Convenience, The Core of Every Business

Every business succeeds because of convenience.  There are countless examples.

Before supermarkets, people would go to the market for fruits and vegetables, to the butcher for meat, and to the general store for toiletries.  Today, restaurants allow people to forget about the hassle of cooking and cleaning.

Another example is Netflix.  Netflix allowed customers to forget about leaving the home to rent a movie or worry about late fees.  In fact, Blockbuster’s openmarket share was taken almost overnight when Netflix came in and figured out how they could be more convenient to the customer.  It’s a good thing Blockbuster’s CEO, Jim Keyes recognized this fact when he left his post at 7-Eleven.

Instances of Inconvenience

For the most part, when a consumer encounters inconveniences, they complain, they choose to shop at different places, or they choose to create businesses that solve those inconveniences.

However, there are businesses out there that make money on inconvenience.  As funny as that may sound, luxury brands have created entire experiences around inconvenience.  Their whole business revolves around being as inaccessible as possible.   They reduce accessibility through their extravagant prices and exclusive locations, mostly.  Just recently, LVMH even cut the cord on eLuxury.com, removing e-commerce from the site in favor of a pre-1999 online catalog.

It’s comical to see brands try so hard to be so inaccessible.  The ironic part is, that these brands are essentially selling an experience. They are selling the experience of inaccessibility, which for the most part, was something only movie-stars got to experience.

So are luxury brands actually making money on the convenience of the “movie star” experience?

Conclusion

Whether you’re looking to start your own business or innovate in your current industry, the real money to be made is in making products and services that aim to be more convenient.  Convenience is a competitive differentiator;  it’s a way to not only stay ahead of the competition, but it’s also the way to uncover new untapped business models.

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