According to the Small Business Administration, there were over 30 million small businesses in the United States in 2018. And as time passes, that number only continues to grow.
This means that if you’re a small business owner, you have quite a bit of competition to contend with, regardless of niche. With all that competition, how do you stand out amongst the crowd? Well, one of the best ways to not only stand out but grow your business is by providing an excellent customer experience to your client base.
Customer experience is your customers’ perception of your business as a whole, from their first impression all the way to the completion of the service or arrival of the product. As a business owner, your goal should be for as many customers to walk away smiling as possible.
This will make your existing customers more likely to become loyal clients, as well as improve your word of mouth advertisement. Which, believe it or not, is as important as ever.
Read on to learn a few customer service tips that will earn you both the respect and loyalty of your clients.
We’ve all been there – you’re dealing with an irate customer, you know you’re in the right, and keeping your cool is incredibly difficult. Even in these instances, however, remember that positivity is key.
Your customers (even the difficult ones) should be given a positive experience regardless of who they’re speaking to or what the interaction is in reference to. By maintaining a positive attitude no matter the situation, you’ll find that even the most difficult clients become repeat customers.
Sure, you’re going to lose some here and there. Not every business is a great fit for every customer, and that’s okay. But be sure that you can walk away from every interaction with your customers knowing that you remained positive and kind the entire time.
Take Feedback Seriously
The majority of your feedback is (hopefully) going to be positive. That said, every once in a while, you’re going to receive a concern or frustration from a customer. These can be tough to take, but it’s crucial that you take every piece of feedback seriously, even the negative ones.
Listen to your customer and ensure that you’re actually hearing what they’re saying. Nothing turns a customer away faster than feeling as if they don’t matter to you.
And if you notice that you get the same comment from multiple customers, pay especially close attention. This is an opportunity to take their feedback into consideration and improve your business through it. Your customers know what they want – make sure you’re giving it to them!
Cultivate Memorable Experiences
When you’re working on your customer experience strategy, keep in mind that, more often than not, the little things are what make the biggest difference. Odds are, you aren’t making any huge, glaring errors. But making positive adjustments here and there can make all the difference in the world in the eyes of your customers.
The adjustments you need to make will depend on your specific business and circumstances, but here are some helpful tips for creating memorable customer experiences.
Address Everyone by Name
Not everyone enjoys being referred to as “sir” or “ma’am,” and it’s better to make your customers feel as though they’re part of a family anyway. Instead of formal, impersonal titles, do your best to address each customer by name.
This stands regardless of whether you’re speaking to them in person, over the phone, or via email. Doing so goes a long way in making each of your customers feel that you care about them as an individual.
Send Personalized Responses
There’s nothing worse than a form email. Refrain from sending generic responses when your customers sign up for a free trial or purchase a product from you. Instead, send them a personalized email.
It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate – your customers don’t need and likely won’t enjoy a lengthy message. Take a few minutes to type out a short but sincere message to each customer, thanking them for choosing your company and inviting them to reach out, should they need any help or have any questions.
The Customer is Always Right
Your company is going to make a mistake now and then, it’s true. But sometimes, an error is the fault of the customer, not you or your company. However, it’s important that you never treat the customer like they’re wrong, even when they are.
Mistakes happen, and instead of pointing out your customers’ user error, treat the situation the same way that you would if the fault had lied with you. Do your best to help your client come up with a solution anyway.
If you see a way to improve your company’s image by going the extra mile with your customers, take it! You never know, your next glowing review from a customer could be the one to skyrocket your business.
If you’re feeling lost or overwhelmed, don’t be afraid to reach out to a professional for help. Companies such as ScentAir have a great deal of experience in creating positive customer experiences and can help you take yours to the next level.
Improve Your Business by Providing an Outstanding Customer Experience
Small businesses make up the vast majority of commerce in the United States, meaning that if you want to grow your business, you need to provide top-notch service to your customers.
With an outstanding customer experience, you’ll not only boost your customer retention but create a positive buzz around your business that attracts new clients.
For more tips and tricks for improving your business, take a look at our blog!