Quick Ways to Reassess Your Target Market
Even if you only opened your business a few months ago, it’s important to continually reassess your target market. This is because markets are always changing, and knowing where your business fits can help you grow. Below is a list of questions whose answers may help reveal new insights about your target market.1
Many questions are about your clientele, and it can be beneficial to approach them directly. Chat with your customers casually when they’re in your store, observe their behavior or send out a survey online. The goal is to gain a deeper understanding about what drives patrons to your store. A big added bonus may come by discovering your target audience has many new members.
• When is my business most active?
There may be some hidden nuances to the increases in your business traffic you can use to boost profitability. A good place to start is identifying your busiest time of the day, week or month. Consider why that particular time is busier than others and think of ways to maximize the moments when your patrons are purchasing. Flash sales and discounts on complementary purchases can help you move more inventory and increase total sales.
• Who frequents my business?
Try to identify all of the patrons that frequent your business, especially the ones that fall outside your target. Gaining new and different customers can tip you off to some important insights such as: 1. The neighborhood demographics are changing, 2. Your products appeal to a larger audience than you imagined, or 3. Your business provides a more appealing experience than nearby competitors.
• Why do they shop at my business?
From customer service to convenience and product selection, there are dozens of reasons why your clientele prefers to shop at your business. Ask your customers what they like and take note of their responses. If it’s convenience that brings them back, find out if there are any other products or services you can offer to make your business even more fulfilling. If they enjoy your customer service, consider asking if there are ways you can make their shopping experience more convenient.
• What technology are they using?
If your patrons are carrying smartphones, tablets or laptops, you know they are spending quite a bit of time online. They also likely have a need to be connected to the internet at various parts of their day. Online advertising may be something to consider to reach tech-savvy customers, and offering a free wireless internet connection may make your business more attractive. Don’t overlook social media, either. Many small businesses use Facebook and Twitter to connect with current customers and attract new ones.
The most successful businesses are often the ones that can stay close to their clientele, especially as it changes. A big part of that is understanding who they are and how your business fits in with their routine. That starts with asking questions like the ones outlined above. The next step is augmenting your business with offerings that cater to your customers’ lifestyles. The goal is synergy with your target market and a close eye on emerging trends that can help boost profitability and stability.
1 Euromonitor International. “Consumer Lifestyles in Canada.” Passport. November 2012.