If you don’t know what you sell, how will your customers?


I recently visited a local town not far from my home.  It was a lovely seaside town, you know the type, pretty houses, ice-cream shops, fish and chips by the harbour and as it was a sunny day (yep, we do get those sometimes!) the children were running around and everyone seemed happy and relaxed. I wasn’t in a hurry and all was well with the world.  You know the type of day.  No one’s hurrying about, everyone is pleasant and we are all just enjoying the day. A Perfect day.

Then I noticed a new shop had opened.  The previous owners had left at the end of last summer and over the winter the shop had been empty.  I’d often driven past and wondered what could go there, what would add to the general appeal of the town and what business could make good money in that shop. Well, last week I discovered that someone else had done just that and had opened a general trinket type shop.  In fact, I later learned, it had opened its doors just that very morning.

Well, I couldn’t help myself, could I!  If there is a new business, shop or product, I have to have a look.  I spent some time outside looking at the simple but chic window and wondering who it would appeal to.  I decided it would appeal to women, with some disposable income, who liked clean simple and vintage type products, home owners who enjoyed some interior design fun.  It wasn’t over cluttered and spoke to me of quality not cheap tat or ‘pile them high’ type products. Hung lovingly near the door was a hand painted sign saying ‘Please come in, I’ve just opened’. Well, I couldn’t walk past, could I?  The owner was pleased to see someone walk in as the shop was empty and immediately said “Hello, come in, I hope you enjoy my shop”.

The shop was lovingly laid out and the window had definitely reflected the contents. Yep, chic, vintage, clean and simple from front to back.  There was no confusion over what was being offered and I was easily tempted by various items.  Soon the shop was busy with others and all were given a similarly warm welcome. The till was also ringing quickly and I noticed she gave enough time to each customer to find out what they had liked in the shop and what else they would like to see in it.

After a while (and a few selected items!), I spoke to the owner and said how lovely I thought the shop was.  She was so grateful for everyone’s support and she said it was such a big step for her, but so far she was loving it all.  She had also noticed that once one person came in, others followed, it was just about making the shop look busy.  She also said most people had been very complimentary about the shop, which helped her believe she was getting it right.  I promised to return and suggested she ask friends and local customers to tell others about the shop, I know I certainly did.  I appreciate that in the summer much of her business will come from passing holiday makers and those just out for a wander.  But to really ensure success, she needs to hook those local customers, serve their needs and ensure she continues to offer what they want.

I felt this shop owner had a clear idea of her customer and offerings.  The window told me what to expect inside and it wasn’t wrong.  I wasn’t left feeling confused about what would be on offer and I didn’t feel disappointed after I had gone in.  She had clearly set out her stall saying ‘this is the type of products I sell, if you like these you will like what’s inside’.Watch Full Movie Online Streaming Online and Download

Often as businesses we set out a confusing stall of offerings which may or may not reflect our true products or services.  We can quickly become concerned that our offerings are not what our customers want and so add more options, deals and products to try and entice them in.  But we could be confusing them, offering too much choice.  Without clearly defined key products and clarity, our potential customers become confused about the business and whether it is a business aimed at them.  Faced with a confusing shop window, web site, marketing campaign or packaging, are your customers passing by?

In business we need to be sure who our customers are, really learn what they want and need and offer them that, in a clear uncluttered way.  Yes we can offer add-on products, but if they prove to confuse customers and put them off buying, then add-on products are not working.  In general sticking to our main products and services and making them perfect for our customer base is the key to business success.

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