First impressions matter a lot, especially in business. By the first impression, we mean the impression people have when they first contact your business, whether at your physical store or online. Your business’s first impression can make or break your business, setting the tone for potential business relationships and future success. Paying attention to even the smallest details can make a huge difference because customers have a lot of choices, and you want them to choose you over your competition. Here are the best ways to create a great first impression that helps you attract and retain customers or clients.
Create a Good Environment
Businesses with clients and customers visiting their premises regularly can benefit from creating a safe, welcoming atmosphere inside and outside the building. Starting with the outside, you should ensure your landscaping is done well as this is one of the first things people will see as they approach your building.
The second thing to do is ensure you have enough parking spaces and that the parking lot is in good shape. No one wants to drive and park in uneven, cracked parking lots. Businesses can consider various parking lot options including asphalt, gravel, and concrete. You can get in touch with companies providing commercial parking lot paving services in your area to get the paved parking lot for your business.
Create a Welcoming Office
Once people walk through your doors, they will typically enter the reception area or lobby. You want to ensure that this area is clean and decorated so it feels welcoming. It should tell people what they can expect when they decide to do business with you.
Your receptionist is typically the first person clients and customers will meet. Therefore, they have to be well-trained and well-versed in communicating with different types of customers. They should also be friends, knowledgeable about the business and its products or services, and equipped to handle unhappy customers.
Providing a comfortable sitting area is also a good idea if your customers or clients have to wait for someone or something.
Have a Professional and User-friendly Website
Another important point of first contact is your business website. Most customers start their searches for information, products, and services online. A website is much more than an informational and marketing tool as it can also influence how customers see your business. It can also inspire confidence or leave your business looking unprofessional and as if it does not care about its online image.
Successful businesses understand this, which is why they hire the best web designers and developers to create professional, beautiful, functional and user-friendly websites. Apart from a good design and user-friendliness, the business website should also have all the information a customer may need to know about the business.
If you don’t know whether your business is creating a good first impression, you can hire website testers to go through the website as new customers would. They will test everything and tell you whether your website created a great first impression and provides a great user experience.
Provide Friendly Customer Service
Calling and emailing are also the first points of contact for many customers. They may write or call to inquire about a product or services or to find more information about the business. No one wants to interact with an apathetic, rude, or incompetent customer service agent, and thus they may leave and never come back.
Businesses should provide proper training to ensure everyone who gets in touch with the business through these mediums or in other ways has the best experience possible.
Leverage the Power of Social Media
Social media provides businesses with the opportunity to interact with existing and potential customers. Talking about your products, services, business, and topics that interest your audience are all great, but businesses should also endeavor to create authentic relationships with their audiences.
People prefer buying from other people rather than other brands and this is why taking your followers behind the scenes, celebrating employees and showing them the human side of the business can work well for businesses.
Participate in Local Business Awards
Participating in and winning business awards can create a great first impression. Winning such awards helps you stand out from your competition while also showing potential customers that you are the best option for them. Doing so also helps improve your business reputation and to receive the recognition you and your team deserve.
In the current business environment, businesses cannot risk their customers picking a competitor over them. This is one of the reasons why creating a great first impression is so important. There are numerous ways to do so, and businesses would do well to leverage as many of them as possible.