Ten things you really need to know about your customers.

Most businesses recognise the importance of having the right information, but with so much data available, it is all too easy to become overloaded. From our experience of working with clients of all types and sizes, here are ten things we believe businesses really need to know about their customers:

  1. Why do they buy from us – what is it about us or our offers that fits their particular needs?
  2. What are their other options?
  3. We know what they want now, but what about the future?
  4. Which of them are of most interest to our competitors?
  5. What do we have to do to retain existing business – will continuous improvement be enough or do we need to innovate?
  6. What do they really think of us and are we measuring our performance on their criteria or ours?
  7. How much of their business are we getting and how much could we win?
  8. Are our ‘best’ customers generating real profit or is servicing their demands bleeding us dry?
  9. How do we spot really good customers and where can we find more?
  10. What happens if the person who deals with us leaves?

These ten things are not easily acquired and will need as much sound judgment as factual data. Nevertheless, keeping good profitable customers is worth thinking hard about.