Often a small store will find itself competing head-on with a major supersized Kmart, Target, CompUSA–you name it. As these big corporations search for more and more market share, they are moving into more and more suburbs and small towns.
What do you do if your small store has to compete with these much larger “big box” stores? First off, forget trying to beat them on price. Their massive bulk discount buying and computerized distribution will keep them way ahead while you quickly go broke.
Instead, keep your customers by doing things the big stores can’t. Greet your customers by name if possible. People love it when the manger or owner rings up their purchase.
Answer questions and offer advice to customers. The hourly worker at the big competitor probably doesn’t know nearly as much about the product or service as you do.
Get involved in the community. Sponsor kids’ sports, church bulletins, and charity drives. You want your name listed where residents are used to seeing hometown businesses promoted.
Look for specialty areas where you can go deep. Most big stores cover lots of variety with very little depth.