With trillions of dollars worth of economic output likely to be lost over the next two years globally, operating environments for many businesses have become hostile. Customers aren’t spending money, and even when demand exists, governments have restricted people’s ability to participate in several transactions.
That sad reality has made satisfying the customers you can get more critical than ever.
Customer satisfaction and customer retention go hand in hand. If you see the value in retaining the customers that are already loyal to you (and you should), keep reading to explore what we think are the most integral strategies you can roll out to ensure 2021 is a year where you’re able to exceed patron’s expectations.
- Relish Feedback
So much of the customer satisfaction puzzle falls on being willing to accept feedback. Feedback is the most direct pathway to improvement because it takes the guesswork out of what your customers want.
The trick to getting feedback regularly is soliciting it during and after transactions.
Solicitation during transactions comes down to checking in on your customers as they’re shopping or experiencing your service. If you’re told that something is off at this stage, make efforts to remedy the problem.
Solicitation after transactions can come in the way of sending out a satisfaction survey via text or email.
- Make Returns Simple
eCommerce giants like Amazon have set the bar high when it comes to returns. They’ve told consumers if they change their mind on a purchase, they can send it back at virtually no expense.
While it may be a difficult thing to do, you need to work towards matching that standard as it’s quickly becoming consumer’s expectation.
We tell businesses that are timid when it comes to aggressive return policies, aggressive returns do more to attract customers that will never return items than they do to encourage bad customers that might abuse your policy.
If you’ve ever been on the phone with a service rep before, you’ve probably experienced them trying to speed you towards a cookie-cutter resolution rather than listening to your problems. This push towards automating solutions rather than personalized communications is a bad one.
Any employee that you have talking to customers should be focused on listening. They should let your customers vent through their whole issue, take in everything they’re saying, and only then offer solutions.
By making your customers feel heard, even when they’re difficult, you’ll create a higher chance they’ll shop with you again while also de-escalating the situation.
- Hire People That Love What They Do
Happy employees always do better by your customers when compared to disgruntled ones do. That’s why, when it comes to customer satisfaction, we suggest businesses make paying attention to employee satisfaction a means to that end.
Having satisfied employees starts with hiring people into service positions that have a passion for helping others. After you find workers suited to their roles, your job is to listen to what their needs are the same way you expect them to listen to your customers.
If you do that, people will show up to work a lot more energized and better support your consumer-centric cause.
- Offer Multiple Problem-Solving Methods
Not every customer feels comfortable talking on the phone. Some aren’t native to the local language. Others are timid and prefer to use a chat box instead of talking to a live rep.
To account for the variability within your consumer base, have multiple means of problem-solving available to your clients. We recommend sharing a phone number, a digital chat option, and having great self-help articles published on your company’s website.
- Give When You Don’t Have To
Many businesses know there are flaws in their customer experiences and choose not to address them because not enough people are complaining. Let us be the first to tell you that you don’t have to wait for somebody to be harmed by your workflows before making adjustments to them.
Your team should constantly be auditing what your consumer goes through when they shop and make adjustments to ease that process. Look no further than Amazon to see an example of a company that pushes that boundary in favor of consumers before anybody tells them that they expect more.
- Be Accountable
There’s nothing that undermines customer satisfaction more than a lack of accountability. For example, a lack of accountability is rampant in the cable industry. That has made it one of the most dismal industries in the customer satisfaction arena.
If one team member promises something to a customer, honor that promise. Keep detailed records of conversations. Make sure you’re always able to understand the journey of a customer that’s having a particularly hard time has had on their pathway to resolution.
If you’re prepared to shoulder responsibility for your consumer’s less than perfect time, you’ll be head and shoulders above most of your competition and will profit from that status.
Customer Satisfaction Is the Foundation of Business Success
Attracting new customers into a business can be costly. Keeping existing customers is much cheaper and just as lucrative.
When it comes to keeping customers, investing in their satisfaction is key. Start prioritizing the tips we’ve shared and get more out of your existing shoppers today!
Do you need additional guidance when it comes to nurturing customer satisfaction and customer loyalty? If so you do, we welcome you to read more of the content we have available on our blog.