Five Ways to Improve Your Business Today
Your competition is one of the reasons customers are more knowledgeable, but you can use them as support too.
Show that you do what they are doing, and then show more! Be the best result and have the information and facts to back it up.
Be the best result and have the information and facts to back it up.
You don’t need to copy all of the things they are doing, but it might spark an idea that can give you another angle.
In some instances, it might give you the opportunity to buy their business outright! Then you can take advantage of having more customers for your product, and one less competitor. The following are five ways to improve your business today.
1 – Improve Your Processes
How long have you been running your business? 5, 10, maybe 20 years? It’s probably fair to say that things have changed since you started your business. Something that is constantly evolving over time is your actual business processes. Every little task that is performed in your business is a process. A bigger process will usually involve a bunch of smaller processes and unless you have ever sat down and drawn a flow chart or written down each step in the process, you won’t even know how complicated things are!
You can work out your processes in a number of ways. I bet before long, you will be surprised at how many steps there actually are to one of your processes.
- Look at what steps can be reduced, or omitted altogether
- If having too many software products is a problem, see if that can be reduced
- Ask your staff for input, especially in the process that they’re directly involved in
- Set up a calendar reminder to do a review of your processes at least annually
2 – Reassess Customer Expectations
When was the last time you looked at every aspect of your business from what the customer can see? You might be doing a lot of great things internally, but if the customer can’t see that, how do they know? Here’s where you need to get creative and stop being involved in the business for a few hours and do some experimentation. You know what your customers buy from you, now put it to the test.
Jump on your website and go through the process your customer would. Fill in the form, download the brochure and get a feel for the experience. Then, do it again on your mobile phone. Surprised?
3 – Do Something Different
There’s a famous mis-quote from Albert Einstein that goes “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” Now, while the quote is misattributed to him, the actual quote is great advice. If your business is not growing or improving at the rate you expect it to or want, you need to work out why.
What can you do for your customers that is outside the box and makes them feel special, while not costing you a lot of money?
It might be as simple as sending them a regular email, or it could be more frequent social media posts. It might be something more drastic, like pivoting your business altogether! Maybe your business can be used as a vehicle to implement a new service that compliments what you already offer?
This leads us to point number 4…
4 – Increase Customer Value
Have you heard the saying “It’s cheaper to keep a customer than attract a new one”? Not sure who said it or where it came from, but it stands true. Any customer that has bought from you already, trusts you. Your product or service and all the effort that went into getting them as a customer, has already won them over. Getting them to purchase something else from you should be much easier to do than getting a completely new customer. But what do you do?
- Whatever your product is, can you introduce and upgrade to it that makes it more valuable and better than it was originally? This happens with hardware and software all the time! Basically, this is why we buy new phones.
- There are so many things a customer will buy to improve a product they have already spent money on. It’s to save them from having to make an entirely new purchase at even more expense. We don’t like spending money, so if you can make the barrier to entry smaller, you’ll win more sales.
- Upsell your current customers to an add-on for your product or introduce a new service to support your products.
- Maybe your product needs regular maintenance, so instead of customers paying the same value each time, create a monthly charge that is less than the total overall, but is paid for at least 12 months. This way you’re not reliant on the customer wanting maintenance when they need it, and you have a whole year’s worth of income.
Each customer, you already have can be made more valuable by giving them something else to buy from you. Work out your product or service and let them know!
5 – Assess Your Competition
This point is a close relative to point number 2 — Why? If the customer can have a better experience at one of your competitors, what’s stopping them? You are. Jump onto Google and type in your business, and then search for your industry and product.
- Who are your competitors and how do you rate?
- What are they offering that you can do too?
- What positives can you take away that you are doing better, and how do you share that to your customers?
- What items do you need to get to their level?
This list is by no means exhaustive, but I hope it helps take you to the next level. And remember, the most powerful thing you can do to improve your business though, is just starting!