Create Happy, Loyal Customers by Increasing Customer Satisfaction
Providing excellent customer service should be a top priority for every business, no matter how large or small the company is. Businesses depend on satisfied customers to survive. In fact, research has proven that:
“Totally satisfied” customers contribute 2.6 times more revenue to a business than “somewhat satisfied” customers,
“Totally satisfied” customers contribute 17 times more revenue than “somewhat dissatisfied” customers, and, most importantly:
“Totally dissatisfied” customers decrease revenue to the tune of 18 times what “totally satisfied” customers contribute to a business.
If you want to improve your customer satisfaction ratings, consider trying one (or all!) of these nine simple ideas.
9. Treat customers personably
For in-store interactions, this is as simple as greeting them with a smile when they enter the store. If your business has regulars try to learn their names, their favorite orders, and other factors that make them unique. Treating customers like individuals is one easy way to show that your company cares.
8. But, don’t be overwhelming
How many times have you been to a retail store where employees follow you around and ask if you need assistance every few minutes? While making a personal connection can reduce incidents of shoplifting, no one wants to feel stalked. Ensure that employees are friendly, but also give customers space to shop and make their decisions.
7. Find out how to help your customers
Learn what your target customer needs to solve their most pressing problems, and then deliver. What does the customer want from your business? Whether it’s a delicious meal, help on their taxes, or a new pair of shoes, do what you can to make their shopping experience helpful (and therefore, memorable.) Think about their questions and concerns and aim to make that information easily available, too.
6. Listen, don’t challenge
While the customer might not always be right, that doesn’t mean that they should be challenged or treated defensively when they have an issue. Listen to their concerns, repeat back what they’re saying to prove that they’re being understood, and promise to follow up with a resolution.
5. Deliver on any promises made
Saying “I’ll help you resolve this,” shouldn’t only be a talking point. Customers will remember if promises are left unfilled, so if you make a promise, you’d better keep it.
4. Ask for feedback
If you aren’t sure what your customers need from you, just ask them. In-store feedback forms, social media accounts, and online satisfaction surveys are all great ways to gauge how customers feel. You can even incentivize feedback and create repeat customers by offering discounts.
3. Then, study that feedback
Don’t ask for feedback if you don’t plan on reviewing it. Every single piece of information from your customers is an opportunity to learn more and to keep improving. If a customer visits your business and sees that their ideas were taken seriously they’ll become one content brand ambassador.
2. Surprise your customers
The old saying “under promise and over deliver” has it’s place when it comes to creating happy customers. How can you go above and beyond to thrill your customers even more? A post-transaction bonus product, free training, discount on a future purchase, and other surprises are excellent ways to show customers that their business was valued. Waitstaff does this all the time, by leaving a small candy with the check. This “unexpected gift” increases tips, again and again.
1. Above all else, treat your customers how you want to be treated
There are endless tricks and tactics that businesses can use to quantify and measure customer satisfaction, and they’re all extremely helpful tools. But, if you keep this one simple rule in mind, increasing customer satisfaction will be a breeze.
Chuck Briggs has been helping restaurants run efficiently and profitably his entire career. After nearly 20 years in restaurant operations, Chuck began leveraging that experience as a hospitality technology sales consultant beginning in 1997.
Working with clients big and small, independent and multi-national, Chuck has represented point-of-sale solutions including Aloha POS, MICROS, POSitouch, RPOS, Digital Dining, Future POS and others. His emphasis the last several years has been on POS-integrated solutions for loss prevention, customer engagement, enterprise reporting, inventory and labor management.
Chuck holds a master’s degree in communication from Western Michigan University with a focus on organizational leadership, culture and climate.