Small and medium-sized companies have always looked at their goliath competitors with budget envy. “If I only had that kind of money!” Research and development. New processes. Marketing. There are so many ways to grow with the right funds. So, how can a small business compete with these behemoths? Let’s take a look.
Keys to Beating Bigger Competitors
First, let’s cover some general strategies smaller businesses can use to beat their larger competitors. These include:
- Niche. Carve out your niche, in services, geography, and market segment.
- Build Relationships. Big businesses deal with what they call the ‘engagement gap’, that distance between them and their market. Smaller businesses don’t have that gap and can build solid, long-term relationships.
- Poke the Bear. Take on the competitors where they’re weakest. Don’t shy away from exploiting their weakness for a share of the market.
- Be Jack. Nimble and quick. Innovate. Smaller businesses can make changes, try new things, faster than the bigger companies. A technological shift in the industry or market can be a great opportunity for a smaller competitor.
- Get to know your customers. Send out a survey and a Net Promoter Score. You’ll be surprised at what you learn, and you’ll be able to use that information to make key improvements that will outmaneuver your competitors.
How to Use Customer Software for the Win
Your business likely depends, at least in part, on your software. From accounting to logistics, to sales and marketing, software is a key tool for any business. That is why it’s so important to make sure your software is working FOR your business and not FORCING you into ways of doing business that doesn’t make sense or don’t contribute to your success.
Considering the strategies mentioned above, here are some ways to leverage custom software to give your business an edge over your competitors:
- Communications: In an era where customers watch live updates of their delivery drivers, communications has never been more important, or more in demand. Custom software will keep the communications flowing with notifications and messaging, all automated and up-to-date.
- Operations: Businesses spend so much time tracking tasks, orders, and workflows. Managers spend their time crunching numbers, building fancy spreadsheets, and finding data. All of that can be cleaned up, simplified, and automated with the right operations software solution.
- Automation: There are many ways to automate your business with software. The key is to reduce or eliminate menial tasks so that your team can focus on doing what they do best. There are a lot of processes that larger enterprises automate through multi-million dollar systems, but a small business can leverage open-source solutions to get the same mileage at a much lower cost.
Custom software frees your business to meet your customers’ demands, to work within their expected workflows. That attention to customers, vendors and suppliers, and your own internal team will help your small business get a leg up on your larger competitors. It will also help your sales and marketing teams focus more on value than on price.
Potential Outcomes from Implementing Custom Software
Increase capacity. Boost sales. Grab market share. Create customer loyalty. Those are all likely outcomes from a good custom software rollout. We witnessed one client triple their capacity -- without adding employees -- after implementing phase one of a custom practice management solution. We're also rolling out a more complex workflow and process management function made possible with custom software. The existing solution was simplistic and did the job, but didn't break things out enough. Implementing a complete workflow management solution will keep the processes manageable, allowing the client to close out client files more quickly. As you can imagine, that’ll have a direct effect on cash flows as well.
If you’re inspired to explore the possibilities of using custom software to beat your larger competitors, then contact us to set up a time to discuss your business. We will help you understand how the right software will give your company the edge it needs.
Contact us today.