Your competition wants to learn about your products, services, customers, trade secrets, and profits. All of these things are relatively easy to uncover, and you should actually be doing the same to them! This is how businesses compete, remain competitive, and improve their product or service, as well as profit margins.
It’s a good idea for you to be aware of your competitors’ strategies, and how they may find out information about your business. Knowledge is power – and all businesses will use it to their advantage.
The Old Trick – Hire an Ex-Employee
The oldest trick in the book is to hire your former employees. By doing so, they can find out the ins and outs of your business, information about your customers, sales, and new products.
To combat this problem, you should be careful about the kind of information that you disclose to your employees. Divulge information on an as-needed basis, so that they never know more than they need to.
The competition might also ask your customers what they do and don’t like about your products and services. When they do this, they are trying to turn your customers against you, which will cause you to lose profits.
Counteract this by assuring your customers that you will always provide good service to them, and that you will reward them for being loyal to you. Then follow up accordingly.
Dirty Tricks in Desperation
Sometimes the competition is afraid of the impact the success of your business has on theirs. Instead of investigating and revising their own plans, they place blame on the competition and never really take control of their own game.
No matter what the situation is, you can learn from their efforts and resolve not to resort to such underhanded tactics. They might try and find out who your vendors are – which is privileged information. When they find out who supplies your products, they might try and persuade those vendors to use their services instead by offering them higher prices or other incentives.
For these reasons, it is important to keep as much information as you can private and out of the wrong hands. You also will need to be as involved as you can in day-to-day operations and business activities. You don’t want your business to suffer as a result of their dirty tricks.
Price Wars and More
Advertisements alert your customers that you have a great sale coming up. On the other hand, they also alert the competition to lower their prices as well – which gives customers even more purchasing choices. As you try to expand your business by marketing new and improved products, your competition will also try to do the same thing. These kinds of price and product wars only divide the market.
Spreading negative comments about your product line is another popular tactic aimed at stealing away your customers. To counter this attack, you need to stick to your business plan, make sure your product quality is above reproach and always provide great customer service.
No matter what tricks the competition resorts to, great products and customer service is undeniable – and your customers will see that. Even if your competitors are able to offer lower prices, customers are often willing to pay more for customer service that is second to none.