The customer is always right. You’ve heard this mantra for years – it’s been burned into your psyche. What does it really mean, though? It means you’re treating their opinions and needs as though they’re important and valuing their loyalty. A store is nothing without people to purchase their services and products.
Exceptional customer service draws people to your store and inspires loyalty. You learn how to please your audience when listening to complaints, comments, and suggestions. The more you learn the more effective your marketing will be. Serve your customers directly by providing professional customer service.
Customer Service Expectations
According to Patricia Adams, the CEO of Zeitgeist Expressions, 70% of the clients who leave companies are leaving because of poor customer service.1 That means seven out of ten people who leave stores say goodbye because they aren’t satisfied – they don’t feel valued. There are certain expectations that we all have about customer service. We consider it a basic service that is required to run a business! When a store lacks the basics, it shows through their customer retention rates.
Customers expect to be heard. It’s important that every business owner listens to the comments, requests, and expectations that their customers have. By using this valuable information you can market directly to customers.
Now that you know your customers need service, what do they expect from the representatives?
- A customer expects to be treated with care and concern. No one wants to deal with a grumpy sales associate or manager. When confronting a customer who’s looking for help or reporting a concern, be on your best behavior. Each customer has the potential to spread your store’s reputation. You want their stories to be promoting your store, not pulling it down.
- They want to see your gratitude toward them. If a customer has a genuine complaint, then they expect it to be accepted – not handled like it doesn’t matter. People are more drawn to a project, store, or company when they feel involved in the progress of the brand. Thank them for their concerns, and try to solve the problem. If it can’t be fixed, politely explain as much and offer an alternate solution.
- Customers want to see results. No one wants to be ignored. Once you have a complaint, make the results visible to the public. Everyone makes mistakes, and it makes your store more personal when you announce you’ve improved. Deal with the problems and let everyone know once you’ve enhanced your store.
How to Provide Excellent Customer Service
Ignorance is not bliss when it comes to running a store. Ignoring your customers can cost you a lot of business. Deal with your customers face-to-face before they turn to the internet to talk about their concerns. Patricia Adams mentioned that “Seven of 10 complaining customers will do business with you again if you solve the problem in their favor.”1 Work on satisfying the unhappy customers and providing excellent customer service for everyone involved.
Here are five tactics from Patricia Adams’ list that make customer service representatives more effective.
- Greet the customer verbally and with a smile;
- Listen to understand the customer’s need;
- Explain features and benefits of products or services so customers have sufficient information to make decisions;
- Suggest additional items that may address their explicit needs, as well as possible needs they may not be aware of or may not have considered; and
- Thank the customer. Thank them even when no sale occurs. Thanks – like praise – go a long way toward generating goodwill.1
Always Offer the Best
To offer exceptional customer service, you should leave your customer feeling friendly and appreciated. Offer the finest service, and you won’t have to worry about unhappy customers.
So how do you put the customer first and say they’re always right? You focus on what the customer is focused on.1 Once you handle what they see as important, your loyal customers will be singing your praises – and they’ll tell their friends and family about your good customer service.
With Paladin, you can expect excellent customer service. To learn more about our POS services, click here.
1Inspired by: 5 practices to achieve ‘Level 5 Customer Service’ by Patricia Adams