We all know that we should stay in touch with current and past clients. We know that the cost to generate a new lead is much higher than having an existing customer do business with us again. Yet despite this, many business owners find themselves wondering where their customers have gone.
In a study by the International Customer Research Institute, folks gave the following reasons for being "non-repeat" customers:
5% said friendships
9% said competition
14% were dissatisfied with the product/service
68% cited “indifference by the company”
Indifference? Really? Fortunately, there is a simple fix for this: Pick up the phone.
That’s right. Despite the wealth of tools businesses can use to communicate with their customers, very often the telephone is the only way people have of creating a truly human connection with your company. So it’s imperative that you focus on making the experience of calling you the best it can be.
5 Simple Steps for Getting Repeat Business
These five simple steps will help you and your staff turn first-time callers into repeat customers – and keep them coming back to your business again and again.
Smile when you answer the phone. No matter what kind of day you’re having, put a smile on your face and in your voice. Believe it or not, people can hear you smiling through the phone.
Answer the phone on the first (or no later than the third) ring. Today we all expect instant gratification. Making customers wait through four or five rings reflects badly on your customer service team and your brand.
Ask permission before putting someone on hold. Always remember that the person has a choice to hold or not. When you come back on the line, thank them for waiting. If you must ask the caller to continue to hold, offer to take their number and return the call.
Transfer calls with care. Nothing is more frustrating than being transferred to a multitude of people before finding someone who can help. Before you transfer a caller to another extension, make sure the other person is available and give the caller that person's name and number in case they are disconnected. Or tell the caller how to reach you if there is a problem.
Always offer of help. Never tell a caller " 'I don't know'" or "I can't help you." A customer’s problem is your problem, so be honest, offer to do what you can, or find someone who can resolve the issue.
Are customer service issues holding your business back? Let’s chat.