The value of good customer service
A few years ago the term ‘customer service’ was subliminal and not recognised as a key factor in day to day consumer interaction, whereas today consumers expect – quite rightly – good service and recognition for their business.
Customer contact, historically, was face to face or over the telephone or in writing, however with the creation of websites in the 1990’s, interaction between consumers and businesses took a different turn especially with the introduction of direct messaging and online chat …..and then came social media!
What we must bear in mind is that social media can impact hugely on potential custom however it has also brought customer and after sales service into sharp focus as experiences, good and bad, are shared online across the world. This means that your brand/business becomes known for either good or bad reasons – so get it wrong and the whole world gets to hear about it.
It goes without saying that most people recognise the value of a great customer experience – or put another way, the guest experience. There is a great deal of loyalty to be earned by friendly interaction and taking the time to listen, which encourages good word of mouth and builds upon your reputation. Research tells us that a dis-satisfied customer is more than likely to defect to a competitor due to bad customer relations than higher prices – conversely an increase in geniality and good service has more impact than a reduction in tariffs.
For some businesses the value of delivering a good customer/guest experience is not easily quantifiable – where there is no set company procedure or training, staff cannot be blamed for not understanding the aims and objectives of the operation, which is one very good reason why training and induction is vital to delivering the best guest experience.
In my opinion, providing excellent customer service is valuable as this benefits not just the customer, it also has a positive impact on your business – think of it this way, well trained and confident staff increases morale and is recognised by guests which leaves a lasting and favourable impression.
It is a win-win situation – for you, your staff, your customers and your guests so it really does matter. A friendly, warm and informed staff will increase customer retention whereas ill-informed staff could create bad reviews which may appear on social media – but with increased effort this can be avoided and good customer service wins the day. It’s entirely up to you.