Monday, 23 July 2018

Information and commentary for the small business banking industry

The 2017 business year – help your small business customers look ahead

02 Dec

Maintaining that competitive advantage

There’s so much competition among small businesses in the U.S. that it’s essential for business owners to remain up to date with what’s happening in their industry, so that they can maintain and improve their competitive advantage, as well as boosting their brand in the marketplace.

Standing out from the competition should be a priority for all small business owners. Those that rest on their laurels will face a decline in profits come 2017. And although small business owners are – understandably – getting ready for the Christmas rush and one of the most profitable times of the year, it’s also important for them to look ahead to 2017 and get strategies in place to maintain their competitive advantage.

Things to watch out for in 2017

If your bank’s small business advisors are discussing new year strategies with their customers, it’s a good idea to keep the following in mind for 2017:

  • Mobile technology. Everyone uses a smartphone these days, for browsing the internet just as often as making calls or sending texts. So it’s vital that business websites are optimized for mobile technology and that they have a mobile-centric strategy in place. Not only that, but if your bank offers mobile payment solutions, talk to your small business customers – especially the ones that run a service-based business – about adding that payment option. Not only are people using their phones to browse the internet, they’re also using them as wallets to make the most of mobile payment options.
  • Data-driven marketing. Setting up a professional sales system and customer database is essential. In terms of 2017 small-business trends, data is a big one. For small business marketers, data is a great way to remain competitive as it can be used to personalize product offerings, discover untapped areas of opportunity, identify critical consumer touchpoints, improve customer support, and more
  • The big changes in 2016 and the impact they’ll have on small business in 2017. And by this we mean Brexit and President-elect Donald Trump. There’s a lot of analysis going on in the U.S. about what impact these two events are likely to have on small business, and it’s worth tapping into some of this knowledge and expertise.
  • Discuss with your small business customers what payment options they’re offering their clients. We mentioned mobile payments above, but it’s also important for business owners to make sure they’re offering a range of options. Credit and debit cards are essential for retail-based businesses, but service-based and B2B businesses should consider online payment solutions as well. The easier businesses can make it for their customers to pay them, the more likely they are to get paid on time.

The small business landscape in the U.S. is constantly evolving. Small business owners should have their eye on the future, so that they can remain competitive and relevant as 2017 begins, a year that’s likely to bring about many changes for small businesses.

Here at TSBC, we can offer you great content around the benefits of online, mobile and credit card payment solutions. Contact us on sales@tsbc.com to find out how we can help you.

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