The majority of the public work hard and long hours in this country. The weekends come and go. For some of us the weekends are the days of catching up and getting errands done at home. There’s just never seems to be enough time to get things done and to really enjoy and relax on the weekends. It’s no wonder some of us are tired and seem miserable. For some companies in retail for example, weekends are the 2 days they rely on for the best sales and profits. When I go into a store to shop, I’m not thinking about the store’s sales increases. First thing on my mind as a customer is to get in and get out. I don’t have the patience for long lineups and poor customer service. I know once I’m done I have to load and unload my vehicle once I get home and get everything put away. Been there. Done that. One more thing off the list.
New outlets of advertising a businesses is always changing. Avenues like social media, internet and you tube for example are just a few tools to name to get your brand out there to the world. Bottom line though, Customer Service will always remain the same and should be considered a #1 priority on your list in any business. How you practice Customer Service skills can create a positive or negative impact on your business. Below are a few tips and ideas on how to improve your customer service skills to get the best results in your business.
Always Greet Your Customers
So at 8am in the morning, your customers are the first person they see to the start of their day. You as an employee or store owner could just make that customer’s day so much better and take some of the anxiety away by just simply greeting your customers. Nothing makes someone feel better than actually being noticed with a pleasant “Good Morning!” or “How are you today?” I’ve experienced customers getting actually “thrown off guard” and looking behind them thinking you’re talking to someone else, when in fact you’re talking to them! It makes a person feel comfortable and important. It’s a wonderful feeling knowing that your organization was a truly great experience for them and will come back over and over again.
Treat Your Customers With Respect
Always remember to treat your customers with respect. These are the people who pay you, your employees and the bills! Treat them like they are your guests. Provide great customer service. Make them feel that they can come to you if they need any assistance, have any questions or concerns about a product or service. There is never such a thing as a bad question. If you don’t have an answer for them, let them know that you will find someone who can! Go above and beyond.
Talk and Chat With Your Customers
Over the years I’ve made it a mission to get to know our customers by name. Building a relationship with our customers is one of my top priorities. You’d be amazed how much a customer is willing to tell you about themselves. Hey, they are human beings too just like everyone else. Your customers will come back to you time and time again and refer your business to others because that special relationship and pleasant experience. Wouldn’t you want to be somewhere where everyone knows your name? Doing a simple gesture as chatting with a customer can be a very powerful tool. It can let an owner know about how well their businesses is doing and or any improvements and suggestions that can be made to improve it.
Interact With Customers In A Related Way
Again interacting with your customer can give an owner important information about their organization. Your customers are the best critics of your business. Every day in the land of running a business presents its own and unique challenges. Invite positive or negative feedback. Putting up a “suggestion” box in an area of your business is a great way to get your customers involved. This can give them a sense of involvement in your organization. Sure you may find some negative feedback but use this as an avenue on how you can improve your business. This is what’s going to make your business stand out from the competition. Act on them in a timely fashion. Deal with complaints in a quick and professional manner. There’s always going to be an unhappy customer in any organization but it’s how you deal with them and their issues that can make the difference of getting that customer’s issues resolved with a positive conclusion at the end of the day. Learn how to listen to your customers concerns or bad experience. Then act on them. It’s all about doing the “right thing.”
Turn Up To Work With A Positive Attitude
Customers pick on your attitude. Leave your personal issues at home. We all have bad days at work but no one will notice it more than your customers. If you are a business owner, learn to treat your employees with respect and acknowledge their accomplishments. Letting them know what a great job they are doing will uplift their spirits and make them feel appreciated and will work harder for you. When your staff are happy, they’ll come to work with a positive attitude and the customers will see this. Issues at work should be dealt in a professional matter in the appropriate place like your supervisor’s office or Human Resources Department. There’s nothing worse than hearing staff complain about issues while your customers are shopping or using your services. It makes it a negative impact on the business and bad experience for the customer. People don’t want to be around miserable people and it’s not professional.
Understand Your Customers Needs
Every customer is unique and important. If you are in the grocery retail chain business, you may have a client that has a peanut allergy and requires peanut free products that you don’t carry but the competition does. What would you do? Here’s a great example of understanding your customers needs. If it’s possible, perhaps you could possibly find out where these particular products are sold and see if you could find a supplier that can carry them in your store. This suites your customers needs and will ensure they will be coming to your location for this particular product. Simple little solutions like this can make a customer feel important and give them reassurance knowing that you are there for “them.”
