do you know your customers?

From the smallest convenience store to the biggest factory, every business has one thing in common: without a steady stream of happy satisfied customers, no business can survive for long.

If you want to build a great brand and grow your business, you need to focus on the needs of your customers. But determining what those needs are is easier said than done. Some businesses invest in customer surveys, filling up inboxes with inquiries and populating their websites with pop-ups, but that technique has limited potential. With overflowing inboxes and ubiquitous pop-up ads, a good portion of those customer surveys go unanswered, and the ones that are submitted can create skewed results.

How can businesses find out what their customers want and how to serve them better without asking them directly? That is where the field of customer analysis comes in, and if you are not analyzing your customers, you could be missing out on a golden opportunity. Here are some of the business benefits of knowing the customer and analyzing their behavior.

Lower Customer Acquisition Costs
Customer acquisition costs can be a profit killer for businesses, especially small firms and new startups. Finding new customers requires a combination of costly strategies, from advertising and targeted marketing to underground campaigns aimed at building name recognition and brand awareness. Without quality customer analysis, much of those customer acquisition efforts could be wasted. If you are looking for customers in the wrong places, you are unlikely to be successful. Quality customer analysis can help you fine tune your efforts, so you can find those hidden buyers and turn them into loyal ambassadors for your brand.

Better Customer Retention
Studies have shown that retaining an existing customer costs far less than attracting a new one. By helping businesses know their customers better, the right analysis can improve retention, boosting profits by enhancing efficiencies and avoiding unnecessary costs. If you want your business to be successful, focusing on customer retention is always a good place to start. Your existing customers are your biggest and most valuable assets, and anything you can do to keep them will be a positive for your business and your brand.

More Streamlined (and Effective) Customer Service
Customer service can be a challenge for businesses, but the right analysis can make the job easier. Knowing who your customers are can make meeting their needs simpler, streamlining your customer service operations, enhancing efficiency and improving effectiveness. On-going customer analysis can also uncover deficiencies in your existing customer service operations, so you can beef up your offerings and build a better brand. Customer analysis might reveal, for instance, that a large percentage of customers are coming from a different time zone, and the business in question could respond with extended customer service hours or even a second shift.

Increased Sales and Improved Profits
No matter what you have to sell, it is your customers who buy it. Without those customers, sales will quickly fall to zero and profits will plunge just as quickly. The profitability of your business and your ability to grow your sales is directly tied to the quality of your customer base. By analyzing your existing customers and finding out what they have in common, you can better market your products, so profits keep growing and sales growth can continue.

Customer analysis can do more than drive sales of existing products. By uncovering customer needs, the right analysis can help you develop new products and services; ones your customers may not even know they need. The new product lines you develop in this manner could drive sales and profits even more, helping you build an even better business.

If you do not know your customer, you are missing out on a great opportunity. The more you know about the men and women who buy your products and consume your services, the easier it will be to meet their needs. The benefits of customer analysis run wide and deep, and the sooner you start the process the better your business could be.

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