It seems these days there are sweet, little bakeries popping up on every corner across the country. They all offer something unique and delectable. But what happens when your ‘unique’ bakery loses its luster because there is suddenly an influx of them and customers are inundated with several options to choose from to satisfy their sweet tooth?
It is estimated that there are some 2,800 bakeries currently registered in the U.S., with this number growing significantly each year. Business owners have to work hard not just whipping up that delicious homemade frosting, but in keeping their product relevant. Within this niche, store owners are no longer able to just focus on their passion for baked goods, but now must also focus so much time and attention on marketing and brand recognition in an effort to maintain earnings revenue.
There are several ways boutique bakeries stand out from the pack. One successful way is by using packaging that is a cut above the rest. (Similar to judging a book by its cover which, face it, we all do.) Packaging in no way can determine the quality of what is inside, but it gives business owners a better shot at consumers trying them out the first time. Great packaging design will allow the bakery owner to give a proverbial cover page to their work. When we see things in attractive packaging it will naturally peak our interests more than something that appears generic or dull.
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Are you a believer that you have to make a sale in a brick and mortar store in order to begin to bring about returns from your customers? Can you envision being able to achieve this depth of value with conversions in your e-commerce store?
We want to inspire you to be cognizant of what it takes to acquire and maintain meaningful perceptions in the minds of your customers. Whether a customer makes an e-commerce conversion or makes a point-of-sale purchase in your local store, they can and should have the same brand experience; and this is a readily, achievable goal.
Harnessing the power of start-up entrepreneurs is already a strategic financial maneuver of venture capitalists. Everyday, investors provide early-stage seed money to emerging companies in exchange for equity. That early stake in the incubator company will pay off in huge returns if/when the product or service skyrockets. In the news recently, Target Corporation shared how it has set apart one of its San Francisco stores to act as an “Open House” concept store to tap into the emerging smart products that are developed in the surrounding Silicon Valley technological think tank.
The largest giants of the internet age – Apple, Facebook, Amazon, and Google – have grown at a rate the world has not seen before. Considering these companies are so huge, you may not realize that they once started small and had many failures in the beginning. Here are some lessons small to medium-sized businesses can learn from the giants.
1) Embrace Failure
Eventually, every business is going to fail at something. If it doesn’t, it usually means the business isn’t taking risks. Focus on what your business has done the best at. When something fails, ask your team: 1) what worked effectively?; 2) what have we learned?; and 3) what can we change? Google has a huge graveyard of product failures, such as Google Notebook, Google Wave, and Jaiku. And they turned these failures in
to lessons – and used it to get to where they are now.
2) Employee Satisfaction
When it comes to where your business focus should be, you should always begin with your employees. Not the customer, you ask? Yes, of course also the customer – but the customer is happy if their interaction with your employees is a happy one – so start with your employees. Look at companies like Google, who have entire campuses built to ensure their employees are happy and thriving. This creates positive interactions with customers and endless innovation and creativity.
Most businesses operate under the belief that in order to corner the market and attract a loyal customer base, a website and social media accounts are pretty much mandatory. However, many retailers are now finding that this is simply not enough anymore.
What do we know?
Online business is booming! Business Insider reports “This holiday season indicated that there’s never been a better time to be a consumer. The rise of online and mobile shopping has given consumers more choice, flexibility, and often better service, and retailers are shifting their strategies to keep up.”
As more and more consumers are taking to their smartphones and tablets to shop, small retailers find themselves once again heeding the ever-changing call to keep up with their habits.
How does it affect me?
As customers visit your website on their mobile devices, challenges could arise involving the clarity and functionality of your site, even if it is responsive, making the shopping experience frustrating for the consumer. To alleviate these problems, the demand heightens for a more mobile friendly shopping experience.