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What Is A Customer?

Customer is the word that describes anyone who makes use of the goods or services of a business. Although traditionally the word conjures up pictures of people who buy at a store, the definition has broadened to cover the wide scope of business dealings.

Here are some examples of customers in various setting:

  • A passenger on a bus
  • A person drawing money from an ATM
  • People shopping at a supermarket
  • A business man connecting to the internet
  • A person eating chicken from a popular fast-food chain

A business usually has two types of customers: 

  1. External customers: these are the people who purchase the products or services a business offers
  2. Internal customers: these are people who work in the business, and provide goods or services to other employees to help the business run smoothly

Although you may think that customers are drawn to your business because of products and prices, this is only part of the reason why people become customers. Connected-ness, understanding of their needs and personal attention is a key factor in ensuring that people become regular customers. Another attraction is based on the context of the business in relation to the world around them. For instance, current trends see customers attracted to businesses who are ‘green” (environmentally friendly), offer online connection, or even those which have a clear policy of social responsibility.

Technological know-how is a big draw card for customers. In this age of instant gratification and internet, customers are drawn to businesses that offer online shopping or services, social media interaction and 24-hour connection.