Every trade business is different. Whatever trade you are in, and whether you are looking to maintain your current lifestyle or if your looking to grow your business, it doesn’t have to cost the earth. Here we set out a few simple techniques that can bring in more business.
Six degrees of separation
If you do a great job, word spreads. Around seventy percent of trade business comes from referrals, so if you do a great job there is a very good chance your customer will remember you and recommend you to family and friends, who they will recommend you on to their network, and so on, resulting in a snowball effect of continual referrals.
Likewise, unprofessional behaviour or poor quality work is also never forgotten and can have a potentially huge impact on one of your main lifelines in the trade business.
So do not underestimate the value of your customer relationships as these alone could keep you in work and your business thriving, and at no extra cost to you.
You can also now advertise on referral websites and ask your customers to leave you reviews online. With your network of referrals being potentially wider than your immediate customer’s network, you have a real opportunity to attract customers which you would not find through word of mouth alone.
Leave a good impression
Which leads us on to how you work with your customers and the importance of leaving a good impression, not only in your workmanship but also in client service.
Leaving a good impression with clients could be argued to be just as important as delivering a good service, and the various customer interactions you experience as you work on a job all add up to an overall impression of who you are and what your business represents. For example, building a rapport quickly with a customer will mean that you could move on to first name terms, and how you work around a customer’s home or work premise, leaving it clean and tidy, will also leave a really good impression on the customer. The rule of thumb is not to assume anything about your next customer, as each customer will have their own expectations and you should be able to adapt to each client interaction you have.
Don’t forget your calling card
Marketing your trade business does not need to be expensive as we have seen with the power of referrals, but nonetheless marketing is essential. Your competitors advertise proactively and whatever the size or your trade of business, leaving business cards with customers is a must and a cheap marketing tool too.
Most trade businesses also advertise on work cars and vans, and if your trade involves an extended period based with the customer, putting up an advertising board should also be a serious consideration. For a relatively low marketing budget, you can make a large and visual impact to the general public to help build your brand name.
Making sure your customers remember you and sing your praises to potential customers in their network is the easiest and low cost way to grow your trade business.
We can help
Southside Accountants can support your business growth ambitions and can help you run your business effectively whilst fulfilling your legal and tax obligations as a sole trader or limited company. We strongly recommend you speak with a tax and accounting specialist like Southside Accountants, your local accountants in Wimbledon and London. Please contact us to see how we can help.
Written by Shaima Todd.