Everyone is being affected by rising costs and there is no sign of a slowdown. For small business owners, the conundrum is real: how to manage growing expenses without losing customer loyalty?

Every business will be different and there is no one-size-fits-all solution, but there may be some things you can do to lighten the load. Ian Walters, Managing Director – Distribution, at Metro Bank, offers tips on handling cost increases. 1. Be transparent: People may be expecting prices to rise; it won’t be a surprise to many customers. Communicate on social media channels; write on a blackboard in-store; personalise point of sale, but be really clear and transparent about the changes you are making and why you have to make them. 2. Be honest and trade on loyalty: Loyalty is bred through the relationships you’ve created, so nurture the trust that comes with it. Be honest about the challenges you are facing and try to counter with a loyalty bonus if possible. 3. Quality: Be careful not to compromise your USPs by cutting costs in the wrong places.  For example, depending on the type of business, you might be able to consider creating smaller products at the same standard, rather than compromising on quality.  Maintaining expectations of service and standards will reap rewards. 4. Seek help: Do not lie awake worrying. There is help and guidance available.   We also have business managers available in our stores and customer service staff available seven days a week; so, don’t lie there fretting at 3 am. Come into the store and see your local business manager for a chat. Ian Walters commented:

“At Metro Bank, we specialise in nurturing small businesses and providing tailored support. We recognise this is a time when flexibility is needed to help our customers navigate the current climate. Straight-talking, easy banking has never been more important. Dedicated Local Business Managers are on hand within our communities to help our customers wherever they can.”

About Metro Bank

Metro Bank services 2.6 million customer accounts and is celebrated for its exceptional customer experience. It is the highest-rated high street bank for overall service quality and the best bank for service in-store for personal customers, in the Competition and Market Authority’s Service Quality Survey in August 2022. This year it has been awarded “Best Mortgage Provider of the Year” in 2022 MoneyAge Mortgage Awards, “Best Business Credit Card” in 2022 Moneynet Personal Finance Awards and “Best Current Account for Overseas Use” by Forbes 2022. It was “Banking Brand of The Year” at the Moneynet Personal Finance Awards 2021 and received the Gold Award in the Armed Forces Covenant’s Employer Recognition Scheme 2021.