Strategies for Customer Service Success
“It’s not the employer who pays the wages. Employers only handle the money. It is the customer who pays the wages.”
Henry Ford summed up the role of the customer for any business owner or employee quite nicely. Without them, you don’t have a business or a job!
Now more than ever, we live in the age of the customer. Customers want more, and given the copious amount of information they can access on the web and via social media, they have so much more choice. They also want to be listened to, feel respected and be rewarded for their loyalty. Here are some customer focused activities to consider.
Turn service into experience
Your customers want an enjoyable experience from the start that continues on with every interaction and touchpoint. A heightened customer experience comes from your ability to understand the emotional journey your customers embark on from awareness through to sale through to after sale service. There’s no point providing an amazing experience in just one part of your business and a lesser experience in others. If your customers encounter a great online experience but then need to queue when they enter your store, or go through an arduous returns process, then the overall experience falls short.
Turn feedback into action
You can’t deliver what your customers want until you know what it is. Ask your customers what it is they need and want. You can then create an experience that provides the expected value. Put feedback mechanisms in place so your customers can keep you updated on the quality and delivery of your goods or services. Don’t panic if the news is not always positive. Keep in mind that customers complain because they care. Consider customer complaints or concerns as opportunities to show how good you can be by being solution oriented, fixing the problem, and restoring confidence.
Turn employees into advocates
Naomi Simson, founder of RedBalloon, has been quoted as saying, “Without happy people in an organisation it is very hard for a customer to have a happy experience with the business.” There’s proof that engaging your employees and creating happiness not only improves employee retention rates, but also contributes to customer satisfaction and improved customer relationships. Enable your employees to thrive by allowing access to the right tools and training. Promote ownership and accountability and encourage your employees to solve problems themselves.
Nurture your customers and they will be more likely to spend more on your products/services, be more likely to spend more frequently and, rave to others about how good you are.
To keep you in a successful business or job, what can you do to keep your customers coming back for more?