Take a few minutes to stop and review where your small business is headed as 2016 winds down.
Even if things are going exactly as you want them, see if there is any area you might need the least bit of improvement in. Remember, winning companies never got complacent, so don’t fall into the trap of thinking you can never better your brand.
That said your customers (current and potential) are great sounding boards for what is good (and bad if necessary) about your business.
For example, if your small business revolves around the home renovation industry, do you follow-up with your customers after completing a project for them? Little things such as that extra special touch can be the difference between them being a one-time customer and being with you for years to come.
So, is your small business in need of some renovations?
Don’t Allow Your Brand to Get Complacent
In order to lessen the odds of your brand becoming complacent, make sure you are following up on these items:
- Customer service – First and foremost, how would you rate your level of customer service? Be honest, not automatically saying you’re the best thing that ever happened to the business world. For example, if you do home renovations/restorations/additions, do you keep the customer informed from start to finish about how things are going? Whether you are working as a part of Utah Website Development or somewhere else in the country, the majority of customers want to be kept up to speed on how the project is progressing, if there are any snags along the way, and of course if the budget is going to change. Good customer service means not only being timely, but also being upfront. The last thing one of your customers wants is a nasty surprise with either the timing of the project and/or the final cost. Be that small business owner who delivers unparalleled customer service;
- Informational source – Don’t think that your small business can’t be a leading informational source in your respective industry. For instance, a home restoration business should consider (if it doesn’t have one already) writing and promoting a blog on its website. The blog will serve as a solid home restoration point for homeowners to come to before planning a project. They can find out what the latest home restoration trends are, what to expect as far as costs, and when the best time is to begin such a project. For example, starting a home restoration project right before the holidays can lead to all kinds of headaches, especially if you plan on having company over. Likewise, for many of those people living in cold weather regions of the country, wintertime home restoration projects can present issues too;
- Embracing the future – Lastly, make sure your small business not only looks at technology as key to your success, but something you simply can’t live without. While some small business owners use technology only as a last resort (or barely at all), others are embracing it constantly. From mobile marketing to all the various social media options available to you, make sure you are not anti-technology. More and more consumers are using their smartphones etc. to download apps, so having your own small business app is really a necessity, not a choice in 2016. If you don’t already have one, either work on getting one on your own or hire professionals to do it for you. Once you have an active one, and once you put it out there for the public to digest, you should see an uptick in business. With the digital age only expecting to grow more and more in the coming years, you really need to be a part of it in more ways than one.
Your small business will likely need some renovations on occasion, so don’t be afraid to give your brand a new look.
Yes, some consumers prefer brands that are just the same today as they were 30 years ago.
On the other hand, some consumers want to see those small businesses they patronize change with the times.
Which small business will you be?
About the Author: Dave Thomas covers small business topics on the web.