How Many Customers Do You Need?

Supermarket TrolleyFor your business to be successful how many customers do you need?

Should you be looking to build a vast following of customers or look for those that will be more loyal and therefore spend more of their money on your products?

Let’s examine for a moment a small fruit and vegetable shop. Many of the customers are using it for convenience simply when they don’t have time to go to the supermarket. Such a business requires lots of people to buy small amounts of produce and very rarely at that. Maybe the average customer only buys once or twice a month.

However what if that business could become a better retailer of fruit and vegetables? How? By offering better quality than the supermarket, better advice when customers purchase and possibly different varieties of produce that supermarkets would not handle due to scale (small can be good).

The shop would need to look different from the average and to have it re-fitted to reflect a more niche market would be essential. It must be different from the bland look of the rivals.

This fruit and veg store could now build a more loyal customer following and have potentially less customers but who will spend more on each visit and call in to buy more often.

This makes a business more profitable and less at risk from being closed down by the larger supermarket. In this example our fruit and veg shop owner found that by making his business slightly different from his larger competitors he could now develop customers who wanted to shop with him not just occasionally but regularly and with a a degree of loyalty to the business. He became first choice not second best.

Image: Salvatore Vuono /


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