How to Maintain your Customer Base

Losing customers in a shrinking economy is one of the biggest challenges faced by business owners today. The economy keeps fluctuating and it is very important to maintain your customer base when you are going through a down stage. Very few customers go after brand loyalty these days. As the competition rises, preserving your customer base is becoming as tough as finding new ones.


It is important for business owners to find ways to keep their customer base without competing only with prices. Here are a few tips, which can help to maintain your customer base:

Offer the best customer service you can:

Though this point is pretty obvious, it is very hard to ensure that you are offering your customers the best. You must remember that this is an ongoing task and conducting regular service level checks is very important to ensure that your customers are happy.

Train your staff constantly:

Performance evaluation of your staff is important and so are meetings with your employees to find out if there are any issues that needs sorting out. Regular seminars to help your employees with customer service tips can also help to improve your staff efficiency.

Offer customer loyalty rewards:

You have to provide a reason for your customers to come back. Offer loyalty rewards and special discounts to the most loyal customers.

Offer premium service:

Many long-term customers and a few new ones too, would want extra attention. You must offer a premium service option to give these customers special attention and exclusive discounts.

Keep in touch with your customers:

Send them emails about your latest offers and make personal phone calls to the customers that you cannot afford to lose.

Take surveys and exit polls:

You can get to know your customers through feedback forms and polls. The data that is collected through such media can provide you good ideas to improve your service and also to identify new opportunities for growing your business.

Simple Marketing Strategies for a New Business

Ever since the economic crisis hit us, most of the businesses have reduced marketing budgets. However, by maintaining a few marketing strategies, you can pull your business ahead of the competition. Most often, when the company is on a crisis mode, the marketing budget is the first to be affected. This is true especially in the case of small businesses and start-ups.


Communicating with your customers is important and this is exactly what is intended out of marketing. You have to research find out the needs of your customers to maintain and develop your customer base and also to identify new business opportunities that you can pursue.

The finest opening point for any market strategy is research. There are so many simple and effective marketing strategies that you can adopt to gain an edge over the competition in your business field.
Researching for marketing strategies is a very important task. You have to be fully aware of the goal of your research, which is to identify your prospective customer base. The three main items that you have to focus on when you research for marketing strategies are as follows.

The Internet is your Holy Grail:

Use the internet to find out cheap online survey applications. These will help you to get opinions from your customers. Be specific when you prepare your survey questions. No one wants to go through a long survey. Most of the customers are going to have a short attention span and so you have to make sure that you stick to engaging questions.

Google is the most important market research tool. The special functions like Google Analytics can help small businesses understand their customer base. By using keyword researches, you can also investigate competitor businesses.

Collecting information is important:

You have to interview find out the prospect your business by interviewing prospective customers and identifying their needs and requirements. You can start within your family and friends and then move on to the outside customers through email or phone. Social Media is another great tool to get to your customers. With the help of social media, you can also find out what your customers are saying about your products and services. To improve your business you need to know what your customers are saying about you.

Research the competition too!

You also have to find out how your competitors are doing in the business. By becoming a customer of your competitor, you can identify every part of their business. This will help you to find ways to surpass their product and also to pick up ideas to integrate in your business. You have to be a customer to identify your customer needs. So try to test as many aspects of your competitor’s business. This will definitely help you move up the graph.

When your customers have decided to tighten the strings of their purse, it would be foolish to ignore them. Several big businesses have actually gained success by strengthening marketing strategies during times of economic crisis. So buckle up and start researching to find out your customer needs. This can help you elevate your business to the next level very easily.

How to Reduce Business Running Costs

It is important for small businesses to look for ways to reduce overhead costs so as to increase their profits. It is also important to reduce costs without compromising on the quality of goods and services that are offered. The only option that you have is to redistribute company resources after understanding what you don’t need and need for your business brand building.


Here are a few ways you can follow to reduce overhead costs.

Keep track of where your money goes:
Easy as it sounds, it is not such an easy task to understand how and where the money is spent, especially in the growing stage. However, there are a few things can be tracked. For example, you have to make sure you are well-stocked, but not over-stocked. Purchasing items in bulk is good for getting a good discount, but the storage costs and unexpected changes in the market can leave you looted.

Outsource to save money:
Outsourcing your requirements for services like IT, accounting and marketing can help you save some money. However, you have to choose the best services at the most competitive rates. Outsourcing your tasks in the initial stages is a cost effective task.

Hire employees intelligently:
Paying your employees is going to be one of the major entries in your budget calculations. So, you have to make sure that you hire the right people to build your business. Training your employees will also ensure you that you have the best people working for you. Remember that you are running a business and don’t be afraid to terminate anyone who is not performing well.

Go environment-friendly:
You can also make some savings by going environment friendly. There are several ways like going paperless to installing energy saving lights for reducing running costs.

Reducing overhead costs should be an ongoing process. Regularly check all your business expenses and you will be happy to see the considerable amount of money that you are saving each time.

Tips to start your business

Today’s volatile economy makes it important for small start-up businesses and entrepreneurs to find out ways to reduce business overhead costs. Cutting expenses is the easiest way to increase your profits from a business.


However, it is very difficult to cut costs without compromising on the efficiency your goods and services. It has also been noted that most of the new businesses that are being started today do not survive over a period of more than two years.

To avoid the most common mistakes that are being made by new businesses, you have to first understand the reasons why such ventures usually fail. Here is a briefing of the most common pitfalls of new businesses and about how to avoid them.

No adequate research

When you have an idea for a business, the first thing you have to do is study the market for your product or service. You have to find out if you and your product has a place in the market, both in terms of customers and competitors. Venturing into an area with lots of strong competitors could be very risky. Also, bringing out a service or product that is not very acceptable to customers will also not work well.

No start-up capital

You have to have enough money in hand to run the business for the first few months expecting no profit at all. Invest your capital in the most important resources and be careful not to be wasteful. For example, in most cases, you might not need a fully-fledged office space and lots of employees when you are starting your business. Begin with virtual office solutions and then expand when you start getting profits from the venture.

No Planning

Devise a proper business plan. No matter the size of your business, you must make a good business plan which will be your guide to running the business. Detail out all your business goals and lay out a reasonable financial budget. Consider and note down all the marketing strategies that you can think of as well.

With these precautions in mind, you can most of the time save your business from drowning. However, you see that your business has started sinking, then you have to take the steps to stop the rot.

• Review your business plan again: When you start feeling that things are not moving as per planned, don’t ignore it. Make sure you review your plans and look into how you can overcome the crisis right from the earliest stages.

• Get help with secure funding: If lack of money is the only thing that is killing your business, then speak to reputed banks and avail a loan for your business. Finding a business partner who can share the costs is also a good idea.

• Reduce your expenses and avoid debt: You have to check every possibility to reduce running costs without compromising on your service or product quality. Using virtual office solutions instead of real office space could be one of the easiest ways to reduce business costs. Reducing staff is also an option.

• Call it quits when you feel things are not working: When you feel your business is on the slow track and facing continual failures, call it quits. Don’t try to run a business on debts only. This could affect your life on the whole.

• Ask for help: There are so many successful entrepreneurs and businessmen around. Ask for advice and listen to what they have to say. Most of them would be happy to help.

Running a business could be really difficult especially in its initial years. Learn to identify the common mistakes and follow tips to avoid them to achieve success in your business.