Small business owners focus on engaging customers to generate growth

Customer satisfaction is essential to small business success.

To grow their companies, many small business owners are trying to actively engage their customers. A survey by Constant Contact found that local merchants are using a range of channels and tools to connect with their target audience.

Every business, regardless of size, should focus on improving its customer experience strategies, as this can improve revenue and customer retention, as well as lead to more referrals. The survey showed that most small business owners were using a multichannel approach to engage existing customers. Email, websites, social media and blogs were all common sources of interactions with customers that helped developing companies keep their audience informed and engaged.

"Email consistently ranks high as an effective marketing tool for small businesses," said Joel Hughes, senior vice president at Constant Contact. "And it's interesting to see how small businesses are now successfully integrating it with emerging social platforms to strengthen customer engagement."

The ability to maintain an open dialog with customers is vital to many small businesses. The survey notes that 82 percent of developing companies receive most of their new business through referrals. This makes customer satisfaction essential to continued success and requires a strong commitment to building an effective customer experience management (CEM) strategy.

A separate study by MyBuys found that regular interactions with customers can help drive revenue. The report showed that 40 percent of respondents stated they buy more from retailers who send relevant offers, and more than half (55 percent) said that they wanted to received more personalized recommendations based on past purchases. Taking the time to develop procedures that optimize communications will help firms improve repeat sales and customer satisfaction.

Building Customers for LifeSM is a business philosophy from Omega Management Group Corp. that enhances the value and competitiveness of any organization. Understanding the importance of a proactive CEM strategy enables firms to build company cultures that place the customer first, which allows them to drive profitable growth and improve products and services.