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How to make your business’s first impressions count

How to make your business’s first impressions count
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How to make your business’s first impressions count
Simon Chapman - The Alternative Board by Simon Chapman - The Alternative Board
Managing Director (Mid and North Kent) - The Alternative Board

Whether you are new to business or an established business, have you recently had a look at how you are viewed from the point of view of a prospective customer, current customer or even potential business partner? CapitalSpace   business development expert,  Simon Chapman, explains how important first impressions can be.

The jewellery shop example  

It can be almost guaranteed that most of the jewellery shops you come across will have a stunning display with products sparkling clean, easy to find and view.  The purpose of this is to draw you into the shop where, in most cases, you will be presented with another immaculate setup to entice you to purchase from that retailer, as opposed to a competitor. 

So, are there lessons that your business can take from the Jewellery shop analogy? What is your shop front?  Clearly, depending on the type of business you run your ‘shop front’ can take many different forms. 

Websites: your shop front  

Nowadays, prospective customers’ first port of call might involve looking at your website; from just a few seconds of navigating around your site they will cast an opinion as to whether they want to do business with you or not. Is your website up to date and fit for purpose, are there case studies, reviews etc.?  If they then decide to progress further, what is the next stage and how is that experience presented to them?  

The next stage of the customer experience

You can have the best website in the world, but if the next step of your customers’ journey isn’t as welcoming, efficient and professional, you will undermine all the work you have put into making your shop window stand out from the crowd and entice visitors. 

  • How is your main switch board line answered?

Is it answered in a polite and professional manner? 

Could your gatekeeper be turning away potential customers or business partners before finding out enough facts about their reason for calling? 

  • If you run a small business and are contactable usually via a mobile phone :

Is your voicemail message easy to understand?

Does it give the caller the information you require them to leave and then how and when you will contact them back? 

  • Is the outside of your unit or office environment clean, modern and welcoming ?

Does it need a new sign, a lick of paint or a major overhaul? 

  • Your reception area:

Are guests welcomed appropriately, offered a drink with a chair to sit on? 

What are the procedures when your receptionist is away from the desk? 

  • If you use LinkedIn, Facebook or another form of social media :

Is it updated regularly and is the content relevant? 

Of course, there are various firms that you could employ to give you an overview of your business and how they are treated as a potential customer.  But why not, in the first instance, just take some time out to write down all of your ‘shop fronts’ and review them?  You could get another point of view by engaging with your staff, close family or friends. 

Whatever your own particular ‘shop front’ is, the majority of business owners would agree: first impressions really do count!  

To find out how Capital Space business premises could benefit your growing business, call 0800 107 3667

MEET THE EXPERT

Simon Chapman – Managing Director, The Alternative Board (Mid and North Kent) Simon’s passion for helping the owners of small- and medium-sized businesses succeed led him to become the local owner for The Alternative Board (TAB) in Mid and North Kent.  Having held senior positions within the Fund Management and Banking Industries, Simon has wide expertise in devising and implementing strategies with business owners and their management teams. It is this insight and knowledge gained over the past 20 years that looks to share amongst forward thinking business owners to help them strive.