Small Business Trends for 2016
As the New Year is upon us and 2016 is well under way, we take a look at some of the predicted small business trends for the coming year and how you can take advantage of them within your sports business, pet business, or health and fitness club.
More and more businesses are adapting to become mobile and tablet friendly as people use their devices more and the use of desktops decreases. Making sure any email marketing or websites are adaptable to mobile therefore becomes increasingly important. Customers should be able to book appointments or access information from any device they use to make it as easy for them as possible to interact with your business.
Pop ups have been increasing in popularity with both small and big businesses over recent years. This allows your business to service a new area and increase brand awareness without the huge costs of opening a new site. This is also a good way to dip your toe in the water of opening another site and monitoring the response without having to commit long term money, property and staff wise.
Increased Customer Expectation
Customers are getting more and more savvy and clued up on their rights. Customers are expecting more not only from the big players but the independent local business. Therefore, it pays to make sure your customer experience is as good as it can be and you have clear procedures to avoid complaints.
The phrase customers service is slowly being phased out and customer experience is beginning to take over. This is because now it is all about the experience the customer receives from before they even have any direct contact with the business such as looking at a website to after they have purchased or used their service. It is important to focus on this area, mapping out customer journeys and ensuring everything is as smooth and user friendly as possible. The best marketing for any business is word of mouth and recommendation especially for small businesses and if a customer has an excellent experience with a business they are more likely to tell their friends and recommend them.
New Staff Recruitment
Recruiting new members of staff is likely to get increasingly difficult especially for skilled positions as unemployment rates fall and job openings increase as larger companies expand. This means increased recruitment costs and longer periods to fill positions. Therefore, it is important to focus on staff retention making sure they are happy and less likely to leave the company and ensure you factor in these extra costs to any business development plans.
As always not all of these trends will affect every business in every area but it is important to be aware and prepare to act accordingly should it be beneficial to your small business.