A foolproof business plan, great marketing strategy, and retail business loans are undeniably important for business success. However, what most business owners don’t realize is that outstanding customer service is critical if you want your business to succeed.
The retail industry is especially competitive. Business owners are frantically looking for ways to set their business apart from their competitors. They spend thousands on advertising and marketing not knowing they can drastically improve their business by focusing on customer service.
1. Customer Service Produces Loyal Customers
It’s cheaper to retain existing customers than to gain new ones. If you want your customers to patronize your company, you need to make sure that every transaction is a positive experience. The higher the lifetime value of your customer, the higher the income you generate.
The retail industry is riddled with competition. With hundreds of companies selling similar and services, you need to do more than advertise your product’s exciting features. Providing outstanding customer service, you’ll be able to differentiate your business from competitors.
Loyalty is founded in trust. Studies show that consumers trust real-life people more than the features and ideas of a certain brand. When customers interact with your staff, it builds long-lasting relationships and cultivates customer loyalty.
2. Customer Service Decreases Customer Turnover
According to the global customer satisfaction survey by Accenture back in 2008, pricing is not the main reason for customer turnover. It’s because of bad customer service. When running a business, it’s important to take proactive steps to exceed the expectations of your customers; make them feel valued and important throughout every transaction.
You can create customer service strategies for your employees to follow and carry out for at least six months. After six months, make sure to check your customer’s satisfaction levels to see if your strategies generate positive or negative customer satisfaction.
3. Your Customers Will Remember How You Made Them Feel
Maya Angelou says that people will forget what you said or did, but they will never forget how you made them feel. This definitely holds true in regards to customer service. People will remember companies that offer exceptional customer service because sadly, it’s so rare. Aside from exceptional service, consumers will also remember a horrible customer experience.
Social media can definitely make or break your business. Positive reviews on social media can boost your credibility and authority. On the other hand, a negative customer review deters potential customers from purchasing from you.
4. Great Customer Service can Add to Your Income
One of the main reasons people enter venture into the business industry is to make money. If you don’t make money, then you don’t have a business. By improving customer service, you can instantly set your business apart from the competition.
According to a Customer Experience Impact Report by Oracle back in 2011, they found out that 86% of customers are willing to pay more for better customer service. Another survey by American Express generated similar results. 70% of consumers would spend about 13% more on companies that provide stellar customer service.
Aside from gaining more $$$, bad customer service – or the lack thereof, can actually cause your business to lose money. Smart Customer Service reports that a lot of American companies are losing $41 billion every year because of bad customer service.
Simply put, providing exceptional customer service can drive up your sales, while unsatisfactory customer experience can cause you to lose a lot of money.
5. Gain More Word of Mouth Advertising
Despite the advancement of advertisements, word of mouth advertising remains to be the best and most trustworthy form of advertising. Back then, word of mouth ads is literally word of mouth. But as technology evolves, word of mouth advertising can also happen online – on social media, through online reviews, websites, forwarded emails, and more.
The beauty of the word of mouth advertising is that it’s free, so you want to use it to your advantage. Your consumers are more likely to believe suggestions from friends and family rather than an ad on TV. By providing great customer service, you can create a community of loyal customers that will sell your products or services for you through word of mouth. Make sure to encourage your customers to share their reviews with their friends and family or post it on your social media page to increase your referrals.
Improve Customer Service with Retail Business Loans
Improving your company’s customer service and your overall business operations is easier if you have resources backing you up. Retail business loans provide you with the fund you need to take your business to the next level. There are different types of loan products depending on your needs and preferences, so be sure to talk to a financial expert before making a decision.