or organization can cause inefficiencies, while external threats may come from competitors or market conditions. To prepare for and deal with these potential problems, you can use the SWOT matrix to identify weaknesses and threats. By analyzing internal and external factors, organizations can develop strategies to minimize weaknesses and mitigate threats.

Steps like gathering resources, generating ideas, refining findings, and developing a strategy can be taken to address potential problems. This analysis helps identify challenges and opportunities, making decision-making easier and providing an overview of the company’s position. The Coca-Cola Company successfully used this approach by noting weaknesses and threats, which led to effective strategic considerations over time.

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