Business is always changing. Whether you’re an owner of an exclusive online business or a brick-and-mortar store, you need to follow the trends to stay relevant in the eyes of potential clients. If you fail to adapt to the changes in your industry, then you risk your business from falling off everybody’s radars.
To combat irrelevancy in the market, you need to draw more customers to your business.
Aside from following the latest business trends, you need to implement the best business and marketing practices. Some of these tried and tested tactics will sound familiar to you, but there are a couple of unique ideas that will gain your store even more customers in the long run.
The ability to stay “mobile” in a world constantly on the go is a must for any business. What exactly does this mean? In this case it’s the ability to take mobile payments.
Imagine that you are off at a trade show and have a booth to sell products. In order to take full advantage of your buyers’ ability to pay, you need some type of small business credit card processing. After all, not everyone carries around cash anymore, and you need to be ready to accommodate those that only have their cards with them.
This extends to your place of business, as well. Imagine you’ve got a long line of people waiting. Why not hasten the paying process for the customers by giving them the chance to order and pay while still in line? The more you can help the customer, the more they will trust and come back to your business.
Straight-forward business plan
Nothing is worse than being indecisive, especially in the small business world. Business plans can change with the tide, but making sure that your entire company understands the new directions is tantamount to success. This ensures that everybody in your business (i.e. marketing, sales, management, etc.) knows which direction your company is headed. If all the different departments aren’t working together, you’re going to have a confused, frustrated workforce, and a business plan that isn’t going to pan out in the long run.
Great web content
Content is king on the Internet, and if you don’t have great web content, your business is missing out on many lucrative opportunities. Since people are always seeking for information, provide them useful and actionable content that your readers want to read.
Great web content does not mean constantly promoting your products through your articles or posts. What you want to do is become a thought leader – provide fresh perspectives and insight on your content that haven’t been discussed anywhere else. Incite conversation and dialogue with other people by preparing well-researched data about a particular aspect in your business. These should help boost your reputation and authority in the market.
Engaging print material
Unlike web content, print materials are more suitable for promoting your business to your market. However, this does not mean that print materials can’t be engaging.
Your business cards, posters, brochures can help define your brand and really give it a personality. People want to feel a connection with the company they are buying from. Showing your brand’s personality will help build that connection.
For ideas and inspiration on how to come up with engaging promotional tools to catch the attention of your target audience, refer to our guide “The Most Epic Print Marketing Posts for Small Businesses.”
Getting loyal customers is kind of an amalgam of the first four things your small business can’t live without. To get them, you need to make sure you are targeting those people that are most inclined to buy your product, also known as target marketing.
This type of marketing aims towards catering to a specific demographic (we’ll call them the 20 percent, based on the 80/20 rule of business). Upon successfully doing so, the customer is more likely to see your company and business as knowledgeable not only in your particular product field, but also about their needs as people.
All five of these things are not only important for the success of your business, but for the life of your brand. To recap:
- Being mobile means you get to be out among the customers, see them in their own environment, rather than your own.
- A business plan that everyone can understand and follow not only gives you flexibility, but also stability.
- Having great content builds trust and engagement between you and the consumer, while having great print material shows the personality of your brand in a new light.
- As a combination of all these things, having loyal customers means that you have business, and business is good.
Genevieve Coates is a freelance writer and graduate business student at University of Florida. She lives in Gainesville with her husband.