CustomerThe ultimate or the final aim of any business is to sell its product or service and make a profit. Therefore, to do this it is important to understand the needs and wants of your customer. And, to understand the needs of the customer you should know your customer.

You just cannot manufacture a product and force it on your customers – neither will you be able to sell your products nor make money. You have to first know your customers and identify their needs. Getting to know your customers is essential for any business or sales strategy, because if you do not know your customers you just cannot fulfil their desires.

It is for knowing their customers better that financial institutions and other regulated companies throughout the world have come with the KYC or the ‘Know Your Customer’ system. It is a system through which these institutions have come out with a method through which they are able to gather comprehensive information about their customer and the customer’s activities. This KYC process is now being employed by almost all the companies in the world to ascertain the bonafides and integrity of their customer. Know your customer policies are becoming increasingly important everywhere to prevent identity theft, financial fraud, money laundering, and terrorist financing.

The objective of KYC guidelines for financial institutions and banks is to prevent them from being used, intentionally or unintentionally, by criminal elements for criminal activities or money laundering activities. These procedures also enable banks to know and understand their customers, and their financial dealings better.

So, the question that now arises is how can you know your customer better?

We suggest a few tips on what you should know about your customers:

1. Who are the customers:
If you deal with customers directly, you should find out these details such as the customer’s name, sex, age, marital status, address, and occupation.

2. What do they do:
What is the nature of their business? What are their other interests? What is their financial status and if they have availed loans from any financial institution?

3. Why do they buy these products?
Do they buy these products for their own consumption or do they retail it to others?

4. When do they purchase these products?
When do they purchase these products – is it throughout the year or only during a particular season?

5. How do they buy these products?
How do they purchase the products – by cash, by cheque, or on a credit basis?

6. Where or from whom are they buying at present? Are they happy with the present supplier?

7. What are their expectations from you?

8. What is their opinion about you and your company?

Conduct your own market research that will help you know your customer better. It will also help you to gauge your customer’s likes, dislikes, and their future plans.

We offer a few tips that will help you know your customer better:

  • Demographic information: Gather demographic information about your customer and build up his profile.
  • Surveys: You can use surveys to acquire customer feedback about your product or service.
  • Market Research: Use market research companies to find out about the customer. Of course, such services are not free, and you may have to pay their charges.
  • Social networks: You can also get a lot of information about your customer through social network sites.
Entrepreneurial Learning

The ultimate or the final aim of any business is to sell its product or service and make a profit. Therefore, to do this it is important to understand the needs and wants of your customer. And, to understand the needs of the customer you should know your customer. You have to first know your customers and identify their needs. Getting to know your customers is essential for any business or sales strategy, because if you do not know your customers you just cannot fulfil their desires.

Image courtesy: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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