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John Pyron, the Business Doctor

5 Rapport Building Skills To Grow Your Small Business

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Successful businesses do much more than just sell products and services. They also build relationships to strengthen their position and ensure long-term loyalty. It is far easier to retain customers than to attract new ones. Use rapport skills to establish a connection with people and they will be more likely to come back to your small business.

The following are just five of the most critical skills that you should master:


Listening to understand

A lot of people listen without actually understanding what the other person is saying. All they are concerned about is proving their point and formulating their next reply.

If you want to get closer to your customers, make sure that you understand their needs and wants. If they have concerns, then do your best to see it from their point of view so that you can empathize with their situation. Do not dismiss their issues and do not talk over them. They will appreciate the patience and the attention.


Observing the details

Small businesses are on a scale that allows owners to interact directly with the customers. During these personal interactions, take the opportunity to observe and get to know your base even more.

Here are just a few questions to ask:

  • Are the individuals that come to your business mostly students or professionals?
  • Are they mostly men or women?
  • What do they gravitate to when checking the merchandise? Perhaps you can help them better by directing them to items designed for their demographic.
  • How do they talk? If they are loud and lively, then try to match their energy. If they are quiet and reserved, then try to be more sensitive.


Being sincere in helping customers

Another vital skill that you must acquire is the ability to sincerely aid your customers in achieving their goals. They can feel the difference between someone who is only after their money and someone who is genuinely interested in meeting their needs.

Disclose all the pros and cons of each product or service. Don’t push for something just because it’s the most expensive item. Be mindful of their budget and their intended use. Make sure that they come away happy with their purchases. If you make any promises, then be sure to keep them.

Finding common ground.

It will be easier to build rapport if you can find a common ground with the customers.

Perhaps you’ve noticed that they are wearing a certain brand or design that you like. This might be useful information that can steer them to the right direction while shopping.

During your conversation, you might stumble upon a common interest that you can bond over. This will help in establishing trust. They will see you as an ally with similar tastes and values. They will be more likely to trust your advice and recommendations when they see that you can relate to them.


Exceeding expectations

Never promise impossible things just to increase your revenues. This is certain to backfire. Do not tell them that you can do something if you really can’t.

Be sure to set realistic expectations that you can be confident in reaching almost 100% of the time. In fact, it is better to under promise yet over deliver. Customers will be happier when you exceed their expectations.

For example, they might be expecting packages to arrive after 3 days but you managed to send them the next day. You might also include freebies that weren’t mentioned in the sales page. They will be pleasantly surprised once they open the box.

Offering rock-bottom prices can make your small business more competitive but it will wipe out your profits. Find other ways of attracting and retaining customers. Develop your rapport skills as outlined above and you will notice the difference.

Here’s to your success


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