Customers put you in business, keep you in business, and they can put you out of business. Therefore, your overriding feelings at all times should be: customer love, customer satisfaction, and customer convenience.
Begin by making it as easy as possible for people to purchase what you are selling. That means, taking phone orders, accepting as many methods of payment as possible, having a toll-free number, having a Web site where they can make purchases, and arranging your days and hours around the lives of your customers. This is crucial because many studies have shown that service is the third most important factor influencing a purchase decision, ranking right after confidence and quality.
In order to provide excellent customer service it is important that every single person in your company feels the same sense of wanting to provide superb customer service. It is the wanting that will make the big difference.
Service is an ongoing function, starting with a customer's first contact with you, making itself apparent during the time of the sale, and continuing on well after the delivery of your product or service. Follow-up service means repeat and referral sales, the best kind. Customers may have never heard of the concept of a customer-oriented business, but you can be sure that they know when a business is not.
Service should always be speedy, courteous, and better than the customer ever thought it would be. Give more than they expect and you've made a friend for life. Never ignore or argue with a customer. Service means solving your customer's problems, attending to their needs, making their lives better because they bought what you are selling. Always try to think like your customer.
As marketing expert Jay Abraham so often says, to provide excellent customer service, you have to stop falling in love with your product or service and start falling in love with your customers.
If you want to provide excellent customer service you need to:
* Set the highest possible standards of performance for your business and everyone involved in it.
* Not only know what your customers want but also what they need.
* Know that customer expectations must be understood and managed before they can be met and exceeded.
* Design your products and services to maximize customer satisfaction.
* Bend over backwards trying to be an easy company to do business with.
* Realize that the money you invest in customer service will pay off in satisfaction for customers and profits for your business.
* Build rapport and trust. Always be honest with your customers. People do business wiht ethical people they can trust.
* Make sure everyone in your company knows that customer service is his or her responsibility.
Great customer service is really a matter of common sense. Always try to think like your customers and you'll soon know what their needs and wants are. And always remember that people don't buy products or services, they buy results. So if you want to succeed in business you'd better provide excellent service that not only fulfills but also exceeds their expectations.
All contents Copyright(c)2004 by Joe Love and JLM & Associates, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide.
Joe Love draws on his 25 years of experience helping both individuals and companies build their businesses, increase profits, and achieve total success. A former ad agency executive and marketing consultant, Joe's work in personal development focuses on helping his clients identify hidden marketable assets that create windfall opportunities and profits, as well as sound personal happiness and peace.
Reach Joe at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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