Understanding Slow Business: Why Your Product is Failing

by J.B. Maverick

3 min read

Approximately 40% of all new products introduced to consumers fail within the first three years on the market. For this reason, identifying the most common causes of failure and avoiding them at all costs proves extremely important for your business. For the most part, a product fails due to incorrect customer presentation, though other reasons exist for product demise. These tips help you identify and elude merchandise shortcomings, helping to set you on a path for success.

Figuring Out a Flawed Product

Even the best-researched products fail, so before placing items on the shelves, consider your customer’s needs. Ask yourself if better options already exist or if consumers truly want the item at hand. You should also consider your target market, looking at items this group of individuals purchases and considering how your product stacks up against the competition. Make sure the product has been tested thoroughly before putting it up for sale. Any flaws in the design could turn customers off from your brand for good. Take care of marketing research before you launch your merchandise to avoid these potentially costly pitfalls.Place already stocked products in a prominent location within your retail space when it doesn’t move as quickly as it should, and add the item to your sales paper to see if it gains traction with customers. If that doesn’t work, share the item on social media or make a video explaining the product’s features and benefits. Consider offering the product at a slightly discounted price to help push it along.

Identify Available Innovations

Companies that identify necessary modifications and opportunities tend to be the ones that keep customers most satisfied as times inevitably change. Buyers always look for the biggest and best, so if you place an inferior product on the market, you can typically expect failure. To avoid this situation, put your research and development team to work discovering new ways of doing things and be on the lookout for new products customers enjoy. Attend industry trade shows and talk with distributors and vendors to suss out which types of products move the best and why, then strive for perfection in every product you sell. Also, be open to taking suggestions from customers on products they would like to see in your store, replacing slower moving items with things you know your base desires. Even with the perfect product, timing remains critical. Introduce top-of-the line products immediately to ensure the best response from customers, and rotate your stock to ensure older merchandise get pushed out of sight and mind.

Considering Customer Service

Businesses who achieve the highest levels of success tend to know a thing or two about customer loyalty. According to research on customer satisfaction, approximately 70 percent of shoppers stop patronizing frequently used businesses if they have a bad experience. Of that 70%, 80% of customers said they were very happy or at least satisfied with the level of service they had received up until that moment. The attitude of employees and management plays a huge role in that overall satisfaction level. If your company seems on a path of self-destruction, take a good look at current employee and management team morale. Hold training sessions on customer service, developing a company mission statement that helps remind your salespeople to make good impression and truly address customers’ needs. To ensure excellent customer service, implement a customer service survey to find which areas you need to work on and take suggestions for ways to improve. Respond to all complaints as quickly as possible, and finally, get to know your customers. Think of your customers in the long term because happy customers give referrals and help increase your business. Creating a successful business requires lots of planning and preparation on the part of any business owner. Make sure your products and services match the needs of the customer in order to avoid costly product failures, and make sure your customers leave happy every time they shop.

References & Resources

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