For a customer focused business, gaining insights into the behaviour and preferences of customers can bring big rewards. This is the second post in our ‘getting to know your customers’ series for small businesses.
You may not have realised it, but your accounting software can provide valuable customer insights that could help your business improve profits. Consider the value you gain from loyal customers who return to your store repeatedly and tell others about your product or service.
Part 2: The value in your top customers
Your most loyal customers can be critical to your business success. Many businesses report that around 20% of their customers make up around 80% of their sales – that’s a huge slice and certainly a good reason to keep your best customers happy.
Top customers are those that frequent your business and spend the most money.There are a number of useful accounting software reports that can help you identify top customers examples include a summary of sales by customer and a sales by customer detail report.
A Sales by Customer Summary report can show you the level of sales to each of your customers, while a Sales by Customer Detail report will show all items recorded on invoices or receipts. You can make various adjustments to the reports to show more interesting information.
One of the more recent additions the Reckon Accounts business range (previously known as QuickBooks) is the customer snapshot tool. The customer snapshot provides businesses with a graphical analysis of their individual customer’s activity on a single screen, making the assessment of customer behaviour a lot easier.
Making the most of insights you uncover
If you’re looking to improve your base of loyal customers, consider what you are getting right with your repeat customers to date and then look at what tactics will broaden this powerful base.
Finding ways to build a personal connection with your customers will be most effective as your business will become more meaningful to your customers and allow you to create a stronger bond. Your business size will determine what’s right for you as there are hundreds of ways to engage with customers and some require greater resources than others. Something as simple as writing a personal email to a customer following up after a sale or replying to an enquiry can be very effective; use your accounting software to make notes about customers that will help you recall their preferences and make them feel noticed whenever you make contact.
Do you use your accounting software to analyse customer trends?
Read part one of our series on ‘getting to know your customers’ blog series. Our next post will look at how you can delve more deeply into your data to gain customer insights.
Please note the information contained in this article is intended to be general in nature. You should seek professional advice regarding individual circumstances.