Maham Riaz (September 22, 2015)
Many entrepreneurs are running their business ventures from home, considering factors such as convenience and cost saving. While having a business setup within the confines of your home seems like an advantage as it saves you money, attracting and retaining customers becomes all the way more challenging. Whether you are running a bakery from home or have a small home based graphic design company, acquiring customers and offering them a satisfying experience can turn out to be a difficult task especially with fewer resources and not having a proper business outlet. However, if you focus on providing your customers great customer service, they are likely to come back to you and would do free word of mouth marketing for your brand. Have a look at the following tips that can help you attract and retain customers!
Choose an interesting name for your business, it should define your product range/service. For all home based businesses having an attention grabbing website and a strong social media presence is necessary. While choosing a logo design, use colors that speak for your product/service. For instance, if you are running a fast food delivery business, having a red colored logo is a good idea. The name of your business, website and logo are the first factors for attracting customers so make sure you have a short and catchy name for your business, a worth checking out website and a striking logo design.
Customers prefer businesses that excel at delivering great customer service, so even with fewer resources try to facilitate your customers in the best possible manner. If for instance you are running a made to order cake business from home, answer all customer queries promptly. While taking an order note down all instructions and ask if the customer wants to add anything else. Give your customers quality and fresh products and deliver them at the promised delivery time. A happy customer is likely to recommend your service to his/her friends, acquaintances and loved ones, so focus on giving your best to customers and they will spread positive word about your business.
A memorable customer experience is made up of small gestures like warmly greeting customers, remembering their names, helping them make a product choice, addressing their complaints instantly, offering them aesthetically appealing product packaging and offering them tea or coffee if they visit your home office/store. Keep your home office/store clean and properly organized, have proper sitting arrangement for clients and don’t keep them waiting. Develop personal connections with every customer who walks into your home office/outlet by actively communicating with them. Give your customers time and undivided attention, it is likely to win you more customers, along with earning you the loyalty of existing ones.
You can turn your customers into brand advocates by catering to their individual needs. Every customer wants his/her preferences to be taken care of. If you want customers to stay with your business and attract new ones, offer personalized service. Talk to every customer about his/her liking and modify your product/service according to a customer’s individual needs. This way you are likely to offer every customer a customized product and it would turn out to be a competitive advantage for your business.
The most traditional way of retaining customers is to offer them a little extra in the form of gifts or discounts. Though for small home based businesses it is hard to spare budget for gifts and giving too many discounts can impact the profitability margins but you can use items that are not costly and make thoughtful gifts. Instead of giving big discounts, initially give small discounts to your customers. If for instance, you are running a home based herbal beauty products’ business, give five percent off to first 50 customers and offer an incentive to the ones who subscribe to your newsletter, send them small makeup freebies. Gift cards, coupons and free samples are also good options for giveaways.
Appreciating your customers and improving your service according to their feedback can go a long way in developing lasting and strong relationship with customers. Thank every customer who shops from you, add a small handwritten thank you note with every delivery package and send a thank you e-mail appreciating the customers’ visit and encourage them to come again. If you are dealing with customers in person, it is easier to take feedback by just asking if they are happy with your service. Note down all the suggestions that you get from customers regarding your product/service and improve accordingly. Consider your customers the most valuable asset of your business and they would value your business in return.
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