Regardless of your industry, today your communications with your customers have been moved closer to home with the advent of social media, email, and increased web presence. Yesterday’s intermediaries are gone and the speed with which your competitors communicate with customer’s dictates that you join them as well.
Battle customer uncertainty.
Here is how you can eliminate it, in five simple ways.
1) Be present and accounted for.
Your customers look for the person in charge, and if you spend an overwhelming percentage of your time behind your office door, that means they may decide someone subordinate to you is in charge of their experience. Typically when this happens, what they infer from these people imagine won’t be as positive as if you were involved.
To make yourself present in the eyes of your customers, you need to be comfortable having a relationship with your employees and customers. You may need to stop and talk to a customer for longer than you feel is productive, or have more of your time spent on small workplace issues that you want to. Welcome to life on the front lines of customer service. No matter what technology develops, business is still about people. Whether it is in person, on the phone, via email, over twitter, or perhaps in a google+ hangout. It’s still all about how you handle your relationships with others.
If you are present, that has a much greater chance of being handled right.
2) Be upfront and honest with customers.
It may seem easier to dance around an issue with a customer, ‘I’ll see what I can do.’ is an easy out, but in your heart you know you will hear from them again. The next time they will know you have strung them along. it is much better to let them know where they stand, and if it is fair they will likely respect you for it and may learn that they were either asking to much of you, or chose an inferior product/service to compare to you, or simply are not in the financial league to afford you. Who knows?
What won’t be up in the air is whether or not you were upfront and honest.
3) Provide reasoning and context to each explanation.
Explain yourself. Share your reasoning, the context of your perspective, and frame the offer for your customer. Uncertainty breeds on a lack of context, you need to tell them why you do things the way you. Why you charge what you charge. Why you can’t do something they asked.
Putting things in context has the ability of relieving anxiety and helping people take the guess work out what is happening.
4) Make both price and contact information easy to find.
Nobody likes being intrigues by a product/service and reading through all the material related to it only to find a ‘Contact us for the Price’ at the end. Some people will, but what if 15% simply moved on? What has your marketing accomplished?
How about a customer that comes across a company that they have never heard of, one which has no contact info other than an email@example.com email at the end of it… what do you think about their uncertainty of buying from you? I bet it is high. That is why you should put your face on it, your phone number on it, your address on it. Hell put a link to a google map of your location.
You are battling uncertainty here remember that.
Hope you are well.