What Is Customer? Definition,Types and Characteristics
May 3, 2023 Max 5min read
Read this in Beyonce’s voice, Who run the business world? Customers. Welcome to a world where customers rule the roost!
This article will explore the fascinating world of customer service, where satisfaction reigns supreme and exceptional experiences are the norm.
When customers walk through the door or click on a website, they become the most important person in the room. We’ll dive into the art of customer curation, exploring how businesses can create a fantastic and memorable experience for their clients.
What Is a Customer?
A customer is an individual, group, or organization that buys products or services from a business, typically intending to use them to satisfy a need or desire.
How Customer Is Different from Consumer and Client
You will find the almost synonymous terms consumer, client, and customer are mainly used interchangeably. However, there’s a blurry distinction between the two terms.
A customer is a person or organization that purchases goods or services from a business. This term is typically used in the context of a commercial transaction. Customers are focused on obtaining a product or service in exchange for payment. The relationship between a customer and a business is primarily transactional.
On the basis of the quality and price of the products or services provided, the customer places their loyalty.
On the other hand, a consumer is a person who uses or consumes a product or service. This term is broader than the customer and can refer to anyone who uses a product, whether they purchased it or not.
For example, someone who receives a gift or samples a product in a store would still be considered a consumer. The focus of a consumer is on the experience of using a product or service rather than the transaction itself.
Finally, a client is a person or organization that receives professional services from a business, such as legal or financial services. The client and business relationship is typically more long-term and advisory. Therefore the client may rely on the expertise of the business to make crucial decisions.
Unlike a customer, a client may not necessarily purchase a tangible product but instead seek expertise or guidance in a particular area.
For example, a customer might buy a book from a bookstore, order a pizza from a restaurant, a consumer might eat the pizza ordered by the customer, and a client might hire a lawyer for legal advice, or a financial advisor for investment guidance.
Different Types of Customers
These are the top 20% of your customer base. Loyal customers are the type of customers that bring your business the most revenue. They have been purchasing your products for the longest time. Therefore they are also brand advocates of sorts.
As the name suggests, impulse customers are the type that makes purchases on a whim, often without much thought or research. Sales, discounts, recommendations, offers, or attractive packaging may sway them.
Also known as discount customers, this type is crucial in pulling up your business’ inventory. Commonly considered less loyal, these customers focus on getting the best deal possible.
They may compare prices across different businesses and products and be willing to sacrifice some quality or features for a lower price.
They are also called demanding types of customers because they come with a list of needs and make a quick purchase of the product.
They may quickly complain about unmet needs but are willing to pay more for exceptional service.
These customers make up the mall crowd, who love the shop’s ambiance and will come in for relaxation, etc.
Characteristics of a Modern Customer
Every customer is different, with their likes and dislikes. However, there are specific characteristics that we can pinpoint that all the customers share in common. Such as
Customers know well. Know that today more than ever, customers are aware of any product or company that they will be purchasing from because of reviews and technology.
Customers are on the lookout for solutions. They will immediately call the help center if stuck somewhere with your product. Therefore have top-notch customer service.
Customers are social creatures. More than brand messaging, customers trust an online recommendation coming from someone who’s tried and tested stuff. Therefore have an omnichannel environment where your customers can openly discuss your products and services.
Customers love to stay connected with you. Be it Genz, millennials, or anyone, if customers liked your product, they’d be more likely to stay connected with your company and product. Understand these trends and make changes to your strategies accordingly.
Customers have opinions too. Customers who’ve already interacted with your company are the ones that your new customers will trust. Therefore hear your customers out using surveys and questionnaires, and make changes to your product, as need be.
How To Acquire Customers?
Acquiring customers is challenging for businesses. However, knowing your target audience is vital. You need to understand your ideal customers’ needs, preferences, and behaviors. Conduct market research to identify the specific characteristics of your audience, such as age, gender, and location. Use this information to tailor your marketing and outreach efforts to meet their needs.
To acquire customers, you also need to offer them value. Customers want to know that your products or services are worth their time and money. Demonstrate the value of your products or services by highlighting their unique features and benefits. This could involve offering discounts, free trials, or other incentives.
Another important strategy for acquiring customers is to build relationships with them. You must be accessible and responsive to their needs, promptly answering their questions and concerns. Use social media, email marketing, and other channels to contact customers.
The secret sauce to acquiring customers is building a solid brand reputation. This requires high-quality products, exceptional customer service, and a positive customer experience.
How To Retain Customers?
Customer retention is critical to the long-term success of any business. To retain customers, you must provide excellent customer service, the cornerstone of any customer retention strategy.
This means being responsive to customer inquiries and complaints promptly and professionally. It also involves providing personalized service that makes customers feel valued and appreciated.
Offering loyalty programs is another effective way to retain customers. These programs incentivize customers to make repeat purchases by offering rewards such as free shipping, discounts, or exclusive access to products or services.
A customer is an individual or entity that buys products or services from a company.
Customers are important because they are the lifeblood of a business. Without customers, a business cannot survive. Customers bring in revenue and provide valuable feedback, which helps companies improve their products and services.
They also have the power to spread the word about a business through word-of-mouth marketing and social media, which can attract new customers and increase brand recognition. Ultimately, a business’s success hinges on satisfying its customers and keeping them returning for more.
Someone who does not purchase goods or services from a business is not a customer. For example, if someone visits a store but does not buy anything, they are not considered a customer.
Additionally, if someone receives a free product or service from a business without the intention to purchase anything, they would not be considered a customer.