I like to be treated well as a customer. You are probably the same. The level of service expected is not actually written down and can be slightly subjective from one person to another. Exceptional to one person may be OK to another. But a level is expected all the same. Have you ever had the feeling after you have bought something that maybe you haven't made the right choice? Maybe the purchase wasn't right for you after all. Well according to studies this is the most critical period for a sale and the customer's perception of service.
The post purchase experience can be critical, in the type of service people feel they received and the lightly hood of them being a returning customer. How do you help your customers to feel they have made the right decision, to help to develop a long-term relationship?
Now imagine for instance you have just been for a lovely meal in a nice restaurant. The food was delicious, as was the service. You didn’t have to wait too long, but neither were you rushed. You are now ready to go, you just need to pay. You wait for the bill, it doesn’t arrive. You chat a bit more and try to catch the waiter’s attention, but have no luck. You just have to wait. Eventually, after 20 minutes you receive the bill, by which time all you can remember about the meal, is the long wait. The lovely food does not seem as nice and you may not go back. You are unlikely to leave a tip. If anyone asks you will probably say, the food is good, but....
Now research has shown if a waiter/waitress were to have brought the bill promptly when asked and brought some mints or a small treat and tell you that they had brought them for you, after the bill was paid. The lightly hood and tip amount will be increased by 23%. The lightly hood of a return visit is also increased.
Now how is this related to other businesses? You are probably not looking for tips. Well, many businesses give great service, but as soon as the bill has been paid customers do not hear from the company again. This can leave the customer feeling a little deflated. They have gone through a long process of parting with their hard earned money and now you have it, you have lost interest in them. A bit like not being asked on another date. You have probably invested a lot of time and effort getting the sale in the first place. So why leave them buying from you again, to chance.
Attention to detail can be small things, that make a huge difference. Make sure you keep clients engaged and interested in you and your business. They will then not feel like they have been dumped after a sale and will be far more lightly to buy from you in the future. This will be far cheaper than trying to find brand new customers for each sale.
There are many ways you can help customers after a purchase:
- A Branded or personalised product, either something that is useful or edible, like the restaurant mints
- Advice which helps the client get the most out of their new product
- Advice on how to care for the product
So how are you going to add value to the after sales experience of your clients? If mints work for a restaurant, then whatever kind of business you are in, there will be something for your clients.
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