You rely on many resources to help you run things smoothly: from employees acting as your eyes and ears to your smartphone providing a source of constant contact and information.
But, it might surprise you to find out that you’ve had a game-changing asset right under your nose that you may have been overlooking: the customers that walk in the door every day!
Yes, of course customers provide you with revenue, but look beyond that. Your customers don’t just help your bottom line when they are in the store, they can be the driving and guiding force behind the decisions that grow your business.
Think about it with me…
Loyal customers help you grow.
As a small business, connecting with the local community is vital to growing your business. Take a minute to ask your customers what they would like to see in your store or how you could expand your offers to meet their needs. After all, no one knows what they want better than they do.
Customers can improve your marketing.
Customers often know what they want to see from you. Instead of wondering how well your marketing campaign is doing, ask them. Did they get your latest direct mail piece? Have they visited your website? Ask them what they would like to see from you and how often. Make sure to track which offers are being redeemed.
For example, before spending time on social media ask your customers if they are using social networks or if they’d rather get information from your website or via email. You’ll save yourself some time and make your marketing more effective.
Disgruntled customers can help you spot trouble areas.
You work really hard to provide great customer service and valuable products, but we all make mistakes sometimes. When the inevitable happens, don’t just fix the immediate problem. Take a minute to talk to the customer and delve a little deeper into their concern. You might just find a bigger issue that needs fixing.
Bonus: According to a recent study, 80% of customers who think they’ve been treated fairly after a mistake become loyal customers.
They can help you stay ahead of the competition.
It’s no secret that staying ahead of the competition requires being alert and maintaining a culture of constant improvement. There is no greater source to help you do just that than your customers. Asking for regular feedback can help you identify ways you can improve even when everything is running smoothly.
There are so many ways customers can help you understand your community and learn about your business. So, don’t forget to reward your customers for taking some of their valuable time to give you feedback!
So are you overlooking your best asset as soon as she walks out the door? How are you learning from your customers?