As a small business owner, what do you think about when I say, “Excellent customer service?” I’m sure many of you would offer advice on being friendly to prospective clients, knowing your product or service well enough to answer presales questions and making sure they feel special. However, not much attention is given to extending customer service post-sale. According to a report by the CMO Council, only 17% of North American customers believe brands care about them after the point of purchase. If you can get it right, your business will have a competitive advantage. Once you’ve done the work to convince someone to buy your product, make sure your level of service doesn’t stop there. Here are three ways to delight customers after the sale.
1. Say Thank You
Post-sale service starts with saying thank you. If you’re running an online business, make sure to send an email confirmation thanking the customer for his purchase and giving next steps. Similarly, if you’ve sold a product, give instructions on how it can be downloaded or when it will be shipped. If you offer a service, give a timeline for how she can access it. Follow up a few days later with another thank you email and an invitation to for them to ask questions about the new product or service. You can even add a link to frequently asked questions if you have one.
2. Ship Your Product On-Time
One of the quickest ways to lose a customer (and likely gain some negative reviews) is not delivering what you promise when you promise it. For digital products, resolving this may be as simple as fixing a broken link. For a physical product, however, you must take a few more steps to ensure your shipping process is seamless. To start, take the guesswork out of shipping packages and invest in a shipping solution, like the SendPro C200. With this Pitney Bowes Shipping Solution, you can skip all those post office trips. This all-in-one system allows you to weigh packages and print shipping labels right from your office. You’re also able to track packages once they’re sent. That way, if there are carrier delays, you’ll be able to give your customers a heads up. Pitney Bowes is offering a free, 60-day trial here.
3. Keep the Lines of Communication Open
The last thing you want is for customers to feel used. Unfortunately, that’s just the feeling they get when you send weekly sales emails leading up to a product launch, they purchase and then you never contact them again. Build a relationship with your customers that lasts past the buy button through the use of content marketing. Invite them to join your mailing list, for example, and then send out regular newsletters. Send holiday mailers, advice on how to extend the use of the product and invitations for feedback. Sure, you can follow up with sales emails, but that shouldn’t be the only time your customers hear from you.
Do you delight your customers by extending your service efforts after the sale? Share how in the comments.