The Importance of Knowing Your Customer

Knowing your customer is key for any business endeavor. Successful business owners understand what their customers want and the most effective way of making their product or service available. The depth of knowledge is also crucial – it requires knowing more than their names, ages and incomes. As a business owner, knowing your customer’s hobbies, tastes and interests along with what they watch, listen to and read can be a profitable advantage.

Understanding your customer’s buying behavior is also very important. As a business owner, you need to comprehend what type of person is most likely to need or want the product or service you provide. These are some of the key questions that successful business owners need to ask themselves on a daily basis:

  • What is their reason for purchasing your product or service?
  • How often are they going to need to buy that product or utilize the service? If you can be proactive with your outreach efforts around the time you know they will purchase, chances are the customer won’t look elsewhere.
  • Who are they buying for? Your messaging and promotion is going to be contingent upon if they are purchasing for themselves or for someone else.
  • Where are they most likely to purchase? If you are a brick and mortar business and hear from your customers that they would prefer to order online, then it makes sense to change your business model to include an ecommerce or online ordering component.

Companies that know what their clients want and what they expect can also work on customizing the customer experience to create loyalty and repeat business. Smaller and more quick-to-respond entrepreneurs and small-business owners already have the upper hand for achieving this competitive advantage. Simply by extending the length of your customer’s interaction will provide a greater opportunity to create a positive experience and build a strong relationship. Listen to your customer’s feedback and provide sound advice, even if you sometimes have to direct your customer to another source.

As a business owner, it is crucial to take every advantage to outsmart your competitor, and understanding and building upon your customer knowledge and relationship will put you ahead of the game.

Author:  Jamaal Ewing, GROW Microloan Program Manager

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