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How great customer service can increase sales

It’s not just a great product that will increase the number of sales you make, your customer service can also play a crucial role too.

Customer service, specifically excellent customer service, could be described as the true meaning of customer loyalty. It can result in your business gaining repeat customers and referrals for new customers.

Excellent customer service goes a long way and promotes more sale opportunities because you’re building a company with a reputation for always wanting to impress their customers.

Studies show that 86% of people will pay more for great customer service.

Great customer service allows you to:

  • Solicit feedback to improve your product
  • Gain new and repeat customers
  • Go the extra mile

Let’s take a further look at these points.

Solicit feedback to improve your product 

When you provide customer service, you have an opportunity to get customer feedback. Whether this feedback is good or bad, it’s very useful for your ecommerce store as it improves your product, meaning that it also improves customer loyalty.

Good customer feedback:

Suppose your store sells t-shirts online.

A customer emails in to tell you they were very happy with the service they received and they wanted to say thank you for packing the t-shirt so nicely as it was a gift for a friend.

This is an example of good customer feedback and could be used (with permission) as a testimonial for your product to help inform others that your store is where they should be buying from.

Placing this testimonial on your site for other customers to see can improve your chances of getting more sales.

Bad customer feedback:

Bad customer feedback doesn’t always have to be negative. It is only negative if you handle it in the wrong way. Used effectively you can improve your product, sell more and ensure that others don’t have the same problems – meaning it can also improve your customer loyalty.

Let’s go back to the t-shirt store. Suppose now, a customer emails to say that the photo of the t-shirt was a different shade of blue to the one they received.

As a customer service team, you would email back to say you’re sorry. You would also look at your website and see if it’s a problem with the photo or a problem with the manufacturing.

If you found that it was a problem with the way the photo was taken, you might email back to say something like this:

“Hello customer,

We’re awfully sorry that you’ve experienced this.

It was actually a problem with the way the image was edited that made it appear brighter than it does in person. We completely understand that this is an annoyance for you so we have done the following things:

  1. Changed the photo on our website so it matches the exact colour of t-shirt.
  2. Issued you a full refund which you can use to either buy a new t-shirt if you want to, or something else.”

This customer service, although it was addressing a negative problem, was turned into a positive because it helped you fix an issue that other customers might have been having and could have stopped them from returning to your store.

Gain new and repeat customers

Great customer service is brilliant because people love to talk, both online and offline. As we stated earlier, customers are willing to pay more money from a company they know have excellent customer service.

They’re also willing to be more forgiving when things go wrong, especially if they know their complaints will be responded to, quickly, with a useful answer.

If your customers are talking about you, make it your mission to find out about it. Online, you can use tools like Hootsuite and TweetDeck to keep track of who is talking about you and what they’re saying. This way you can address people’s issues before they have a chance to contact you.

This is effective and can increase sales because it shows that you’re actively looking for ways in which you can help your current and potential customers.

Go the extra mile

Customer service doesn’t have to just come into play when your customer makes a complaint. You should endeavour to offer great customer service all the time.

Suppose you have an online wine store. You have a customer who buys wine from you a lot. If you’re making use of an online loyalty program then you’ll easily be able to see who is making lots of repeat purchases.

Now suppose that you follow this customer on social media and you notice one day that it’s their birthday coming up. It’s a big birthday and they’re really excited.

You could send them a bottle of their favourite wine, for free with a nice birthday message:

“Hi customer,

We noticed you always buy this wine and we also noticed it’s your birthday coming up, so from all of us at Wine & Dine, we hope you have an ace day.”

This sort of extra quality goes a long way and it’s the sort of thing people remember. So next time someone is looking to buy some wine online they might think:

“Hey, what was that wine company called who sent Peter that bottle of wine for his birthday?”

Customer service, when done right is a great way to improve sales for your online store. People aren’t going to be able to buy from you if they don’t know you exist and customer service done right is one way to widen your reach and increase sales.

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