Research shows that 90% of businesses do not know what their customers want. In a world burdened with financial difficulties, American stores need to shape up. According to a four-year study conducted by the market intelligence firm, BIGresearch, most customers will put value and service ahead of price. That’s right. Even though your store may be just a tad more expensive than the one next door, if yours provides quality assistance for consumers, they will choose you over the lower-priced competition.

“When researchers asked customers how far they’d be willing to drive for excellent service, 80 percent said they’d travel four or more miles, and nearly half said they would drive ten miles or more for the right combination of price, quality and customer service,” said Scott Gross, author of When Customers Talk.

In addition, Jaynie L. Smith, CEO of Smart Advantage, Inc. and author of Relevant Selling, added that “the business who becomes relevant by addressing what customers really value at any given time will be the first ones out of the recession.”

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