8 Tips to Get Customers to Choose You Over the Competition

8 Tips to Get Customers to Choose You Over the Competition

Every business owner knows competition is super competitive these days. Whether you are selling products or offering professional services, you need to work hard to outshine your competitors.

We’ve spoken with some of our top performing Dream businesses to find out what they do to set themselves apart from the competition. Here are eight proven tips to help you attract customers and build loyalty:

  1. Focus on benefits instead of products.

    Think of what you can do for your customers instead of what you can sell them. For example, gyms all sell gym memberships and personal training sessions. Instead, help create self-love warriors by focusing on the healthy glow that comes from exercising regularly. Custom home builders don’t just sell designs, building materials and fixtures. They create luxurious spaces where families spend time together and make memories. Dentists create beautiful smiles and confidence. Conference centres connect customers with education and networking opportunities. What benefits set your business apart?

  2. Think of creative ways to get customers through the door.

    Who’s going to turn down free lemonade on a balmy summer day or hot chocolate in the winter? Customers will appreciate the gesture and you will gain additional foot traffic!

    Invite a guest speaker or offer a mini-class. Host a local band, open mic night or reading circle. Teach your customers something new. Partner with an animal rescue or charity doing good work in the area. Hold a contest. Bring in a photographer. Offer a gift or discount to existing customers who refer their friends. The ideas are as limitless as your imagination!

  3. Do your research and know your customers.

    There are different ways to add value beyond offering great products. It doesn’t matter what business you are in – you are more likely to close a sale if you know your clients’ dreams and desires.

    Are they looking to save time? Let them call ahead, then have their items ready at the cash when they arrive. Consider offering delivery in the local area or provide free valet parking.

    Do the clients you are targeting want to know more about a product or service before they commit? Try out the items you stock so you can share your own personal experiences. Continuously train your staff and offer them incentives to shop with you too. There’s a reason that many businesses offer a generous employee discount – it builds stronger brand ambassadors.

    Perhaps your customers want a stellar service experience? Take a genuine interest in them as people, look them in the eye when you talk, answer their questions and let them know you are there to help with whatever it is that they need.

  4. Build relationships.

    Work to form lasting connections and bonds. Be warm and welcoming each time they visit you in person. If you can, stay connected via social media or an email newsletter.

    “The landscaping company I’ve used over the years is great at staying in touch with me. They email me each season with helpful tips and offers to keep my lawn looking its best and I follow them on Facebook too,” says Gail from Oakville, Ontario. “They also call me if I forget to book a service that they know I would want, like putting up my Christmas lights, and I really appreciate the reminders.”

    “The barista at my local coffee shop knows my name, how I like my drinks and what I like to eat for breakfast. The personal service keeps me coming back several times a week,” says Raymond, who works in mid-town Toronto.

  5. Share your expertise.

    Are you an accounting or marketing expert? Create a series of short YouTube videos to help your clients build their businesses. Being generous with your time and knowledge will attract clients who want to learn from you and do business with you!

  6. Monitor the competition.

    It is important to shop your competitors and know what they are doing. Visit them in person on a regular basis to stay one step ahead.

    “I do a comparison shop every two weeks to check out prices, products being offered, the way products are displayed and to see what type of service I receive,” says retail manager Jacqui Jeffrey. “Sometimes I go more frequently, especially if a customer tells me a competitor is offering a much lower price on a specific product.”

    In addition to visiting their physical locations, check out your competition on social media too. It’s important to nurture your own distinct voice online, but knowing the platforms they are using and types of content they are posting may help you combat some competitive threats. You can also call in the experts to save time on social media advertising.

  7. Ask your customers for ideas.

    This is an easy and inexpensive way to get information about what you are doing right and why they’ve chosen to do business with you. Ask them where else they shop and why. Is there something your competitors are doing that they like or don’t like? Something you could be doing better? Use this feedback to improve anything that will keep your customers coming back.

  8. Make your customers feel safe when doing business with you.

    This can be achieved with easy-to-understand warranties and guarantees, policies to protect personal information and secure payment processing.

You’ve worked hard to start and grow your business. Using these tips will help you attract customers, retain them and create long-lasting relationships so that you can continue to do what you love!