Let’s face it. Learning how to run a successful manufacturing business starts with thinking about the needs of your customers. After all, customers are what really determines whether your company is profitable or not, right? But finding the right cadence for creating excellent buyer experiences can be difficult if you aren’t sure where to start. Thankfully, our team of experts is here to help. Here are seven boxes your product should check in every buyer’s eyes. (Hint: They should all be a yes.)
1. Does the Product Meet the Customer’s Needs?
The most important question any manufacturer needs to ask when developing a product is if that item truly meets the customer’s needs. If it does, think about how this happens and the steps you can take to make that resolution even better. Sometimes this means taking extra steps to improve product design. In other instances, it might be developing an additional accessory or item to go along with the original offering. Put simply, people buy things they want and need. If your item doesn’t check off this box, you might not be on the path to manufacturing success.
2. Is There a Value Beyond Price?
If the product offers a value beyond price is another important factor to consider when you think of your buyer. After all, the lowest cost isn’t always best—but neither is the most expensive. Manufacturers who excel in this area do a great job of communicating that the item offers more value than just a monetary cost. For example, if the customer has a perceived value that a product can help them accomplish a task, provides durability, or is attached to a well-known quality brand, they’re more willing to make a purchase.
3. Does the Customer Service Team Meet Their Needs?
Your support team plays a huge role when it comes to providing a superior customer experience. While you hope no issues arise with an order or communication, they do, and it’s necessary to contact customers. If your customer service goes above and beyond, your customers are more prone to have a positive view of your company and product. If they do, they’ll likely come back as repeat buyers when it is time to make another purchase.
4. Does the Manufacturer Offer a Strong Digital Customer Experience?
These days, the physical aspect of purchasing an item isn’t everything. Today’s consumers and business-to-business clients want a digital experience, too. How best do you provide this?
Start with a strong website that offers the end user plenty of tips about how to use the item and answers
to frequently asked questions. Videos with behind-the-scenes information on how a product is made or where items are sourced are great ways to extend the customer experience online. The key is to offer strong content with a buyer focus. Then you can add a QR code or website address on the product packaging to bridge the digital and offline experiences. Think of it as giving a free class or presentation on the best way to use your product without having to be directly in front of the customer.
5. Does the Item Offer More Than the Competition?
The answer to this question should always be yes. If your product isn’t one of the best on the market,
it might be time to adjust.
But there are times when it is possible to have a mid-range design and still delight your customers.
How? Well, if you offer benefits around a mid-range product, you might have the perfect fit for their needs. Taking stock of where your item fits in the bigger landscape of your industry or niche is a good way to spot where you can make changes, and use marketing to convey the value of your product.
6. Is the Product Durable?
Part of offering value is creating a reputation for durability. If an item is considered one-time use, then this might not be a big deal. But if you offer something designed to last for years or decades? Then your company really needs to ensure that happens, or you risk your reputation. Having a solid quality control plan is usually the preferred way to ensure certain standards are met. You might opt to have an entire quality management team focus on ensuring each item that goes out with your logo on it is up to your organization’s high standards.
7. Has the Manufacturer Made It Clear What Happens After the Sale?
Finally, it is important to make it clear to the buyer what happens after the sale. This is especially crucial in a B2B marketplace, where your customer is likely to make a future purchase. Depending on your industry, this might mean having an email marketing list for specials and deals. Or it could involve having a sales team member follow up with a call to ensure satisfaction. Either way, make sure you have a plan for what happens after a purchase is made.
Conclusion: Focusing on Customer Satisfaction in Your Manufacturing Business
Focusing on customer satisfaction is a crucial part of growing your business for any manufacturing company. Those that do this often reach success, while those who ignore it are often left behind by competitors. With these seven tips in mind, now is the perfect time to decide how to improve your product and ensure each box gets a yes from your target market.