Your existing customers will be a word of mouth for your brand. Therefore the way you treat them will determine your future sales lead.
Impact of customer support back then
Thinking about customer support two decades ago did not create a major impact on future sales, however today with the advent of Internet and technology it’s the way around. Let me narrate you my personal experience.
When I was ten (back in 1996), I remember it was Christmas time and that was the first time my parents took me to a store downtown for Christmas shopping. My father picked up a classy blazer for him, my mother selected a beautiful dress, and both of them got me a pair of suit and shoes. Unfortunately, while packing the sales clerk mismatched the size of my blazer that we realized when I tried it at home. Immediately we drove back to the same store, but instead of apologizing the sales clerk behaved rudely with my father and on consulting the manager, even he was harsh. My mother (in a soft tone) said that due to bad customer experience, she will never return back to the store and also stated that she will tell all her friends in the same locality about the bad experience. And, we never ever returned to the store.
At that time, my mother had few friends in the same locality whom she discussed about the bad experience we had at the store, but the word of mouth influenced not more than 4-5 people. Hence, customer support earlier did not have impact on future sales.
Impact of customer support now
Today, with the existence of multiple social media accounts imagine how easy it becomes to make your bad customer support go viral. Customer who experience a bad support while shopping for products or service now have an ability to share it with millions of people who are active on social networking sites. And they do so.
I’m sure product or service reviews has an important role to play in making a purchase decision, for most of us today. Hence, the way you treat your customers will determine the competitive advantage in the year 2015.
Here are few ways that will help you encourage your customers to shout out a good word for your brand and divert more sales for your business.
Stick to your word
You don’t have to overdo to impress your customers, but at the same time it becomes very important to stick to your word. For instance, if you offer a freebie with particular product, or you offer free shipping, or a next-day delivery on your website ensure you are able to fulfill it. Don’t overcommit! Performing what’s said will create a unique trust in their mind and refer your brand to others as a trustworthy one.
Customers like surprises
It’s always a good idea to do a little extra for your customers out-of-the blue. Offer free product that you think they will like (refer customer’s data and know their preference). Call your loyal customers or email them at special occasions that can include birthdays, anniversaries, etc. By offering surprises to them, they’ll love you for it and share their good experience with the close ones and over social networking sites too.
Today, customers will prefer to shop from a site or store that value their time. Customers may upfront choose your brand but that doesn’t mean you take them for granted. In this competitive world, always remember it takes fraction of seconds for customers to discontinue with your brand and jump to one of competitors who does value customer’s time. Ensure you focus more on this factor which will take you a long way.
Be a good listener
Upfront offering customers what they like will keep you ahead in the competition. Dig up customer’s history and analyse their preferences and challenges they faced and offer services and solutions that will not only encourage them to make your brand one of their favorites but also divert new sales lead for your business.
We have already stepped in a new year, and one of the current trend to keep you in business is how well you design your customer support. Because, your happy customers will be the key success for your business in the year 2015.