Value addition is the future for large and small-scale businesses. The Corporate Finance Institute (CFI) describes value addition as enhancing the value of something above its initial value. Value addition can be in the product/service, in the packaging, the delivery or in the after-sale service. Let’s say you have the product or service ready, and you need value addition strategies to boost the customer experience and give you an edge in the market. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
- After sale care
Bridal wear shops are opening up on every street in the city. Give your customers a different experience by offering after the wedding laundry service for the gown. Which bride wouldn’t want to store a clean wedding dress?
- Stylist on call
Have a stylist in your store to assist customers who don’t know what they are looking for. A stylist is not the average sales person we find in a boutique; a stylist understands fashion and probably has experience or professional training in fashion styling. That way, you can influence any customer who wants to walk out because he/she didn’t find something suitable. If your store is online, indicate you have a stylist available to chat with clients.
- Free make-up session
Treat your walk-in clients to a revolutionary make-up session as they make a purchase. Don’t Just have the samples on display for customers to try them on at will; have a professional assist in the make-up application process. The interaction between your staff and customers will differentiate your store from others that operate like cosmetics supermarkets.
- Free consultation
Attract new and potential customers by hiring a dermatologist to join your staff. If your store cannot take in more staff, have this expert come in as a freelancer on specific days, and inform your clients about it while marketing your brand. It could create very good social media buzz for your cosmetics shop.
- Pack related products together
For example, if you manufacture hair weaves, add a detangler or sheen in the package; if you manufacture lipstick, package it with a lip liner instead of selling these separately. Retailers too can make practical packages. For instance, if you sell ladies’ jeans, match them with blouses and have a single price for such packages.
- Introduce levels of service
Introduce a reward or loyalty program that recognises loyal customers. For instance, start a Gold, Silver and Bronze card reward system for your salon, where a Gold Card holder enjoys a free massage every month. Alternatively, create a lounge in your spa and treat loyal customers to a cold or hot drink. There is so much you can do even when running a small business in a city estate. For instance, treat a loyal customer to a free pedicure every time she gets her hair done in your salon. Customers should know about these levels of service, and how to gain benefits in the higher level.
- Follow-up program for new customers as they transition to your products
Remarketing or retargeting is the future of marketing. Online, you can have a subscription form. On land, you can request customers for their phone numbers or email addresses. Whether you interact with existing customers, new or prospective clients, create a communication channel. Do not gather contact information without asking the customer first. If you send messages and emails just to sell, the customer will get bored and want out of your mailing list. However, if the communication is engaging, and you are interested in how the customer is doing, a lasting relationship will develop. For example, you could do a customer survey or call in a few customers for a group survey over a cup of tea.
- Free delivery
When buying online, customers want to know your delivery process. If the overall cost of purchase, including delivery, is more expensive than visiting a local store, you may lose clients. However, if you add the cost of delivery to the cost of the item, and indicate your free shipping/delivery terms clearly, you might win more customers. They just need to order, stay at home, and wait. Who would hate that?
- Free installation
This is one of the traditional after sale services offered by various companies around the world. If your business sells appliances such as spa equipment, hire an expert to install these for your customers. If you sell hair extensions and weaves, have a hair stylist on call to assist your customers.
- Offer insider data to resellers
Whether you are a clothing wholesaler, a hair accessories distributor or a spa equipment store owner, there’s always customer data accumulated over time. For example, if you sell mitumba as a wholesaler, you know which items are popular with retailers. If you sell cosmetics, you know which brands are popular.Gather such information and offer advice to resellers who buy from you. There will be a significant difference between you and another wholesaler who is only interested in selling and not in the growth of resellers’ businesses. Remember, when resellers grow, your business grows too.
These are a few value addition ideas to boost your business and increase your profit.