How Much Do You Care About Your Business Customers, Really?
In business, everything revolves around pleasing your customers. That’s the basis, right? The customer is always right. Now, some people tend to have a bit of a twisted view on this “proverb”. Basically, it doesn’t mean that you should for example, refund physically broken goods just because your customer thinks you should. This would be bad business and not good customer service. A lot of times, businessmen and people in charge of customer service tend to forget that their customers are just people after all. They start to view them through trends, shopping statistics and so on. This detachment may lead to bad business and poor customer support and service.
If you are unsure if you are doing good work in this particular part of your business, there are a lot of ways you can actually get objective information about it. In my personal opinion, the best thing you can do is to go straight to the source and get the information first hand.
Market research can be used for a lot of things, but if you can’t objectively decide if you are doing something right or not, the best thing you can do is ask your customers. After all, they give the final judgment on any of your moves. Hire a market research team, or if you have one as a part of your company even better, and get them out there. Try to find out what kind of service would be ideal for your current customers and for your potential new customers. You can do this live, through surveys or questionnaires or you can take the Internet approach if you want to do large scale research without spending too much. Based on this data, you can start to adjust your business model and you etiquette to fit into the vision the customers have. Mind you, you will not be able to satisfy every single customer, this is impossible, but you can raise the number of satisfied customers and therefore raise your revenue and increase natural marketing which is a good recommendation.
The benefits of good customer service
I’m going to split the whole thing into two categories because I think they are both equally important:
By achieving a high level of customer service satisfaction you will gain a greater conversion rate (the number of visitors that are converted into buyers) and this is always the primary goal. Now, with the classic business model this depends on a lot of factors, especially for the people who are working in customer service and their talent and attention, but you can establish certain guidelines in order to satisfy the needs of your average customer.
With an Internet business, things are very different. There is no one-on-one with your customer. You don’t even get to see the face of your customer. This is why it is important that the design of your website is immaculate. The user based website design strategy is getting more and more popular exactly because of this situation. There is nobody there to keep your customers interested in your shop and that’s why it is important that they are immediately satisfied with everything they see. This has led to the creation of industry specific applications for managing customer relations and services, like for example LockedOn, which is great for real estate agencies. People on the web have very little patience for deciphering a websites and waiting for faulty shops to come back online. They will simply move on to your competition.
The customer loyalty
People love reliability. This is the whole point. Every time you go shopping for something that costs more than a couple of bucks you feel at risk. Is it going to last as long as they say it will? Is it worth the money I’m paying for it? People just want to feel safe and walk into a shop and pick out anything they like without worrying about its quality, since everything in their favorite shop is reliable. This is the job of good customer service, to get people’s trust and make them feel secure and at home. If you manage to get this right, you will have no problems.