Customer reviews and recommendations are the backbone of success for every tradesman, and what people say about your business can seriously make or break it. So how do you make sure they’re saying good things about yours?
According to this article by Parature, a leading customer service solutions company, 65% of 1000 customers have said they’d cut ties with a brand over a poor customer service experience. It doesn’t matter whether a business is large or small, taking care of the individual is a fundamental building block to ensure its front-of-mind potential in future and existing customers.
Lesson? Even if your craftsmanship is impeccable, the way you treat a customer before, during and after a job has a way bigger impact.
What Does Great Customer Service Look Like?
Show them you’re a real human
Word of mouth is a great tool to gain new business but potential customers will quickly lose confidence if they can’t find you online. Show them you’re a trustworthy individual by creating an online presence, adding an address to your business and putting a face to your name. Read this article on building your brand for some tips on how to increase your presence online.
Eliminate unnecessary barriers
Nothing is more frustrating than being transferred or redirected on a call. Are you easy to get hold of? If you’re available on social media or email, the average customer will probably expect a response within a few hours or a day at most. Clearly state your response times upfront to manage their expectations. Take notes from bigger businesses – find out how the top 20 UK retailers handle customer service on social media.
Educate your clients
Whether you’re trying to win a job or you’re mid-way through one – educating your client is a brilliant way to gain their confidence and utterly impress them. A pamphlet detailing FAQs or facts about your speciality is great added value for customers.
Under promise and over deliver
Customers have higher expectations than ever these days. If you advertise that you have a fast turnaround time then it better be fast. If you’re open 24/7 then make sure you’re easily contactable. Surprise your clients with outstanding service and knowledge and they’ll use you again.
Communicate more than you think you should
Nothing strengthens a customer relationship faster than honest communication. Pick up the phone, write an email, do what you have to. If you hit a snag, speak up – reasonable customers rarely mind mistakes as long as they’re informed, educated and offered a feasible solution quickly.
Respond to compliments and complaints
When customers complain, they’re actually teaching you how to make your business better. Whether on email or social media, take the time to respond to customer compliments and complaints as often as they appear. Read the top 10 ways to deal with customer complaints for some tips!
Check in once the job is done
You’ll be surprised at how much a courtesy call will delight customers once you’ve finished a job. It’s the ideal way to end off on a high note and stay front of mind.
And finally, find a way to say thank you to your clients. Whether it’s through a personalised stamp on your invoice, a branded pen or an occasional Facebook post or Tweet, it’s a good idea to tell your customers you appreciate their business.
Good luck building great relationships!
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