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  In recent times, Nigerians have had to cope with increasing inflation. This is a challenge for businesses. As prices have risen, customers have become more cautious with their spending, leading to decreased sales and customer patronage. But this doesn’t have to be the case for your enterprise. There are a number of proactive strategies you can adopt to mitigate the negative impact of inflation and maintain high customer patronage. We talk about some of those measures below.
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Prioritize Customer Satisfaction

When customers can’t get as much for their money as they used to, they’ll want to squeeze out all the value they can get from every naira. You need to make this wish of theirs a reality by providing them with great service that’ll leave them truly satisfied. When they are pleased with what you’re giving them, they will be more likely to remain loyal and continue supporting your business. To achieve this, you should:
  1. Provide excellent customer service: Offer personalized interactions, respond promptly to queries and concerns, and show empathy towards customers’ financial situations.
  2. Enhance product quality: Ensure that products meet or exceed customer expectations. Quality products that provide value for money will help customers feel more confident in their purchases.
  3. Seek feedback: Regularly solicit customer feedback to identify areas for improvement. Actively addressing customer concerns demonstrates a commitment to their satisfaction.

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Adjust Pricing Strategies

Another thing you’ll want to do is strike a balance between maintaining profitability and keeping prices affordable for customers. Consider the following approaches:
  1. Gradual price adjustments: Incremental price increases over time can be more manageable for customers than sudden, significant jumps. Regularly monitor inflation rates and adjust prices accordingly to mitigate the impact on customers.
  2. Bundle offerings: Create attractive product bundles that provide added value while allowing for a slightly higher overall price. This can help offset increased costs while still providing customers with perceived value.
  3. Loyalty programs and discounts: Reward customer loyalty with exclusive discounts, incentives, or loyalty programs. You’ll want to do this within the limits of the resources available to you. These initiatives can foster a sense of appreciation and encourage repeat purchases despite rising prices.

Innovate and Diversify

Innovation and diversification enable businesses to stay ahead of inflationary pressures and remain competitive. Try these strategies:
  1. Product diversification: Expand your product offerings to cater to a wider range of customer needs and preferences. Introduce new products or services that align with changing market demands and differentiate your business from competitors.
  2. Embrace technology: Leverage technology to streamline operations, reduce costs, and enhance customer experience. You should make greater use of online platforms, e-commerce, and digital marketing, all of which can help you reach customers more efficiently while reducing overhead expenses.
  3. Explore partnerships and collaborations: Collaborate with other businesses to create innovative solutions or cross-promote complementary products. This way, you’ll share costs, and also tap into new customer bases, increasing overall patronage—two big wins from one move.

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Final Words

While high inflation poses challenges for businesses, you can keep purchases from your own customers on the high side if you take the right steps. Prioritizing customer satisfaction, adjusting pricing strategies, and embracing innovation are key components of this approach. If you continuously monitor market conditions, stay responsive to customer needs, and offer value-added experiences, you’ll successfully navigate the effects of inflation and foster customer loyalty. Featured Image Source: National Economy Newspaper
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This article was first published on 3rd July 2023


Ikenna Nwachukwu holds a bachelor's degree in Economics from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. He loves to look at the world through multiple lenses- economic, political, religious and philosophical- and to write about what he observes in a witty, yet reflective style.

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