5 Ways to Provide Exceptional Customer Service

Most businesses have a lot of competition in the marketplace. So, many business owners are left wondering how they can compete. One of the best ways to stand out is through exceptional customer service. When you treat your customers well you earn their respect and loyalty, a great basis for an ongoing business relationship. 5 areas where you can achieve great customer service are:

Timely Response
If someone emails or calls you, respond to them within 12-24 hours. If you can't give them a comprehensive answer right away, that's fine, just let them know when you can. There is nothing worse than emailing or leaving a voicemail and then wondering days later whether it was received - clients get impatient and wonder if this is indicative of your overall work style.

Follow Up
If you say you are going to do something, do it. The best way to form a relationship is by building trust through fulfilling promises. If you meet someone and promise to email them about something, make sure you do so. If you fail to follow up, again, people will doubt your overall capabilities.

Deadlines
If you can't meet a deadline, then communicate that, don't just disappear and hope your client won't notice. Small business owners sometimes find it very difficult to meet deadlines because of the variety of demands on their time. Clients will usually understand, as long as you let them know ahead of time and set a new deadline that you do meet.

Be Personal
When you speak with someone, or communicate by email or letter, use the person's name. By using the person's name you show them they have your full attention, you know who they are, and you are speaking directly to them. An email with the recipient's name mentioned in the body of the email shows the email is intended just for them, rather than being another generic response.

Be Friendly
It is so much easier to deal with someone who is friendly than someone who seems unhappy. When you take the time to be friendly with your clients (still maintaining a professional line) you develop a relationship where you both enjoy working together. Make sure you always have a smile for people, in person and over the phone, and you will instantly improve your rapport with them.

When you follow the above steps, other aspects of great customer service will also come naturally, like really listening to your customers and exceeding their expectations. Approach your clients with a positive, respectful attitude and you will enjoy great business relationships.

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