Customer service is one of the most important aspects of doing customer-driven business. If the customers aren’t happy, they don’t come back, after all. Follow a few strategies to ensure your company is doing all it can to ensure positive customer experiences.
You can take advantage of this technique in-house, setting out a suggestion box to let customers immediately let you know what is working and what can be improved on. In turn, your Internet reviews should improve, something that is important to pay attention to.
A good way to start is to always handle problems and complaints in a prompt fashion. The longer you make a customer wait for attention, the more frustrated he will become, aggravating the situation. If the complaint is in person, try to resolve the situation where they stand, giving them highest priority. If someone contacts you over the phone or by email, make your ideal time frame a day or two at the most. Otherwise you can easily forget about it.
Customer Review Systems
Customer reviews by OpenTell, Yelp or similar online reviewing systems can be an excellent boon to businesses with high ratings, as prospective customers will check there first before visiting a new spot. For instance, if reviews of Garbanzo Mediterranean Grill, a local eatery, show up poor online, the restaurant could see a decrease in filled tables. You can either check independent review sites, or even hire businesses to install tailored review services to get the most relevant information for your company.
Compensation for Poor Service
Often when a customer is upset, acknowledging responsibility or fault can go a long way. People just want to be heard out. If the individual is still upset, however, compensation for poor service is a good technique to help the disgruntled customer feel he or she hasn’t been taken advantage of. The customer feels their time has been compensated even with small gestures like a free dessert, a coupon code off a future visit or a comped item. Many times employees and even managers will remain extremely stubborn over a small matter because they don’t want customers to take advantage of them. While to a degree this is understandable, letting small things slide will likely bring that customer back and work out in your favor in the long term. Don’t let pride prevent customer retention.
Clear Expectations of Employees
Good service can start at home, and training employees in a manner that promotes quality effort will be one of the best moves you can make in serving your customers. Employees will serve customers best when they have a clear vision of what is expected of them. How much interaction should they have with customers? How far should they go to fix problems? At what point do they kick the problem up to management? Go over these situations with employees for a streamlined service platform, and make sure that they know that no matter the circumstance, they must remain calm and not disrespect the customer. Asking a customer to leave is enough if the situation devolves.
Finally, remember to follow up once a customer service complaint is finalized. An email, letter or phone call a week or two later to ensure everything worked out for the customer will leave a good memory for that individual, who in turn is likely to give you repeat business or rate you favorably on those internet review sites mentioned above.
Customer service is in many ways a science, and you can break the code with some well thought out techniques. Be thorough, prepared and follow up, and you’ll clinch that return patron, which is crucial to any business.