Less Is the New More: Keeping it Simple in Small Business
The success of brands like Google and Apple have proven that, when it comes to messaging, product offerings, and user experience, simple is better. Current research also backs up this idea: According to Siegle + Gale’s most recent Global Brand Simplicity Index, 75% of consumers are more likely to recommend a brand because it provides a simpler experience and communication. Simpler brands also inspire greater trust and loyalty than complex ones.
How can you make sure your small business’s branding, communications, and overall customer experience remain simple and straightforward? Here are 4 areas you can streamline.
1. Simplify Your Market
It’s tempting to try and keep your target audience broad so that you have more potential customers to go after. But trying to be all things to all people will only water down your message and complicate your business offerings (see point #2 below). Our recommendation: Go after a well-defined market segment and commit to it.
2. Simplify Your Offerings
Take a hard look at your product and service list. If you own a diner, do you really need 20 different kinds of sandwiches on the menu? If you own a salon, do you really need to offer 15 different mani + pedi packages at different price points? When in doubt, stick to the following mantra: Less is the new more. Keep in mind that the fewer products and services you provide, the more time and effort you can spend perfecting them.
3. Simplify Your Process
Whether they’re checking out from an online shopping cart, bringing in a product for exchange, or having something repaired, consumers hate to waste time on confusing, inefficient, or laborious processes. Wherever possible, make sure your customer-facing processes are as simple as possible. Fewer steps will lead to a faster resolution, which is good news for both customers and employees.
If your internal processes are also complex, you may want to consider making changes there as well to promote employee productivity and job satisfaction.
4. Simplify Your Communications
There’s no quicker way to turn a customer off than to overwhelm them with too many details, too many selling points, or inconsistent messaging. Once you’ve nailed down your brand’s position and story, stick to it. Your customers will retain your brand’s message and value much more easily if you always talk about your business in a simple, consistent way.
The Bottom Line
From a marketing and customer service perspective, more isn’t always better. Keep it simple, and you’ll keep your customers happy.