The best way to Keep Forward of Altering Buyer Behaviors

Transformation is a word you hear a lot when talking about the future of companies and industries. It’s not just a business buzzword, however – it’s a relevant point as customer needs and behaviors are constantly evolving. As a small business owner, how do you stay ahead of expectations for your company’s growth?

January is a time to return attention to our goals, habits, and resolutions. So, as you think about the opportunities ahead and how you can transform yourself, there are three tips to keep in mind as you plan.

1. Talk to your customers.

Well, I know this may seem easy, but most of us don’t do it enough.

Your customers are your customers for a reason. Do you know why they come to your company instead of your competitors? Ask them how well you are serving their needs. Is there anything your company could do better or differently to alleviate its weaknesses?

These questions shed light on how you may need to change your business practices over the course of the year, thereby growing your business.

By talking about their needs, you may be able to identify solutions that your company offers that it is not yet benefiting from for its own business. Additionally, most customers value the human connection and relationships that small business owners can provide.

For example, in conversation with our customers at the UPS Store, we discovered that they were looking for practical solutions for their daily online purchases. That’s why we’ve partnered with Cole Haan to provide a no-label, box-less return service for their goods through our network of nearly 5,000 locations across the country.

2. Consider an update.

Contrary to popular belief, some people like change (even if they don’t always admit it), especially when expanded offerings or benefits are added to the picture. When was the last time you took a close look at what you were offering your customers? As a restaurant owner, have you thought about changing your menu or creating seasonal specials? Perhaps you could consider updating your website or exploring a new social media platform to reach new customers.

Last year the UPS Store introduced a new, contemporary design for our retail stores. We’ve searched for and tested prototypes for years and found that our redesign offers our customers and franchisees a more seamless experience while keeping in mind the latest demands emerging from technology and e-commerce.

While people may tell you that they are not ready for change, how can you surprise them by anticipating their needs before they know them?

3. Find new solutions.

Over the past year we’ve had to think differently about how we run our business, whether it’s contactless payments or new online tools. Keep pushing the boundaries of how you can do things differently.

Is there anything new that you wanted to test for your company? One thing I’ve learned is that our careers are full of learning experiences. Always test and learn. If something doesn’t work the way you hoped, what have you learned from it and how will you move forward?

Use this month to reflect and reset how you will exceed your customers’ expectations this year.

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