What Do Customers Really Want From Your Business?
It goes without saying that your business should be offering a great product or service that people actually want- it would be pretty pointless otherwise! However there’s more than goes into business than just this, and there are certain things that customers will expect of you as a company. When the market is saturated with businesses and you have competitors at every turn, you need to make sure you’re giving people what they want in order to make those all important sales, turn a profit and thrive. Here are just a few things customers will be looking for when they choose to shop with you.
A recognisable brand
People love brands. Research has shown that they trust them, and are willing to spend more money on them. This is because when you shop with a brand you know you’re not only buying quality but also a promise. Brands spend years working up a good reputation and it’s this that puts customers at ease. Speak with your marketing team, outsourcing to companies like Inner Spark Creative advertising can be useful if you don’t have the right professionals on board in your company. Work on building your brand and creating advertising and marketing materials to get this out to potential customers. Remember, the best brands don’t just sell products or services- they sell a certain lifestyle. Work out what it is that you customers want through market research, and use your brand to appeal to them.
A high quality website
Customers don’t want to be stuck in the stone age, using a website that’s slow, crashes, is full of errors or isn’t properly optimised. In most cases, especially if you sell online, your website will be the first thing people see of your business and so it needs to make a good impression. Invest in a web designer who can create something beautiful and customised to your business. Try and create something yourself that looks amateur and you might put people off before they’ve even had the chance to properly look. It needs to be visually pleasing and not cluttered with ads. It needs to have clear fonts, colours that work well and the right balance of text, video, images and white space on the page. Customers should be able to search for any information not on the main page, find it easy to navigate and there should be links to all of your social media pages, company information and contact information.
A smartphone app
As well as just a good website thats properly optimised for all devices, a smartphone app allows your customers to essentially download your business to their phone. That way you’re only ever a click away, a good place to be as a company! Customers like smartphone apps as they make it easy and convenient to shop with you, plus it makes you look more trustworthy. To be accepted onto the app store you have to be verified, so customers know that it’s safe to shop with you.
Good reviews and social media presence
When you’re shopping with a new company who you’ve never heard of before, what do you do before hitting that checkout button? Chances are you check for reviews (on a legitimate third party site like Reevoo or Trustpilot) and check the company’s social media presence. This can give you an indication of how past customers have found the business, and it’s invaluable information. So two things your company can do is build up good reviews and make sure you’re responsive on social media. This will show customers that if they do have a problem they will easily be able to get in touch. Make it worth people’s while for following you, tweet out deals and discounts and advise them first of things like sales. Respond promptly to any queries or issues, and retweet positive comments, or pictures of customers using your products. Open a Facebook business page which has a review section and encourage customers to leave reviews. While you can’t offer any kind of compensation for this, you can certainly ask nicely and many will be happy to leave a nice review if they’ve had a good experience. This can help tremendously with business, and sway anyone who’s sat on the fence to go ahead and make an order.
Great customer service
Again, customers will want to know that they can easily get in touch if something goes wrong with their transaction. Having a friendly and reliable customer service team can build up people’s opinion of your business, and if something does go wrong they will be far more forgiving if it’s quickly sorted out by a friendly human. As well as having a phone number, a live chat feature is also good as well as a Twitter page dedicated to dealing with issues if needed. People will remember the interaction they had with your business, if this is positive and they were greeted by a friendly, welcoming and helpful customer service assistant, chances are they will come back and shop with you again.
The benefits of blogging for business have been well established. From a customer’s point of view, it shows that your company knows what it’s talking about- if you sell clothes for example you could write about styling tips, celebrity fashion and current trends. It gives the nod to the customer that you’re knowledgeable and trustworthy. Going back to trust, a well written blog shows that your company wasn’t just thrown together. It shows that your site isn’t just a scam that could be taken down at the drop of a hat. It shows time, effort and dedication has gone in. This could sway customers who were previously unsure whether to order with you, or stick to one of your more established competitors. If you’re not much of a writer yourself, hire a freelancer to create you interesting, high quality posts and post at least once a week for maximum effect.