With every New Year that comes about, it gives us all the opportunity to reflect on the year that has gone and look forward to the year that lies ahead. For all businesses, this gives you the chance to look for ways to make improvements: whether that’s to product and service offering, customer satisfaction or employee retention rates. So, essentially, 2021 should be like any other year, except that we have all been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. Many industries, such as tourism and high-street stores, have been very badly affected while other industries have flourished, such as online retailers. Other industries have simply managed to weather the storm. But whatever the situation of your business right now, even during a devastating pandemic, you can still aim to improve your business in 2021. Here are a few ways of doing just that:
Improve customer experience
There is only one place to begin, and this is by improving the experience you provide your customers. Ensure 2021 is a better year than last year for your business by looking for one way to enhance the current products or services you provide. This could be anything from offering customers a discount for signing up to your newsletter, a free informational download or simply sending an automated response when you cannot respond to your emails straight away.
Encourage employee training
One of the best ways to improve your business is by improving your employees. Encourage them to take a training course to advance their skills. Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is known to boost the quality and efficiency of an individual’s work, but it also helps to increase employee retention rates as well. This will result in happier customers or clients, and lower costs for the business by keeping recruitment costs to a minimum
Adapt your approach to marketing
If you remain stagnant in the business world and offer the same products or services that you have always done, then you are going to be left behind by the competition. This is why you need to take the time to adapt your marketing strategy so that it is suitable for current trends and general business environment, which is particularly important in 2021 after the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. For example, more and more customers and clients will be interacting with your business online this year so you may want to review the user experience on your website, and on your telephone and email systems. Do you, for example, use an Interactive Voice Recording (IVR) system that makes customers stay on the line or one that simply makes them put the phone down, resulting in lost business or dissatisfied customers?
Learn from your mistakes
Your business will be held back if you do not learn from the mistakes you have made. Whenever something goes wrong, you shouldn’t punish yourself or try to blame someone else or ignore the problem. Instead learn a lesson from what has happened and use that information to avoid problems in the future. You should see every failure as an opportunity. there are many powerful lessons you can learn from failures and many of those lessons learned come from successful business leaders.
Set up a referral program
Your existing customer base is your most powerful marketing tool. Many business owners make the mistake of only concentrating on securing new customers, rather than their existing clients. It’s important to build up loyal relationships, and this can include setting up a referral program whereby you give current customers an incentive for bringing new custom to you. It’s one of the easiest and most effective ways of drumming up new business.
Improve your collaboration efforts
Effective collaboration and communication are imperative for a business to be successful in 2021. Make sure you have all of the right tools in place so that your team can collaborate efficiently and achieve more. We’ve all learnt to spend more time in remote meetings this past year and that way of working may become a more established feature of some businesses so don’t let lack of technology, or lack of training in the technology, hold your business back.