They say that you never get a second chance to make a first impression. In the business world this phrase is doubly true. Follow these tips to improve your business first impression your clients get when they come to you.
There are a thousand ways your business makes an impression on your clients and not all of them are good. Worse of all, that first impression begins before you have any control over it. It begins with the street your bricks and mortar business opens its doors to. If that street is filled with broken shop windows and closed, deserted buildings, then a swanky uptown office is never going to do well on it.
The Importance of Improve your Business First Impression
Your customers begin judging you from the moment they approach your store – before that, even. If your clients are mostly city based and you make them drive out into the country to see you, they will arrive with an expectation that the trip had better be worth it.
According to Forbes, your business makes its first impression within 7 seconds of your client entering the building, or your website. Online things are not much better. SEO experts tell you to put the most valuable information above the ‘fold’ of your site, product description, or article. The ‘fold’ being the imaginary line of a newspaper, where people would scan the headlines and not read the rest. Online, you have between 10 and 14 seconds before people scroll away.
Tips on Improving Your First Impression
Now that you know how important it is for your business to make that crucial first impression, you will appreciate these tips on how to improve it.
1. Consider Outdoor Carpeting
It might sound dramatic but consider how much you spend each year on keeping the exterior of your building and grounds tidy. Bypass the lawn mower by installing an exterior turf. Artificial carpet can lead your guests into the building, greeting them before they arrive. It sets your building apart and, if you do have large grounds, it saves an ongoing expense on your overheads.
2. Think About Foliage
Plants are in this year. They create a sense of external decoration, without you having to do very much. They are cheap, take care of themselves once planted, and create that striking first impression that you so desperately need. Plants work especially well in businesses who may inspire stress in their clients. For example, if you own a dentist’s surgery, plants could help inside, as well as outside. Plants are a top tip for office makeovers, too.
3. A Coat of Paint has a Big Impact
Are your guests showing up to a new door with a freshly painted wall, or are they showing up to a grey building with grey roughcasting and a black door with peeling paint? If you want to make a good first impression, replace that door and give the exterior of your building a lick of paint. Remember, though you may think that the first impression happens inside your office, the client has often made up their mind about your service before they reach the foyer.