The Customer Really Is Always Right

StrategyDriven Customer Relationship Management Article |Customer Care|The Customer Really Is Always RightIf you are a new startup, the chances are that you are overwhelmed by the amount of things that you need to get done. While you were once a specialist, you are now having to be a Jack of all trades. As well as being the owner, you are now the marketing executive, the financial guru, the social media manager, the reprographics assistant, the web designer and the coffee maker. You have a business plan to write and you might not even know where to start.

While you might be obsessed by getting all of your financial ducks in a row, securing funding for your business and ensuring that you have a buoyant cash flow, you need to consider the customer experience that you provide.

Your new venture will live or die depending on the reviews it receives. Nowadays, people venture online in the first instance when they are looking to research a company. Consumers are now incredibly savvy and want to know more about the startups that they are looking to do business with. If you are keen to hone your positive reputation, you need to have a policy in place that recognizes that the customer is always right.

Under Promise And Over Deliver

As a new startup, you have an array of already well established rivals to compete with. This means you need to solidify your reputation immediately. Ensure that you have a policy of under promising and over delivering. If you know that you can deliver a product in forty eight hours, ensure that you state that you’ll have it delivered in seventy two. This is an effective way of trading. When your customer sees that their item is on their doorstep seemingly a day early, they will assume that you have gone the extra mile. This creates a positive buzz and warm fuzzy feeling about you. This emotive response is vital if you are to encourage positive feedback.

First Contact

When a customer first makes contact with you, they need to feel inspired and confident that your company will provide what they need whether this is legal representation or a custom made tee shirt. An answering service for lawyers is perfect for those legal firms that want a polite and professional representative for their potential clients. Outsourcing this sort of service also means that you are more free to deal with more pressing area of your business vision.

If customers contact you via Facebook or Twitter, respond speedily. You can also utilize a less formal and corporate voice. Converse with your potential customers in a chattier tone and enjoy selling and marketing your wares on social media. If this will take up too much of your time or you are not au fait with social media, consider outsourcing this to a professional. These professionals will work with you to achieve your online and customer service goals through analytics and market research.

StrategyDriven Customer Relationship Management Article |Customer Care|The Customer Really Is Always RightIncentivize

While you can’t pay for positive feedback as this is not ethically sound, you can incentivize your customers to leave a review of any kind. When people receive the services or goods that they expect, they aren’t inclined to leave a review. However, if someone is let down or feels hard done by when dealing with a company, they will be proactive in seeking out ways to get their voice heard. You need to incentivize those people who are happy with your service. When you deliver items, place little discount cards in the packaging stating that your customers can receive twenty per cent off of their next order if they leave a review. Ensure that you have a range of platforms that accept reviews of your company such as Amazon, Trustpilot, Feefo and your social media channels.

Social media is the key platform that your potential customer base will flock towards when researching your company. If they spot a swathe of negative feedback, they won’t do business with your startup and will move onto another company providing the service or product they need. You need to hone those positive reviews. Any complaint (and you will receive them) needs to be dealt with promptly. Keep the customer informed and say sorry. Anything aired on social media is public so respond professionally and remain committed to resolving any issues.

You could have all of the funding that you need, a perfect supply chain and incredible cash flow, but if you don’t have the customer backing and reviews, your company will not survive. Provide an exceptional customer experience and your business will thrive.

Why Your Customers Need Choice

StrategyDriven Customer Relationship Management Article |Consumers|Why Your Customers Need ChoiceThe consumer world today is filled with options. Consumers no longer have to pay with cash or credit card. They don’t have a limited choice of high street shops to get the things that they need. They can choose from countless online shops, offering similar products. Ranges are enormous, and the options are numerous. It can be hard for a small business to keep up. But, you should make some effort to offer at least the basic choices to your customers. Here’s why.

Offer Choice Because Everyone Else Does

Because we’re so used to choice, we expect it, but we also need it. When it comes to paying, for example, there’s no longer just one way to do it. Shops, both online and in-store, give us options. We have different banks and kinds of card. Some people use Apple Pay for all online purchases. Others prefer PayPal. This means that your customers will have their own payment preferences. If you don’t offer them different payment gateway choices, you risk losing custom if they haven’t got what they need to complete a transaction.

Another area that you need to offer choice is the methods in which your customers contact you. Many businesses today speak to their customers via Facebook Messenger, but you may have customers that don’t have a Facebook account. Offer your customers plenty of options, and there’s no chance that someone will be unable to contact you if they need to. This can boost loyalty, improve the service that you can offer, and give you much greater opportunities to keep in touch.

You Need to Offer An Easy Service

If you want your customers to keep coming back, you need to make things easy for them. Offering them choices like how to pay, how to shop, product ranges and different services can make their shopping experience much easier.

More Choice Can Help You To Grow

When it comes to products, giving your customers choices of styles, colours, price points, services and sizes can help you to grow your business. It means that you’ll be able to offer something for everyone, appealing to a broader market. It also means that your customers will keep coming back for more. Say you sell clothes, if they love a dress, and you release the same one in different colors or prints, they’ll buy more, especially if it’s a great fit and good quality.

But There Is Such a Thing as Too Much Choice

While you want to offer exceptional service, an easy experience and enough options to keep your customers happy, you don’t want to dilute your brand, overwhelm your customers or make things confusing. Nor do you want to sacrifice the quality of your products so that you can offer more.

It’s vital that you work to find the right balance. Spend time finding ways to offer your customers the options that they need to make shopping as easy as possible. They should be able to find what they want and buy it easily, without having to worry about how they’ll pay. But, when it comes to products, listen to their feedback. Find out what people love, ask them what kind of options and extras they might want, and don’t offer too much. Make sure quality is your priority.