How to Use Your Customers to Boost Your Bottom Line

istock_000006304060xsmallYou have a great product or service. You’ve taken it to market and it’s doing well. But could it being doing better? Are there steps towards growth that you haven’t yet thought of?

Maybe it’s time to talk to your customers.

They are the people that experience your business firsthand. They’re (mostly) objective and see things from the outside – they have a perspective that you can’t have, no matter how much you think you can.

Here are a few things that you can learn from your customers:

1. The state of your customer service
The impression you leave on a customer can help (or haunt) your business for the rest of its existence. In this day and age of sharing experience and reviews online, a bad customer experience can do a lot to damage your earning potential.

2. How your product is being used
People use things in creative ways. It’s very possible that your customers don’t use your product for what you intended – but that doesn’t mean it’s wrong. It could actually open you up to a completely new market that you didn’t even know existed!

3. Product quality
It’s possible that there’s a flaw in your product that you don’t know about. Just like bad customer service, a bad product will hurt your reputation. Recently I bought an inexpensive tablet computer. It took more than two months to arrive and before I even charged it once, the charger burnt out. You can bet I’ve left some negative reviews and have warned many people never to buy from that particular company.

4. New product ideas
There might be variations on your current product OR related products that you haven’t considered but that there really is a market for. When your customers make a recommendation or a request, consider whether it’s something that a lot of other people might also be looking for.

It’s amazing what you can learn when you take the time to stop and listen to your customers. What they have to say just might blow you away!

Have you learned anything surprising from your customers? Tell us in the comments!