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Great Customer Service Paves The Way To Loyalty

We live in a world of abundance choices about how we spend our time and money. From more TV shows than one could watch in a lifetime to thick restaurant menus that rival the heft of an epic novel, today’s consumers have more options than ever before. With online reviews easily accessible and customers able to research products and services before opening their wallet, it’s more important than ever to keep your patrons happy. Companies that are truly nailing excellent customer service are the ones that will see their efforts pay off in terms of better retention, increased sales, and customer loyalty. Make sure you’re on the path to a loyal customer base by implementing these tactics.

Encourage value added input. Smart businesses make the most of customer surveys. Most include such standard prompts as ranking the helpfulness of employees and offering an overall satisfaction level. Some businesses go a step further and incentivize customer feedback by offering gift cards (or at least the chance to win a gift card or similar prize). This extra step shows your customers that they’re valued and that you recognize them.

Don’t stop there, though. Ask for their phone number or email address during the survey process. This allows your customer service representatives to respond to the customer’s feedback. Whether the patron leaves a five-star or a one-star review, a response shows that someone is actually taking the time to read their opinion. We’ve seen companies go beyond that step, even as far as giving customers credit for inspiring changes that they’ve implemented due to feedback. In this instance, contact the customer and let them know you want to recognize them for their input.

Set your brand apart. Every company seems to have a gimmick these days. While this keeps the market competitive, it also makes it highly necessary to stand out from the crowd. Customers like a business that’s doing something different, as long as it’s value added and authentic. This is especially true when it comes to customer service. How can you make an impact on your marketplace? Try these ideas:

  • If your business is small, make strides to remember repeat customers. Use your CRM or similar tool to make notes about their interests. Contact them when you have merchandise or a new service that you think they will benefit from.
  • Don’t limit special offers to new customers only. This can alienate some of your regular customer base. Offer great, perhaps different, deals to each segment.
  • Start a loyalty program with real benefits. Most people don’t like spending time in the store to sign up. Make it a fast, easy process that won’t hold them up.
  • Host local events and volunteer in the community. Ask your customers where they would like to see your help and take action. Be involved.

Promote social media connections. Social media is an ever-growing market bursting with potential. It’s a fantastic way to showcase your brand and give a shout out to those customers who’ve completed your surveys. Extend your reach on social by offering special promotions, sneak peeks into future developments, and exclusive content. Connecting with your customers on social media keeps them engaged with your business. Hosting giveaways for your connected customers will also encourage them to share your pages. The potential following this can bring to your brand is quite significant.

Your customers are the lifeblood of your business. The most successful businesses keep their customers’ interest in mind before making any move, no matter how seemingly small. While taking these steps will help foster a sense of loyalty among your patrons, this is just the start. Focus your attention on how your decisions will be perceived by and affect your customers. Remember, their options are many. Consistently provide them with reasons to reward you with their loyalty.

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