5 Easy Ways to Improve Small Business Customer Service

Here are five simple steps every small business can use to improve customer service efforts.

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If customer service is designed to be a series of activities meant to enhance a company’s level of customer satisfaction – why are so many customers dissatisfied?

Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos notes that, “If you do build a great experience, customers tell each other about that. Word of mouth is very powerful.” But word of mouth can also work against you.

When a product or service hasn’t met a customers’ expectation, that experience can negatively impact your small business in a major way. For example, when most people are asked to recount their most unpleasant customer service experience, there is hardly ever a pause.

Unfortunately, for many small businesses, these ill-fated incidents remain on the tips of customer’s tongues waiting to be recounted over and over, to everyone, in great detail.

With a peak buying season around the corner, don’t let customers leave your store with a bad taste – or story – in their mouth.

A Sharing Strategy for Small Businesses

First and foremost, emphasize to all employees the significance of exceptional customer service. It is by far the easiest and most effective way to reach out and capture – or just maintain – market share.

The last few years, many small businesses have struggled to survive. Therefore, it is understandable that emphasis on exceptional service has been distracted and, therefore, not demanded from employees. But, training a customer service team doesn’t have to be complicated. An easy approach is to teach your team to S-H-A-R-E with these five simple steps.

1. Smile

A smile sets the tone. To a customer, a smile says, “I’m here to help.” Of course, not all transactions are done in person; many are done on the phone or in an e-mail. A cheerful voice can convey a smile by its tone and happy greeting.

2. Hear

And don’t interrupt. Ensure your team is truly listening to your customers. When you’re listening you’re better equipped to identify what the customer needs and how to help. With regard to an unhappy customer, many times they just want to be heard. By simply listening, the problem stops gaining momentum and the customer’s anger and frustration dispels naturally.

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