Whether you’re a fresh-faced startup entrepreneur with the world at your feet or a veteran company owner, your business should be doing a number of things for its customers if it wants to carry on trading. In fact, there are a number of things that it must be doing. It if doesn’t do these things, and if it doesn’t do them today, it will go under.
Fortunately, there is a list of all the important practices all business owners out there need to be embracing when it comes to their customers in order to keep their business not only afloat but thriving. Below are four to take note of today:
Make sure you can accept payment
As simple as this might sound, your business needs to ensure that it can accept payment. Today, this means doing more than operating a till system and then filling it with change. Instead, you must be set up to accept credit cards and other forms of card payments. This is because, generally, customers go shopping with little to no change and only their card in tow, meaning the only way you are going to get their custom is if you make paying on their card available to them. If you don’t, then they’ll just take their custom, and their card, to a competitor of yours that will accept their preferred method of payment.
Use the internet in all the right ways
The internet is the biggest tool you have in your arsenal when it comes to reaching your customers, so make sure you use it in all the right ways. You can only use this tool correctly, however, if you are willing to embrace the social aspect of it. It means embracing all things social media, and, to the point, ensuring your business has a handle on all the sites your customers use online.
First, you need to run a diagnosis to find out what social media sites your target audience is spending most of their time using, and at what time of the day they are doing so. You should then task a tech-savvy employee of yours to mandate your site of choice, ensuring that they are posting continuously engaging content. Finally, you should make sure that you are ‘listening’ online, which means making sure you are the first to come across any reviews your business may receive.
Make time for your customers
Customers want to feel like you actually care for them, whether you do or not, no matter how personal the service you offer them is, so make sure you are making time for them and talking to them. Whether this means sitting down with them to get their take on the services you offer and how you can make them better, or whether this even means discussing what your competitors are doing, get the coffee and the biscuits out, and make some time for your customers. Your customer loyalty will be boosted as a result.
Provide great value
Customers deserve value for the money they spend, and it’s essential that you offer it to them. If you don’t, then you can be sure your competitors will, meaning they will, therefore, steal your custom from underneath you.
When it comes to offering great value, you need to take a hard look at the prices that you set. To the point, you should be considering how you can make your pricing system far less cost-based, which is not customer orientated in the slightest, and far more value-based, which is. Of course, you cannot lower your prices to a point where it is going to cripple your business, as that would be neither good for you nor your customers. You should instead look at the areas that you can afford to lower, and you should also look at ways to source cheaper materials, equipment and produce without losing the quality that you have become known for.
Something else that you be doing when it comes to the provision of great value is focusing your investments on your valuable customers. You should be doing so because this will strengthen your customer base tenfold, and a strong, loyal base forged in this mold will always act as a catalyst for new, incoming custom.
Staying afloat in a sea of other businesses is hard, but it has to be done if you want yours to bring the success both you and it deserves. So, make sure to embrace all the important practices above, and make sure to always give your customers what they want.