Many ecommerce entrepreneurs really struggle with finding their USP – their unique selling point. For most business owners who want to define their USP, during our business coaching sessions, we recommend the process of discovery starts with first describing what it is that makes your organisation different.
Both the tangible things you can see, hear and touch and the intangible things you feel have value. It begins with this list.
What do you do that no one else does? Is it in the way you work? Is it in the way your product or service is designed? Is it in the way you communicate? Lets explore this further:
After mentoring many people over the years who are on their start up journey and trying to answer this exact question, what we have found is that often what makes peoples business different is in fact themselves. It is in fact you. Working with a business mentor to understand this further can be helpful.
There are many ingredients within a business. Many businesses are purely just systems or mechanisms that anyone can copy if they really wanted to …
Your competitors more often than not, can easily copy your product concept (broadly at least and copy exactly if your design is not patented)… and the way you do what you do, in many cases, can be investigated and revealed through research.
We see that a lot when cheaper International competitors flood markets or where someone has taken your product to an International Manufacturer and says “copy this I want to make something similar”…
If you are good at what you do, attempts at replicating your processes and products will happen in your business career but what these rivals can’t ever copy – the one thing that is always going to be 100% original, is you and your people.
It is your culture, your talent, the unique business mindset, your teams passion for what you do and how you all work towards your ultimate vision that will always be a clear USP.
A great example of entrepreneurial uniqueness is the late great Steve Jobs, who was clearly original and that pure flow of uniqueness. That ability to think differently, that ability to be a visionary – rippled through his company Apple and it kept it at the forefront of it’s industry.
It kept it original, it kept it pushing boundaries and pursuing a vision. It is the special ingredient that is not something that any other companies can replicate because they are not Steve Jobs. It is the same for your company.
So what will always make your business different and make you stand out is you, the business leader and role model for your organisation.
It is your unique personality and vison of the world, and on how you are going to solve the problem you are trying to solve for your customer.
When it comes to what makes you unique, an easy way to start to think about this further is to look at your product or service idea. What is it about your product or service that is truly different from your competitors? That no one else is doing?
You can be different on price, on functionality or on design. You can be also be different on use, application or different in terms of timeframe or how the product is delivered to the customer.
So for example, for growing an onlne business, if there is a product that everyone delivers within 1 day, well if you can deliver it within 1 hour that makes you different (it’s your USP) or say a service which can be delivered on a monthly basis under a subscription – again that makes you different.
If you start to flex some of those things mentioned above, then you can start to create a unique positioning in the market place for your business. There are many ways of crafting your USP but ultimately it will always start with you.