Separating your business from the competition is everyone’s prerogative; using these simple tips we aim to help you improve your customer retention and further develop your unique selling proposition.

Define your USP

Firstly, you need to have an understanding of what your USP (unique selling proposition) is. This is the differentiating factor between you and your competitors, the thing that will set you apart and give you an edge. Your competitive advantage. This could be a higher quality product, a lower price, a better customer experience or even a new technological innovation. Comprehensive analysis of the USP will require a good understanding of your target market, any competitors and of course the industry at large.

Define your audience

Knowing who your target demographics are, is essential to getting your message to connect correctly. The process of finding out who they are, can shape up and take form through a variety of market research catalysts (largely dependant on how developed the business is). There isn’t necessarily a right way to pinpoint your audience but there are fundamental questions that need answering to, to ensure the right groups are being targeted. Targeted marketing allows small and medium businesses to compete with larger entities in relation to niche audiences.

Understanding your audience

Taking a closer look at your current customer base is always the first step; followed by answering why they come to your business for this sale. Drawing similarities between these customers, their characteristics and interests, and others likely to benefit from the service/product can aid in uncovering business opportunity. Equally as important is a competitor analysis: what are they doing? Who are they targeting? Why do their customers choose their service? Economies of scale (and many other reasons) would not favour acquiring their customers, through targeting the same market. This research has the potential to highlight niche markets that the competition are failing to notice. Being observant of industry trends will also benefit the business and enable more agility with altering USP as the industry dictates it so.

Testing and refinement

After you understand who the target audience is, who your competitors are and prevailing industry trends, there are a few more steps to go through. There are a series of assumptions about the aforementioned topics. These now need to be scrutinised, tested and refined. With your new results fresh from testing you can say with a far higher surety that the conclusions drawn hold more weight and aptly represent the assumptions made. Now with evidence based results there needs to be an effective way to communicate the refined USP. Don’t underestimate the importance of a concise, eloquent and effective pitch that will do all of your market research justice.

Now thats out of the way here are a few things you can do to improve your USP…

Address your target audience

Addressing the niche audience(s) through both the marketing message and through remarketing are going to improve your USP. An audience that’s better profiled and defined by characteristics which make it more likely to engage with your brand increase the utility on offer to prospective consumers. As mentioned earlier the first stage of this is to define your audience. With an audience defined, understanding how this labelled group currently interacts with the brand and how they choose to engage with the website.

The pipeline for consumption of your products and the audience segmentation are only so valuable without having something worthwhile to consume; construct engaging content. Regardless of the site type if the content is not quality expect to see high bounce rates and low conversions. The final process is a step which doesn’t ever come to a resolution; analysis and optimisation. These two stages will remain for the duration of the business; never assume because something is running well that it couldn’t be running better.

Help Chat / Easily contactable entity

Often overlooked as an unnecessary expense, the help chat feature on many websites has become a staple in online customer service. Chat boxes are provided at no cost to consumers to interact with a “representative” of the company and in return there are massive benefits to the business.  The cost to the business is far reduced from providing phone support on both ends of the spectrum: tolls and man hours. Improved sales through recommendations and advice. Improved customer service/loyalty through more expedient resolution of problems.

There are benefits from data pulled from chat logs including discovering customer grievances and being able to take onboard the complaint in a more meaningful way. There are many paid chat services which can take this responsibility off your hands and can greatly assist with building lasting relationships. Alternatively, if the scale doesn’t warrant outsourcing there are options available to redirect chat to a personal phone or email. Having the option available to consumers is a major asset in establishing trust.

Speed/Price/Tracking of shipping

Having a reliable shipping partner/courier mail service is essential when building a loyal customer base. Speed, price, tracking and convenience are all factors which determine whether or not to use the service to send another parcel. Sendle is a premier courier service, and Auspost alternative, which allows small and medium business to ship like the enterprise clients.

The pricing is more affordable than competitors, parcel tracking is on offer, 1400 convenient pick up locations, 3 different account models and through partnerships offering international shipping to 200 countries. From your store or warehouse to the door of a consumer has never been easier or more affordable. Cheap postage from a carbon neutral provider offering postal tracking and guarantees around price and collection make this company an asset to help you stand out.

Follow these tips and watch your customers hang out on your site for longer and utilize them to enhance your unique selling proposition further.

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