Trying to understand how to make customers feel happy and appreciated should rank as one of the primary goals of any business. While customers can seem like a fickle bunch at times, companies that want to generate brand loyalty and repeat business need to determine what consumers want and how best to give it to them.
Research has shown that four items seem to consistently rank at the top of customer lists of what they want to know about the businesses they buy from. Those four questions include:
Do you like me?
Consumers want to know whether the people serving them actually like them. Consumers discern this information by how representatives of a business interact with them. Do salespeople and service reps use their name? Do they actively listen or does the customer have to work to get his or her point through? Does the tone representatives use demonstrate empathy or imply impatience? Everyone wants to be like, including customers of any business.
Do you care?
In addition to determining whether they’re actually liked, consumers also attempt to determine whether a business’ representatives really care about the customer. Consumers can gain a better understanding of this by the questions asked, tone of voice used, amount of eye contact made, the level of helpfulness employees exhibit, and whether they do or say something that indicates they care.
Can you be trusted?
Consumers attempt to discern whether the employees they interact with can be trusted. Trust can be ascertained by the level of confidence a company’s representatives display regarding the services they offer and whether they actually fulfill their promises.
A business can quickly lose consumer trust with delays responding to customer service requests or ignoring email or phone calls. When an extended period of time passes after consumer contact with a small business and the follow-up response, trust can quickly evaporate. A good standard to have in place is that all email and phone calls are returned within 24 hours or less.
Are you knowledgeable?
Consumers try to determine whether a company’s representatives are knowledgeable and competent. Knowledge is often displayed when representatives address a particular problem consumers are facing or the product or service they are purchasing.
Consumers are interested in whether representatives have solved similar problems in the past for other clients. If they have, this helps to establish confidence during the purchasing process.
To create an environment where your business enjoys consumer satisfaction, train your staff to excel in these areas of customer service. Empower your staff to treat customers in a manner that consistenly answers these four questions consumers have about all businesses.