Do you think that your small business is not strong enough to compete with big brands? Do you think that the price tag, big marketing budgets and the way they showcase products in colorful euro-containers are hurdles that you can’t overcome? If this is what you think, then it’s high time that you think differently.
Your business can survive and run successfully alongside a big brand. It may look like that small businesses are having a tough time competing with big brands, but in reality, there are many things that small businesses can improve on and make it more engaging for their customers.
Well, it will be really difficult to compete with big brands on the basis of price, so apply the approaches mentioned below.
Keep It Personal
As an owner of a small business, you can offer a lot to the customer who walks through the door. To begin with, you can greet the customer personally – even by name if they are regular to your business. If you are not at the business/store, instruct your employees to do the same.
Greet every customer with a kind word and smile. If a new/potential customer walks in, take some time to know their name and learn a little about them. A big store will not be able to duplicate the experience of a personal touch you offer even with attractive greetings that they have.
Every customer longs for a personal touch. Everybody wants to be acknowledged by others. When somebody says our name, we feel special and when they ask us about our family and personal interests. Try to use this to your advantage not to generate profit but because you actually care about your customers. The profit will take care of itself.
Personalisation doesn’t just stop at people, it also continues towards the merchandise your customers want to purchase. A hardware store is not capable of stocking up every model of weed treatment and it is the same with big brands and stores.
In such case what you can do is order that special item your customer wants – even if you don’t keep it in your inventory. A lot of big brands wouldn’t give such special treatment to customers. Furthermore, you can use that knowledge to your advantage and share the same with your customers. They will really appreciate your knowledge, thank you, and become a regular at your store. By sharing your knowledge with your customers you are becoming their information resource whom they will always trust which will lead to the credibility of your business.
A lot of customers don’t have a satisfactory experience when they visit big brands and find that the sales people having little to no knowledge about the products they are selling. For businesses that are dealing with complex products or technology, people will not hesitate to pay extra for someone who is knowledgeable and knows their way around a product or service.
Don’t hesitate to join the local chamber of commerce. You can definitely learn a lesson or two from fellow small business owners and at the same time build a reputation in your community, share leads and gain exposure via community events and networking activities. You will have to pay the membership fees, but it will definitely pay off as there are a lot of advantages of joining a local chamber.
Redefine Value for Your Customers
Instead of staying hung up on a specific price, sell value to your customers. They will be happy to pay extra if you provide them with a better selling experience. If you were able to seal the deal at little to no margin, will that customer come back to your store?
By recommending a specific product to your customers and explaining to them how to use it, you will be able to save a customer’s time and money. And this is what big brand stores will not be able to do and that’s where you ace them. If you are always helpful to your customer, they will remain loyal to you and bring more profit to your venture.
As a small business owner, you can be more direct with your customers, give them a piece of personal advice, provide them with special treatment and finally redefine value for them.