Customer Service can make or break a company’s image and have a dramatic effect on the overall success of any company.
Let’s consider a company with bad customer service. This could be a large or small company. They could make good products, but the customer service is lacking. A prospective customer walks through the door and the sales associates are gossiping with each other versus offering to help a customer. Immediately, without saying anything, the customer is put off. After a few minutes, one of the sales associates walks over and offers to assist the customer. It seems like a big leap from such a small act as talking with your coworkers, but the customer’s very first impression is that the store is not professional. Such subtle actions can have a big impact on what your customers think of your business. They walk into an office and your receptionist is texting on their cell phone or browsing their social media feed. The customer gains an immediate perception that they are not a high priority. Have you ever felt frustration at trying to reach out to a business and you get put on hold with cheesy music for an extended period of time? Right from the start, this makes you frustrated with the company. How about when you have a problem and try to return an item in good faith only to find out that they have no return policy or the warranty turns out to not be a usable warranty at all? How does that affect your perception with this business?
Everything from how your employee’s greet a customer to how they react in a challenging situation will affect the overall customer service experience your consumer’s experience.
Consumers today are educated and demand a high level of professionalism and integrity in businesses. Many consumers research an item online and learn everything they can before making a major purchase. They might look for reviews, watch videos and conduct extensive research before considering a purchase or a visit to your business. Many consumers will reach out to online social groups to ask friends for the personal experience or opinion. These reviews and opinions are capable of becoming viral, which means your consumer’s experience should be your number one priority.
How would you customer service stack up if it were under a microscope or worse blasted all over social media?
Consumers today are not hoping for high levels of customer service, they are expecting it. Consumers don’t expect perfection and can be fairly understanding of challenges businesses face, but they are expecting representatives at businesses to be knowledgeable about what they are selling, to understand their concerns, who want to work with people who with empathy, patience, and care. When a challenge arises, consumers want a quick response. They expect someone to pick up the phone, listen with empathy, and find a resolution quickly. They expect to be made to feel that their business is a high priority and the representative of the company will look after them long after the initial sales process.
I have always been impressed when I walk into an Apple Store. Despite how busy they seem to be, I am always greeted with a smile from a well-dressed employee who seems happy and eager to help. I have been asked to wait, but I have had my concern noted and reassured that as soon as an employee is available, I will be helped immediately. My experience has been that the staff are knowledgeable and are willing to work with me until I am confident and ready to walk out of the store. Apple’s employees always have made me feel that they understand my needs.
Shopping is rapidly changing and those businesses which have highly trained employees who have exceptional customer service will stay ahead. It is a company’s staff that are their most valuable or costly resource. It is the employees that can make or break a company’s success.
If you are looking for some fresh ideas or an outside perspective to have world class customer service, reach out to Honor Sales. We keep it real and offer straight advice and strategies to help your team have top notch customer service skills.