Owning your own company, whether it be a boutique or tech startup, is a major accomplishment. Now that you’re established, it’s time to focus on building off your foundation. A professional appearance is one of your business’s greatest tools for growing your customer base, and cultivating that look is easier than you think.
Maybe suits and ties aren’t the right looks for your particular industry, but having some kind of company uniform helps you and your employees look put together, while also helping customers identify exactly whom they can speak to for help or services.
If a more traditional business look isn’t a great fit, there are plenty of other ways to introduce a professional dress code in your workspace. Screen-printed shirts, embroidered polos, or even matching baseball caps are all options available to you to make sure you and your employees look professional. This is especially important in a retail environment, where employees may not be as immediately identifiable to customers as they would be in an office.
Many consumers want to research before giving a new venture their business, and most of that research will be done online. If your business does not have a website, there are a chance customers might be passing it up before you ever get them in the door. Not having a website to visit can be particularly frustrating for customers who find your business using a search engine and want to learn more or confirm the limited details provided by the search result like hours of operation and location.
While there are many online services for building a website, you may be better off contracting a web designer if you’re not familiar with the process yourself – a poorly designed website could be just as bad as no website at all.
You may run your own business, but your personal e-mail account should not. There’s little that looks less professional than sending business inquiries to a consumer e-mail domain like Yahoo! Mail or Gmail. Once you have your website functioning, include a “Contact Us” page with an e-mail address that shares your site’s domain.
Your business e-mail address is a chance to make an impression on potential customers, so while a simple email@example.com is certainly acceptable, don’t be afraid of branching out with something more creative.
Whether you offer products or services, you’ll want to include photos of your business online, as well as in any brick and mortar stores. This is a time when even your best smartphone photography skills should not make the cut. If you have high-end photography equipment like a DSLR camera and editing software, you can certainly take your own pictures. If not, look into hiring a photographer to make sure your products and services are looking their best.
Make sure any photographs you take have a consistent, attractive style. Not only can they be used to show off your products on your website; you can place them on your business’s social media accounts to advertise to a wider audience and attract more customers.
You’ve worked to get your business up and running, so don’t let a less-than-polished appearance impact your business.