09 January 2007

Lousy customer service – where do we go wrong?

Excerpt from 101 Ways to Really Satisfy Your Customers.

This is a hard one to limit to only ten but I have listed what I have observed to be the most common customer service mistakes. The aim of including a list like this is to identify where most businesses go wrong and hopefully avoiding the same mistakes your self.
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This list is based on my observations of where customer service can go wrong:

  1. Keeping customers waiting.
  2. Making promises and not delivering.
  3. Treating customers like idiots.
  4. Poor communication skills (lack of ability to talk to customers).
  5. Poor sales skills (can’t make a recommendation).
  6. Inconsistent service (good one day bad the next).
  7. Making it difficult for customers to buy products.
  8. Poor complaint resolution skills.
  9. Not saying “thank you” at the end of the sale.
  10. Not following up on a sale.

You will note that quite a few of the points listed above refer to sales ability and there is a good reason for this. Customer service is all about meeting and where possible exceeding your customers expectations. Poor selling skills make the whole process so much harder and in fact, customer service suffers dramatically in businesses where the staff are not well trained in the art of selling. This point is discussed in detail throughout this book, reinforcing the strong relationship between the two areas.

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