Effective Strategies that Make Customers Choose Your Small Business Over the Big Competitorsby Mark Courts on 07/06/19
Small businesses still form the backbone of our local economy, but they face challenges when it comes to competing with major market players. The good news is that small business is far from dead -- you just need the right strategies and tools to gain the advantage.
Stay on Top of Your Tech Game
If you do any e-commerce, having an engaging and reliable website is an absolute must. Everyone knows that Amazon is the major hub of online shopping, but a small business can still compete in e-commerce by making sure you offer an experience that is just as convenient.
One of the key decisions you'll make that impacts your e-commerce potential is choosing a website hosting company. There are different types of services to choose from, and any savvy business owner should compare the options to make sure you're getting the features you need while making the most of your budget. Some companies offer a 90-day money back guarantee, dependable uptime, secure hosting solutions, and 24/7 support. This is all in addition to a wide range of other features. Of course, you still want to look at the overall benefits and drawbacks of what they offer to make sure you find a hosting service that fits your particular business needs.
Once you have the basics of your website up and running, you'll want to add other useful tech tools that help you stay at the top of your game. According to Hello Tech, some of the best tech tools you need include accounting software, cloud storage, and email marketing.
Continue to Innovate
Market trends can change incredibly fast, but as a small business, you can actually use this to your advantage. This is because it's often easier for small businesses to adapt to customer demands. As long as you follow the trends in your industry and listen to customer feedback, you can keep innovating to meet those demands. And when you adapt quickly, customers will return to you because they know they can count on you for the newest and best.
Don't Hesitate to Delegate
When you're first starting a business, you may feel compelled to do everything yourself. However, as your company begins to grow, it's important to surround yourself with qualified individuals you trust to handle tasks both big and small. That way, you can delegate certain tasks to team members, which will allow you to focus on ways to continue growing your business. If you're unsure where to start, look into hiring a virtual assistant through an online job board. Virtual assistants can function as remote office assistants that tackle a range of tasks including administrative support, customer service, data entry, and calendar management thereby relieving you of such duties making it easier to set your sights on the bigger picture.
Stand Out from the Crowd
While it's good to adapt easily, you don't want to stray from your core products or services. For example, if your business is a children’s boutique, you can innovate by continually bringing in brands that fit what your customers want. What you don't want to do is sell every children's product under the sun. You may not have as wide a selection as Amazon, but specializing gives customers a product and an experience that they can't get elsewhere.
Be an Ace at Customer Service
Providing the best in customer service is where you can set yourself apart. As a small business owner, you have the ability to provide a more personal experience. You can create this relationship in all kinds of ways: by interacting with fans on social media, asking for customer feedback, and providing loyalty rewards are just a few ideas. Plus, with web tools that any small business can use, you can deliver just as much convenience as the bigger brands.
As part of your customer service strategy, focus on what you can offer, rather than what you can’t. Maybe you can't afford free shipping on every order, but you can create a loyalty rewards program that gives customers credit. Offering a rewards program is worth the investment because it creates repeat customers who are truly invested in your business.
The truth is that a small business can't do what big retailers like Amazon can, but big retailers can't do what you can. Maximizing customer service and being innovative are the things small businesses do best. Don't listen to naysayers who tell you small businesses can't compete these days. All you need are the right tools and tips to carve out your place in the market.
Marissa Perez is a co-founder and head marketing writer at Businesspop.net. She can be reached at: Marissa@businesspop.net.