Ensuring Customer SatisfactionCustomer service plays a vital role in a business's success. Exceptional customer service sets your business apart from your competitors and in a small country like Bermuda where word-of-mouth is such a persuasive factor, it can be as important as paid advertising.
Oftentimes good customer service can turn a negative into a positive. In fact, a company that deals with a customer complaint properly can impress a customer so that the impression left is not the problem but how well the business managed it.
It’s in a business’s legal interest to ensure good customer service as well. Under the Consumer Protection Act 1999, your company is held liable for any representation your staff makes while performing their duties.
Here are tips to ensure your business leaves the right impression:
Hire the Right People
The typical customer service interaction begins with the salesperson. You do not want to hire employees who are insensitive to customers' needs and requests, who cause customer complaints, who don't appear to care, who overlook opportunities to go the extra mile or those who give customers reasons to go to the competition.
Customers love to have sales staff greet them with a smile, show enthusiasm in what they are selling, move quickly to respond to a customer’s requests and, above all, treat customers as if they are special.
Train the Staff
Extensive training for new employees is a must, and should include the following:
- Details about the products and services offered;
- Store policies on refunds;
- Gift certificates;
- How to approach customers.
Sometimes the most costly mistakes can happen when a salesperson says "I don't know", "We can't do that", "You'll have to talk to…", or "Hang on a second, I'll be right back." Customers may leave and not return.
Be Proactive, Not Reactive
No one wants to have complaints made about their business. However, it is an everyday fact that customers will complain. A good strategy is to have a structured complaint management system that will deal with customer complaints effectively, efficiently and promptly.
Find Out What Customers Want
Communications play an important role in customer satisfaction. Investigate what they want and how they see you. This is best done through in-store surveys. Do periodic reviews of your customers' satisfaction and make sure to give them feedback.
Educate Your Customers
Make sure that customers are aware and understand store policies regarding returns, refunds, gift certificates and warranties before they buy the product.