Before you create your online store and figure out what you’ll sell, what it will look like…
Before you get all excited about logos, colors, and products. You need to nail this one strategy before moving forward.
This will help determine how long it takes you to reach your goals and run a profitable business.
That is figuring out who the heck you’re talking to and why. Yep! That’s right you have to know your why and who! Or who and why, however, you want to say it and be very clear on your message.
Saying your store is for everybody is not enough, especially when you have so much competition. Being clear on who you help and why will set you apart in the “sea of same” and help you build more of a business you love and are excited about.
Let’s get clear
Who the heck are you creating your online shop for and what is that they need? What are they going to find in your store experience that they can’t find somewhere else?
I’ll give you an example…
Before I became an Apple fan I struggled for years with PC’s I had gone through like 5 it seemed. I started to expect that they would only last me 4 years at the most before I would need a new one.
I knew I wanted and needed a better performing computer for my needs and learned that Apple had great products that solved a problem for people like me.
Folks tired of forking out money for a PC they’ll have to replace sooner than expected. Oh and those over computer viruses.
They understood I wanted a computer that was modern and powerful, that let me create things on the fly. That fit into my lifestyle plus they had complementary accessories like an iPhone, iPad and other accessories that all worked well together.
One day when my PC started acting up I knew it was time to make the switch and I have never regretted the decision.
Apple had nailed a problem for me in my life, they understood I wanted a reliable computer that was powerful and could fit within my lifestyle.
*Note – that was years ago and PC’s have come a far way since those days. I think they are great computers but your girl is a Mac girl. No regrets.
Apple has a great understanding of their audience and positions itself very well. You want to be the X to your audience not the general store for everybody.
Who is your Ideal Customer
What do they struggle with and how do you plan to help them get to their solution?
Maybe your store sells stylish jewelry for those with a certain type of allergy. Or you sell planners to people who love minimal and stylish layouts that look great in their Louis Vuitton agendas.
Each of those customers has a specific need or lifestyle preference that caters to their senses.
Some questions you can consider knowing are:
- What does their life look like right now?
- Where are they spending their time online?
- What magazine or articles are they reading? Or Podcasts or videos they frequently use.
- How do they prefer to shop? Is it online when they’ve finally laid their kids down to sleep?
- Do they fit in time for working out?
Now all these questions may not apply but will give you a better understanding of their lives and behaviors. If you had as much information about us as Facebook you’ll know everything about your customers. The cool part is you don’t have to be that stalkerish just enough to be profitable.
The Benefits of Knowing Your Ideal Customer
When your ideal customer feels like you understand them clearly and that you are speaking directly to them. It will be a game-changer for your business!
It is also easier to market to people you know a lot about.
You can then easily buy products that they are interested in that will help them and also boost your sales.
By knowing where they hang out you can then be sure to show up there with your offer. This is also called positioning your self as an expert.
Instead of showing up in a pond where everyone is fishing you can show up in a pond where you can fish successfully.
What happened when I got specific about who I was serving?
Storytime ok when I first started my business years ago I was like everyone else. My message was “I do branding and web design for female entrepreneurs”. Though that seemed targetted it wasn’t, there are a ton of female entrepreneurs in lots of industries. For example:
That was simply too board especially for a market that was constantly growing. From a client’s perspective, it was hard to tell the difference between myself and other designers. So how was a client suppose to choose? By features and price which is not my ideal way to stand out.
It wasn’t until I got specific that things shifted. I became known for my expertise and it was easier for others to refer me. That was my preferred way to stand out.
So before you decide to create an online experience be sure you are clear on who you are serving. If you’re not, spend more time getting clear, it will help you make better decisions. Plus save you a ton of time and some headaches.
It’s so important that its one of the first conversation pieces I have will all new clients before we proceed any further.
I’m curious, who is your ideal customer and how do you help them?