Last Updated on May 23, 2023

Who is a Client

A client is someone who makes purchases or makes payments for services. Clients might be businesses and other organisations. A client typically has a relationship or an agreement with the seller, as opposed to a customer. If the client is satisfied with the services provided by the professional, the temporary relationship may turn into a loyal and long-lasting one.

You are a customer, for instance, if you purchase a cup of coffee from a cafe stall at a train station. But if there are credit terms, the proprietor of the coffee stand is the supplier’s client. In other words, because of their agreement, the proprietor of the coffee stand is a client of the coffee provider.

We use the terms “client” and “customer” interchangeably when paying for tangible products. As a result, the owner of the stall also buys coffee from the provider. However, only clients pay for a professional’s services.

For instance, you are the customer if you hire a lawyer and pay for their services, the services of a chartered accountant, consultant, insurance agent, advertising agency, fashion designer, interior decorator and so on. You are still the client and not the customer even though there is no formal business relationship between you and the attorney. Clients or patients are the terms used by psychologists to refer to the persons they treat. Sometimes long-term customers are also termed as clients.

A client is someone who pays for services or advice from a professional person or organisation, according to the Financial Times Lexicon. According to some linguists, “clients are protected by others,” whereas “customers buy something from others.” Numerous cases, nonetheless, refute this theory. When we consider how clients and customers are treated, the reasoning rings accurate. Client-centric companies have their clients as the focus of their attention, rather than the product.

Read: Are Client Referrals a Cost-Effective Growth Strategy?

What Is a Client Base?

A company’s main source of business and income is its client base. Current consumers who are paying for the goods or services make up a client base. Depending on the sort of industry, a client base can be characterised or described in a variety of ways. It’s possible that new products are initially sold to existing clients.

The majority of a company’s revenue is generated by its existing customer base, which gets a lot of attention from management because it does so. A company runs the danger of losing its customer base if it spends too much time prospecting for new customers and ignores its current ones.

The cost of acquiring a new client is far higher than the cost of maintaining an existing client. Additionally, maintaining and expanding a company’s clientele is significantly more profitable. According to a study by consulting company Bain & Company published in the Harvard Business Review, “Increasing client retention rates by 5% boosts earnings by 25% to 95%.”

For any organisation, acquiring new clients and retaining the existing clientele are crucial tasks since, without clients, there would be no cash. Networking, word-of-mouth advertising, referrals, specialising in a certain field, keeping in touch with current clients, expressing gratitude to them, and constantly meeting or exceeding expectations are all tactics businesses use to expand this base.

Businesses that focus on professional services, such as financial planning, frequently refer to their “client base,” whereas those that focus on selling goods frequently refer to their “customers.” A financial planner’s clientele, for instance, would be made up of everyone who has agreed to have their money managed. All of the individuals and organisations who pay to have their tax returns prepared would be considered clients of a CPA.

How Businesses Approach Their Clients

A focused prospect list that a business hopes to attract can also be referred to as a client base. Attracting the interest of a potential customer base is of the utmost importance when a firm investigates, develops, and intends to launch a product or service. The new product must address, alleviate, or satisfy a problem or need for the intended customer base.

Companies assess the likelihood of a new product’s success using data from their current customer base. For instance, the business can assess the success of current items within each demographic by using information from the client base’s demographics, such as age, geography, income, or gender.

From there, businesses can expand into new areas or introduce new products to new groups that share similar makeup. Additionally, an organisation can use its current clientele as a focus group to get insightful input on a new product before putting it on the market.

The size and nature of the target market that a firm is prospecting for or aiming at typically determine the likelihood of success for a service or product. For instance, luxury goods are typically marketed to a clientele that has the financial means and is prepared to spend more for a high-quality good or service.

A company that sells high-end goods like watches or limited edition cars may focus its marketing efforts on attracting potential customers who have previously made that kind of purchase or are most likely to do so in the future.

Television, radio, and social media marketing campaigns are all examples of advertising and marketing that may be used to increase a client base. If a clientele is most likely to purchase a sports automobile, an automaker might, for instance, advertise in movies to fans of race-car movies.


The keywords “selling” and “service” are the primary distinctions between the words “customers” and “clients.” There are various situations that can lead you to believe that these two things aren’t the same. As an illustration, a business may have clients in Nigeria who it provides professional services, while also marketing and selling its products to clients in other areas of the world.

Both are crucial components of the organisation since they support its long-term expansion and prosperity. The company should produce goods in response to consumer expectations and offer services that meet those demands. This will help the business maintain current clients and customers, whether they are new or old.

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