What new businesses can learn from their competitors
We in the Albert O’Connor & Co Accountants office understand that it takes little more than a laptop and a couple of social media pages to get a new business off the ground these days. As a result, it’s next to impossible to create a unique product or service without competitors already offering a similar service or product to what your new business is offering.
While the presence of well-established competitors is daunting, it’s entirely possible to use this to your advantage when starting up a small business. Using market research in the early days is an invaluable resource in identifying established competitors in your chosen field and gauging what you need to do to compete.
So how do you check on a competitor’s successful methods? Here’s a list from the Albert O’Connor & Co team on where to start:
- Check out the basics – Find out how long different operations have been around, what kind of advertising they do, how they are priced, how many employees they have and so on. Getting a clear picture of different-size competitors will show you where you can slot in and the long-term potential of your business.
- Be their customer – If possible, play customer and try out the products or services of key competitors. Buy something online from them or call or email and request a quote. This way, you’ll get a solid understanding of their strengths and weaknesses. For example, are they booked up for weeks or slow to return a phone call? If your customer service is better than your competitors you are already on to a winner.
- Read their reviews – Online reviews are a fantastic source of honest customer feedback, giving you plenty of insight into what competitors are doing well or not so well. It’s these strengths that you need to replicate and weaknesses that provide an opportunity for you to do things better.
- Google them – Search rankings aside, have a look around your main competitors’ websites. Once again, see where their strengths lie and where opportunities exist. Are their sites easy to navigate for the information a customer needs?
It takes guts and determination to start a new business in Ireland right now, especially after the pandemic. The Albert O’Connor & Co Accountants team hope the above market research ideas can help you take the leap into business ownership and help you do it better than your competitors.
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