Imagine you go out to buy a particular good from a shop. Sometimes you must have noticed the presence of multiple nearby businesses with similar products. That is, competing firms having their businesses close to each other. And this is a widespread phenomenon nowadays. This scenario is most observe in grocery, fast food stores, banks, gas stations, etc. It may confuse most of you. However, there needs to be a good reason behind it.
Competing with nearby businesses with similar products can be advantageous as well as disadvantageous. It can create a head to head competition amongst the companies. Firms need to differentiate themselves from their rivals to gain a competitive advantage. Firms can use various pricing strategies, such as lowering prices, bundle pricing, subscription pricing, etc.
Also, they can focus on better customer experience to achieve brand loyalty. Moreover, they can strengthen their advertising and branding arm to attract new customers while retaining existing ones. Hiring a pool of talented employees is also crucial for businesses competing nearby.
Advantages and disadvantages of having nearby businesses with similar products
Proximity can make or break a business. When nearby businesses with similar products locate closer to each other, it is called clustering. And this can be described in detail using ‘game theory.’ To be more specific, this concept is also discussed by “Hotelling’s Model of Spatial Competition.”
In brief, the theory refers to businesses locating themselves closer to where the majority of the customer population is. Companies engage in this intending to attract more customers.
When businesses with similar products compete nearby, they have to work together. They can spread themselves out as much as they can. And this will let each player have a significant share of the target market population. Practically, this will not be successful as competitors will not work collaboratively. So each competitor will finally decide to shift to the best possible location.
Imagine a specific business opens up a new store far away from the cluster with the potential. The business will not be able to attract an adequate number of customers, ultimately leading to a failure. On the other hand, the business can also become a success leading to more competitors flocking nearby.
Having many nearby businesses with similar products will give too much choice for customers. There is a growing challenge for businesses to become a go-to-choice for customers. Moreover, customers also tend to make a side-by-side comparison before purchasing goods. These comparisons can act as both an advantage and a disadvantage to businesses.
Related: Business Level Strategy
How to differentiate from nearby competitors with similar products
When you do business, there can be a large number of other sellers selling the same product as you do. Then it becomes a question as to how to differentiate yourself from the rest of the rivals. Your business, as well as your competitors, can have various advantages of selling. And you need to identify your competitive advantage to stand apart from your nearby rivals. The most crucial thing in this is to identify unique propositions that will make your business different from others. Some of the key points are as below.
Pricing techniques and quantity
Pricing is a message that your business sends the customers about the perceived value of your product. It has a significant impact on the brand image and the position of your product in the consumer’s mind. Price adjustments can be one of the ways that a business can compete with nearby rivals. Here are some of the strategies that businesses could utilize to compete with businesses nearby with similar products.
Market penetration through low prices
If your business has many nearby competitors selling similar products, a competitive pricing strategy will be of great worth. In other words, your business will not raise prices too high, nor will it reduce it lower than your rivals. Staying in moderate pricing will work for the business.
However, imagine you are opening a new business near your competitors with similar products. In that case, you will have to lower your prices than your competitors at the inception. And this will help you to capture market share from the competitors.
Bundle pricing is a strategy used by businesses to attract new customers to the product. They sell a set of goods at a lower price than they would cost if they buy the same products separately. Some of the businesses that can use this strategy are restaurants, TV channel plans, vehicles, etc.
This strategy will help you to increase your sales and profits over time. It is because customers tend to spend more than they intended to with this option.
Subscription pricing strategy
This strategy focuses on providing a discount based on the higher purchase value. The business will get the customer to agree to a commitment to purchase at regular periods. Through this, the customer can pay a lesser amount than a one time purchase.
Discounts for bulk purchases
Offering discounts for bulk purchases is one of the ways to attract customers when you have many rials selling similar products—world-famous online retailers like Alibaba practice this method.
Better customer experience than competitors
Customer experience is an essential factor that all businesses need to focus on. This is more applicable if you are a business with many nearby businesses with similar products. Customer experience helps the business to build brand loyalty and affinity. It will lead you to have positive customer reviews that will allow you to make more value and customers.
Your business can convince customers that you will provide a superior after-sales service as well. Therefore this will be an added advantage when you are competing with many businesses with the same products. Companies can enhance the customer inquiry response rate. You can solve the issues at the fastest time possible while developing a more reliable connection with them.
Moreover, listen to their suggestions and use them to improve the business further. Furthermore, the company can use a wide range of platforms to reach your customers with impeccable customer service.
Advertising and Branding
Brand image is a core aspect of any business. A strong brand name makes your customers remember your brand. When the customers are satisfied, your brand name will strengthen. A reliable brand name will lead to better customer loyalty in the long run.
Advertising and branding play a significant role in the above functions. It will help your customers understand how your product is different from the competitors and its perceived value. The business can make its brand stand out from its competitors for something unique. Also, this needs to communicate to the target audience through a proper branding strategy. Once a strong brand building, it would be easy for the company to compete with nearby businesses with similar products.
The business can enhance brand visibility to stand out from the competitors. They can pursue emerging digital platforms such as social networks, internet, e-commerce, etc. Enhance your presence through search engine optimization, online visibility, and social media.
Attract the best talent pool
One of the ways to successfully compete with nearby businesses with similar products is hiring a set of talented employees. The power behind every successful business is the employee pool. So this is mainly because they are the face and the backbone of any business. Hiring a talented set of employees will help the business to stand out from the competitors. They will be able to provide a quality service to the customers while creating a great customer experience.
In an ever-growing market place, there is a chance that many businesses are nearby selling a similar product. Businesses need to focus on the correct strategies to differentiate themselves from the rest of the competitors. Some of them are pricing strategies, providing superior customer experience, adding more advertising modes, etc. These will help nearby businesses with similar products to compete with each other successfully.