Did you know that around 90% of online buyers now consult reviews before deciding which products to pop in their cart? In the modern world, reputation is everything in business, and we hang on the words of others. If your brand has got a brilliant reputation, you’re going to find it a lot easier to keep the cash registers ringing than you would if your name was tainted or people were indifferent about your business. If you’re looking to boost sales, improve review scores and ensure your clients have a positive view of your brand, here are some simple ways to enhance your image.
Delivering on promises
Consumers expect certain standards, and if you offer a service or you make a promise, a buyer will expect you to deliver without any issues. If you’re selling a product, and you offer next-day delivery, your client will expect the item they have purchased to arrive the next working day as promised. If this doesn’t happen, they may ask for a refund, and they may think twice about using your service again or recommending it to friends and family. As a business owner, it’s crucial to deliver on any promises you make. If you let people down, they might not give you a second chance. Make sure you have the workforce, the supply chain, and the logistics in place to satisfy your customers’ demands. In the event that things do go wrong, contact your customers, keep them in the loop, and most importantly, apologize for the inconvenience. If there’s an issue with the courier that means that parcel is going to arrive a day later than planned, email or call the client, explain the situation, and offer a refund for the delivery fee. Don’t ignore the problem, and hope that your customer won’t mind.
Doing things by the book
When you run a business, it’s vital to ensure that you do everything according to the letter of the law. If you flout regulations, there’s a risk that your reputation could end up in tatters. Prioritize safety in the workplace, make sure you’re aware of employee and customer rights, and seek legal advice when drawing up contracts, branding your business, and coming up with product ideas. Whatever industry you operate in, you need to make sure that you’re aware of legal restrictions and guidelines. If you run a medical business, for example, you’ll be required to comply with a raft of measures. Even simple things like making sure your X-rays are marked using markers from KemperMedical.com could make the difference between staying above water and dealing with lawsuits. Today, even a small issue can escalate very quickly due to the popularity of social media and 24-hour news platforms, and nobody wants their business to go viral for the wrong reasons.
Encouraging customers to leave reviews and make recommendations
Statistics show that 90% of consumers read online reviews before visiting business websites or checking out product pages. Reviews hold a lot of influence and power, so it’s incredibly important for brands to attract positive attention. You want your company to be at the top of the pile in terms of ratings and scores. You can improve and enhance your reputation by making a concerted effort to prioritize customer service and ensure your services and products are high-quality. Encourage your clients to leave reviews, and offer incentives for recommendations. If you run a beauty salon, for example, you could offer the existing customer, and any friends they recommend you to, a 10% discount on the next treatment. Even the promise of custom printed tote bags is a cheap and effortless way to encourage reviews. But it is vital that you focus on the customer and their wants and needs. If the customer feels they are being bought, especially if you could have given them a better service, it’s not going to result in the best sort of attention. But we need word of mouth, just in the right ways. Word of mouth is hugely popular still, but in this day and age, it takes a different form. Use your website and social media platforms to engage and interact with customers, and take any feedback they leave on board. It’s so important to listen if people have taken the time to leave a review.
Being aware of risks
In business, there are hazards lurking everywhere, and it pays to be prepared for every eventuality. In terms of your reputation, it’s wise to think about potential risks and to make sure you’d be ready to respond if your reputation was under threat. If you got a negative review on social media, for example, and it became an overnight viral sensation, or you had to recall a product over safety fears, what would you do? Having a plan B can help you act quickly to reduce the impact and get your business back on track. Be prepared to accept accountability if you were at fault, issue an apology, and don’t underestimate the importance of communication.
Doing good in the world
When people see your logo or spot your brand name, what kind of associations do you want them to make? Business owners should strive to ensure customers make positive connections with brands. If you support local charities, you sell eco-friendly products, or you give back to your community, for example, this will enhance your image, and it may also make your business more appealing to buyers. If you’ve got two products in front of you, and you know that buying one will help people in need, you may be more likely to opt for that item rather than other. Think about how you can make a difference on a local, national or global scale and support causes that matter to you and your customers. If you’d like to donate a percentage of your profits to charity, for example, and you don’t know which organization to choose, ask your clients to offer suggestions or give your staff the chance to nominate a different charity every month. For more ideas, check out https://smallbiztrends.com/2013/10/creative-ways-businesses-can-give-back.html.
Have you ever been to a restaurant a few times, enjoyed every meal and then stopped going because you went once and the service was awful? Consistency is key because we tend to remember the most recent experience. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been ten times before, that negative experience will stick in your mind, and you’ll probably go somewhere different next time you fancy dining out.
If you’re a business owner, don’t underestimate the importance of your reputation. Hopefully, this guide will help you build a strong, reputable brand.