With all the competition faced by businesses today, it is important that due consideration be given to what the customers need and how you treat them. Developing a set of loyal customers will ensure that your business not only survives the competition but also flourishes in the seemingly hostile environment. In this article we look at improving customer experience using simple ideas.
Improving customer experience
Scope out the competition
You cannot compete till you know who you are competing against. Become a customer of your competition. Sign up for any newsletters, catalogues, or updates that they send to special customers. Examine the experience that they give their customers. Do they offer credit to their customers? If yes, what period and whether it is interest free. How do they manage the cash flows? Do they take quick loans online to cover the difference? Test how effective their problem resolution centers are by offering up a complaint about their product. All in all try to find out just how they function and handle their money and their customers. You will be able to see what they offer and you do not. Some of their policies and practices may be well worth emulating while others you would realize are best avoided. Analyze what they do and what you do in the same situation. Now think of ways to improve this experience for your own customers. Essentially, try to put in place policies that will keep you in the black at all times to enable you to service your customers better without having to cut corners.
Give the customer something unique
In a world of “Me too” businesses, the customer is always looking for that something different. If your business makes it a point to give them that unique factor, it will help attract more sales for your business. Since it is hardly likely that your products are so unique that no one else can offer them the same thing, you need to build your USP or unique selling point in your customer service or some other area. For instance you can offer them home delivery free for orders over a certain monetary value. This can be quite a big draw if your product is somewhat bulky and needs to be bought on a regular basis. You can even have a special end of season discount on some of your best selling fast moving products. This will increase the sales volume for you at the end of the month. Another option would be to offer limited period interest free credit to your customers. Allowing your regular customers to make quarterly or monthly payments might help you retain them and guarantee repeat business. It is pertinent, however, to make sure this does not affect your cash flows and you have enough liquid capital to cover the time difference.
Pass on discounts to cost conscious customers
Cost conscious customers always love to get a good bargain. Some of them may be cash strapped and in need of quick loans. While the “buy one and get one free” standard is not all that unknown these days, it may help you increase your sales if you are in a competitive fast moving customer goods segment. It is the repeated offerings of genuine discounts which will help your business attract the cost conscious customers. Please remember that the customer is a savvy shopper who is always out to get the best possible deal. If you are offering that deal to them, they will be more than happy to take it from you. Make sure the deal you offer is bounds and leaps ahead of your competition. The short term hit on revenue can be more than compensated by the long term benefit from faithful repeat customers.
Stock up on a novelty item in your niche
Another way to secure your set number of customers is to offer a specialized item in your shop. For instance if you run a stationery store you can think about stocking up on the different canvas and paints that are used by professional artists besides the standard painting equipment that all other stationery stores carry for student artists. When the customer knows that he will surely get that novelty item at your store he is more likely to make the trip to buy from you.