You might think your small business is small potatoes when compared to huge brands and multinational enterprises, but nothing is further from the truth. Small or medium sized businesses account for 90% of companies in the USA, and employ 70% of global workers. While loans, investments, and savings are great to get you started, profits are monies your business has actually earned through hard work! We need and want these profits in the black, and there are several techniques small businesses rely on to drive revenue and support a healthy cash flow.
Analyse Current Customer Behaviour
Current customer behaviour is a great way to analyse your current successes and failures, and predict the future of your small business. Response to this analysis could be as simple as removing an underperforming product from your site, or taking immediate and public steps to resolve customer issues. Social media is a great way to get immediate access to by-the-numbers customer behaviour statistics. Based on the likes and dislikes of your loyal customers and followers, you can pivot your business to accommodate.
Customer Appreciation Promotions
It’s far easier to keep an existing customer than to hook a new one. It’s important to show your existing customers that you appreciate their patronage, by offering existing customer-specific deals and promotions periodically. Offering customers special deals is like opening the rope to the VIP section, and gives them a sense of being in a community that appreciates them – all while saving them money on a product they already enjoy!
New Customer Promotions
New customers are the existing customers of the future, if you play your cards right! Based on the analysis you did on current customer behaviour and needs, create packages, deals or even free trials to attract new customers to the fold. Even subscription models, traditionally a very static e-commerce model, have begun offering new customer promotions that buy you out of an unsatisfying contract with another vendor. While small businesses don’t always have the budget to run this type of promotion, they are doing the same on a smaller scale. Try offering a discount, marketed as a limited time or pop-up deal, for new customers, or give them a free sample to get your product into their hands and homes fast.
Customer Service is King
Just as we analyse customer behaviour, they analyse ours. Have you ever seen a negative review with a snarky reply from a small business owner? The negative feeling you get imagining how this business owner would deal with your issue, completely informs your decision to either take a risk, or dismiss entirely (there’s just no turning that ship around). Shopping cart abandonment, likes and dislikes, high returns, and good or bad online reviews are all metrics you can use to judge the satisfaction of your current customers – and an opportunity to make changes to help your business grow.
Work Smarter not Harder
Investment in digital transformation might sound like an expense over a sale-generator, but you’d be wrong. Deploying and marketing better data privacy protection for customers, or using CRM software to track customer behaviour, are great ways to boost sales from behind the scenes. Many small businesses are deploying third-party shipping software and solutions to streamline the shipping and delivery process. Setting it up is as easy as searching “how to ship a package,” and deciding on the best solution for your business and your customers. Customers appreciate ease of use, especially post-pandemic, where millions of apps and websites were launched without proper QC. Customers often dismiss products or businesses that make them work hard to get a product.
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