5 ways for your business to stay competitive with RangewellFebruary 28, 2017
Being in business can often be a tricky and troublesome affair, especially when local competition enters the fray. Of course, running a business in an industry you know and love can be highly rewarding, but to remain competitive you’ll require a savvy and well-focused mind, not to mention access to essential funds. No matter how unique you may think your business is, sooner or later someone else will always come along with the same, or similar idea, hoping to plant a stake in your share of the market. If this happens it’s time to up your game, present yourself as the big dog, letting them know they’re just a little pup. To help you achieve this the business finance extraordinaires at Rangewell have come up with a list of 5 ways to stay competitive:
Pricing is no doubt a major factor for customers when choosing how and where to conduct their business. However, it’s not a simple easy fix matter and will require some trial and error. Finding the right balance that takes into account your business’s needs and that of your customers’ is a must. When it comes to adjusting your prices or offering value for money you have 3 options:
a) Freebies – Yes, freebies. Customers always like having a little something else thrown in to sweeten the deal. This can come as part of a promotion, but shouldn’t be too costly for your business either. As such, presentation is key.
b) Raise prices – Your business finances may love you for it, but your customers may well not. If you need to raise your prices you need to ensure your customers feel that it’s necessary for ensuring the highest quality goods and services, of which they wouldn’t find elsewhere.
c) Payment methods – When it comes to transactions and bookings, choice is king. Although cash is still the most widely used currency, more and more British consumers want to use card payment options such as ‘Chip and Pin’. If they can’t, some customers may feel inclined to walk away from a transaction entirely, causing you to miss out on vital opportunities.
2. Develop your products or services
Ensuring that your business is producing the highest quality goods and services is vital. This is especially true if you’re intent on raising prices. After all, if you were the customer, would you shop at your business if you could get the same, or better, service elsewhere for less? Of course not! To maintain that all-important competitive edge, installing more or upgrading to better equipment can help massively.
3. Customer experience
Although the saying ‘service with a smile’ is such a cliche, it really does work! You’re not just operating a business, you’re also at the helm of a brand. You and your staff need to present your brand in the best possible light. This absolutely means lots of smiling, making short and friendly conversations, being as helpful as possible and being open about your price schemes. Present your business as an affluent brand and the customers will come back time and again. Set down customer service guidelines with your employees and ensure that they stick to them at all times… no matter what!
Presentation is another vital area for customers. Your shop front is one of the first things your customers will see and judge you by. Looking unruly or shabby won’t do you any favours and will send them into the clutches of your competition. Plus, you also need to ensure all customer areas are presentable, well maintained and up to date with the local trends. Of course, this can easily rack up quite a hefty cost for your business but, ultimately, carrying out the necessary changes will be worth every single penny.
5. Targeting the right audience
Attracting the right audience for your business can be extremely frustrating, but is vital to your long-term success. Forget posting pamphlets on a community billboard, online platforms are where the real marketing power is at. In order to reach your target audience, you need to set up a professional website featuring excellent content and professional images expressing what your business is all about. Plus, you need to get your brand known across social media, using it to redirect traffic back to your website. You’ll also need to get up to speed with search engine optimisation (SEO), otherwise creating a professional looking website will be all for nothing if it can’t be seen.
Now I know what you’re thinking, making these crucial changes to your business is going to cost, and I’d be lying if I said otherwise. However, your business doesn’t need to carry these costs alone, a well-placed business finance package, such as refurbishment finance or asset finance, could be all you need to succeed and minimise the impact on your capital. However, with the alternative industry being so incredibly vast, making sure you’re getting the best value product for your business can be a daunting endeavour. But with Rangewell, you don’t to go it alone.
Our values are simple – We’re on your side. Our services are clear and transparent. We support a wide range of SME businesses of every shape and size, for finding every type of finance. Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn for business tips and tricks, and feel free to call us on 0203 637 2340 if you’d like to chat about what we can do for you.
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