Discover The Impact You Have Around Customers
I remember a situation where I had a regular customer come in one morning. He came in to buy a particular bread that we baked every morning for his wife who was at home extremely sick. He was anxious to get home. I couldn’t give him the bread as it was still baking and would require some time to cool down before I could place them in plastic bags along with the label. Really there was nothing I could do. He was so persistent and getting upset. Because I have such strong customer service skills, I asked him if he lived very far. He was surprised I asked this question. He replied about 5 minutes away. I offered a solution. I made a deal with him. Once the bread was ready I would personally purchase the bread come to the house on my break and deliver it to him and his wife. He was shocked that I would do something like this. He thanked me so much and said he would come back later. 2 weeks later he came back to the store with his wife and other family members. He introduced me to his wife and wanted to personally thank me for the nice gesture I offered. It was a wonderful feeling and whenever they came in to shop they always came to see me or request for me to help them with any assistance. Sadly to say, his wife passed away. To this day I will always remember the opportunity of meeting this wonderful man and his wife. So as the title says: Discover The Impact You Have Around Customers. In this case I feel these customers had more of an impact on me that day then the other way around.
Excite Your Customers About Your Products
It’s always exciting when a business has a new product or service that a customer can benefit from. Don’t keep it a secret. Let everyone know about it. Do research and education your staff on it so that they all have a better understanding. This way they can communicate back to the customer. Whenever we have a special offer, I can’t wait to tell the world about it. You’re customers pick up on that excitement and interest and will want to know more about it and tell their friends and family about it. Great deals or campaigns can be advertised via so many avenues today. Social Media, Campaigns, Emails, Flyers , Newspapers or Store Front Signs are some great ways to advertise. Customers can’t wait to tell others about a New Product they benefited from!
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COMMUNICATION AND BUILDING PROFESSIONAL RELATIONSHIPS
In any business Communication Is Key. Again, this moment begins as soon as I meet with my clients personally for the first time at their pre booked “Free One on One Consultation”. As I am in the business of home improvements and maintenance service, miss communication can be a costly expense for both my business and my client. I take the extra time to listen, understand, do the research and work out a resolution to make the experience not only a successful one but also a memorable one for both of us. Keeping clients up to date with how a project is coming along is also a good thing. Think of it this way, renovations can be a temporary life disrupting time. You are there doing drywall work, making the least amount of mess as possible in the kitchen, while mom the clean freak is trying to get dinner ready for the kids before you take them soccer practice. You are actually part of their personal life, in their home and are in the way. It’s stressful enough for both of you and this is why communication is so important. Listen to their concerns, questions and issues about what the plan is in their home. Building a professional relationship with your client will go a long way. Get to know them. Let them know that they can contact you with any other questions or concerns in future. Your services shouldn’t just end because the job is done. Your client may require more services or know someone who does in the future. Guess who they’re going to call?
Every project I come across is unique and individual with its own set of challenges, problem solving, completion deadlines and unexpected surprises. I take extra steps to communicate with my clients to make sure they are satisfied from the moment I meet with them at a “free one on one consultation” to the end of the finished project. I encourage our clients to inform us on how the Don Of All Trades Professional Home Maintenance Services experience was for them and how we can improve. It’s important to get your clients involved in the entire process. Bottom line is they are paying for it.
IMPORTANCE OF A JOB WELL DONE
If you are a business owner then you can understand and appreciate the value of referrals. As a I am in the field of renovations and home improvements here in the Durham Region, my finished product represents my company. I cannot stress enough how a “JOB WELL DONE” with my clients will go beyond the finished project. A happy customer will do the advertising for you. Beware: A dissatisfied customer will also do advertising for you if their experience with your services or product did not meet their standards and will have no problems telling their friends and family members NOT to consider using your services from bad personal experiences
Word of Mouth is a “Good Thing”. Happy clients will do free advertising for you! People that have had a great experience with a service will want to let others know. This is a good opportunity to ask your clients for Testimonials. Websites and social media are another form of word of mouth. If your clients are willing, ask them for comments so others can see. Some neighbours are nosy and are always keeping an eye on what’s going on in the neighbourhood. When they see your company vehicle in the driveway or sign posted on the lawn, chances are they will ask their neighbour what they got done and want to see the work. There’s always someone who knows someone who needs something done in their home or apartment. Your clients will also call you back for more work to be done around the house. Treat your clients like Gold. Thank them often for choosing you for their services. These people are your bosses and without them you wouldn’t be where you are today. Just remember to keep this in your mind-always!
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