Customers gain new opportunities to buy every single day.
Forbes estimates that tens of thousands of new businesses make their way online every 24 hours.
Even if those companies are not in your industry, the noise they create keeps potential customers away from your website.
How can you fight this rising tide of digital business without spending yourself into bankruptcy? Let's take a look at the best ways your small business can compete with the big boys in an ultra-competitive industry.
Understand the Ways People Buy Products
There is a reason that profits in an industry always create a pyramid - the top companies always make the most money.
Below them, a larger contingent of lesser companies make up the middle of the pack.
Below them, you see the largest component of the industry comprised with companies that will likely be dead in five years or less.
Ninety percent of companies do not make it past year five.
You want to be one of the companies on top.
Once you are, you will not have to worry about the tens of thousands of companies that make their way online every 24 hours.
Your main concern should never be outside competition. Truthfully, your only competition is yourself, because no matter how many companies are online. If a customer is on your website, then you are the only business in front of that person. The sale is yours to take or to lose regardless of the number of competitors.
Make sure your website is designed and optimized to convert every visitor into a lead or sale.
Make it Count Each and Every Time
Once that customer is in front of your products or website, your customer service makes the difference in the sale or the bounce.
This is especially true if your business is relatively small.
What you do not have in multimillion dollar marketing budgets you can easily make up for in personal service.
The production value of your products can only take you so far, and you can only charge so much for production improvements. However, the profit that you can make from proper branding and customer service is virtually unlimited.
Consider the difference between Virgin Airlines and its competition. Other airlines compete on price and fight like rabid dogs for customers. Virgin, however, always remains above the fray. People who fly Virgin Airlines always fly Virgin Airlines. The difference is the customer service that customers receive there.
A "coach" seat on a Virgin flight may cost as much as a first class seat on another airline, and people pay it happily because of the consistent customer service that Virgin gives.
Focus on the Customer
You will not win at mass marketing. You cannot match the production value of your top industry competition. However, you can always treat a customer like a king. That’s in your control. That’s often one thing a large competitor can’t do. They can’t reach out to each customer and touch their lives personally. While you’re still able to do this, do it.
Give them a call to say thanks. Write a letter. Show your customers that you truly appreciate their business. They’ll pay you back in more ways than you can quantify.