Food businesses are attractive investments because they have the potential for high returns. Everyone needs to eat food, so there’s always a market for what you offer. Plus, with so many different types of food for you to sell, there are loads of ways to tap into niche markets and make your money targeting specific demographics.
The downside of a food business is that you’re in a highly competitive industry. You’ll be fighting rival businesses from all sides, so you must do what you can to stay on top. If you’re struggling to capture as many customers as you’d hoped, then here are a few ideas that will help you drive customer growth for your food business:
Target a niche market
We just mentioned it in the introduction, but targeting a niche is a fantastic way of accelerating customer growth. For example, what if you shifted your focus to a specific market – like veganism? Vegan products are growing in popularity all over the world, and there’s definitely an opportunity to tap into this market. You may target a smaller base of potential customers, but they’ll be more eager to see what you have to offer.
There’s a brilliant article on https://seekingalpha.com that looks at the plant-based food industry and how one company, in particular, has grown exponentially over the last eighteen months. If you have an excellent product idea, and you can really sell it to the vegan market, then it’s going to do incredibly well. The same goes for other niche food markets as well – they can help you tap into a new base of keen and loyal customers.
Give your products a USP
The issue with food is that it can be hard to set yours apart from the rest. Sure, you have quality ingredients, but this leads to higher prices. Then, you have the issue of trying to justify the cost to people who haven’t tasted your product. But, if you can find ways to give your products a USP, then you will have a great deal of success.
One area you could look at is the shelf-life of your food products. In general, people hate paying for things that go off after a few days. Especially when we’re looking at common products that most people buy. So, target this by finding ways to make your food keep for as long as possible. As you can see on https://www.firstfoodmachinery.co.uk/vacuum-packers/, your packaging plays an integral role. If you start vacuum packing things like cheese or cured meats, then they last much longer than if they’re just in paper bags of loose packaging.
Now, if someone’s looking at two types of the same food – but they notice one has a more extended use-by date – then they’re more likely to choose that product. Why? Because it lasts longer, which means there’s more chance of them using up all of the product and minimizing waste.
Speaking about your packaging, there’s another thing to think about; the environmental impact. There’s a massive clampdown on packaging in the food industry – mainly revolving around plastics. The world is aware that there’s too much plastic waste, and something must be done about it.
So, if you can reduce your plastic packaging, then it instantly shoots your business up in the public eye. Consumers love companies that are forward-thinking and keep to help the environment. The vacuum-packed idea might not eliminate plastic packaging, but it certainly reduces it. Just makes sure you choose a plastic that can easily be recycled!
Otherwise, think about using paper or cardboard in your packaging, and just generally choosing materials that people can recycle. This lowers your business’s carbon footprint, which does wonders for your reputation and helps you draw in new customers.
Look for collaborations
Finally, you should seek out opportunities with other companies in the food industry. While this sector is very competitive, it’s also incredibly diverse. So, you’ll find lots of businesses that you aren’t in direct competition with. By striking up partnerships with them, you can release new products or special things in collaboration. As a result, you tap into their customer market and can find new customers.
Also, think about the catering business. Consider working with local restaurants and providing them with your food products to use as ingredients in certain meals. They can advertise them on their menu, which may lead to some more customers. People eat the meal, love your food, then decide to go out and buy some for their fridge at home!
It’s not impossible to grow a small food business – you just need to be smart in what you do! Think about these four ideas if you want to drive customer growth and expand your customer base.