Strive not to be a success, but to be of value - Albert Einstein
Today, it feels like the difference between demand and supply is very skewed; there are far more suppliers for any product, far more cereals than you can choose from, far more clothes than you can buy from and similarly, far more people offering the same product/service that you're offering. So what sets you apart and what can you do to ensure that you remain in business.
Drive repeat business from them by creating value. The cost of acquiring a new customer is always much higher than retaining an existing one. If you're not driving repeat/referral business then there is something really wrong in the value system of you are offering. Now, the business of your customer isn't yours and you might not even have the full visibility of the same as well - but nothing should stop you from walking that extra mile!
While we all know that walking the extra mile is inevitable, how do you ensure it? As small business owners, many try to take it upon your shoulders but that way, you will never be able to scale. Additionally, it will be limited to one's abilities.
As Entrepreneurs, we know that it is one of our most important jobs to build a team, to hire people better than us so that they might be able to carry out your vision with an even stronger ardor. Thus the onus of the success of your client (and therefore you) rests upon the shoulders of your team and not a smaller group of people dressed up in suits in a conference room.
As an individual and as a team, it is important to do everything keeping the customer in mind. It's important for the team to realize the ROI on every inch of effort that they spend for the client. I've seen many people revamping their platform to the latest technology with minimal performance improvements and no features. To my mind, that would make no sense if you had limited resources. I would rather try to increase the customer stickiness of the platform by getting them more features.
Don't just put yourself in your customer's shoes; by going one step ahead, you are trying to ensure more business ➡ which will mean more revenue for your client ➡ which will mean more money 🤑 to be re-invested with you! Once, a friend of mine (who owns a company) said that his team created a social network without any "add friend" button, and while the team built it to the spec provided, they did not even find it wrong!
Try to create profiles and personas, go out to the real world and talk with the intended customers and study their mindset, what they want and what are their pain points. A team who thinks like an end customer would make the end customers happier.