Peak season is the busiest time of year for sellers. That’s undeniable. Some sellers can get carried away and put all their focus on the key players of their business during peak season, like inventory quantities or the design of their website. While these are important aspects, it’s equally as important to shift the focus on great customer service.
You can have as much inventory as you want, but if you don’t have the people there to pick up the pieces when something goes wrong, you’re not making a repeat sale. Here’s a few reasons why your customers matter most during peak season and how to improve customer service.
Improve Customer Service
Creating a complete customer experience involves several components. This could include an email campaign that creates customer engagement, website development ready to handle glitches, and great photos to display your products. Each component has to work together to provide a seamless shopping experience.
In order to produce these components, you need to have a customer service team in place to handle any and all questions. If a customer doesn’t receive the correct discount code from an email offer, you need to have someone in place to answer their questions. If someone’s order doesn’t ship on time, a customer service representative needs to be on standby. An in-house customer service team is an added bonus for angry customers, especially if they’re local.
Great customer service can save any situation. Don’t drop the ball on this one.
[This data from App Institute shows that Black Friday shopping is an all-day experience, further proving the need for great customer service around the clock.]
Every little detail counts when designing a customer’s shopping experience. In fact, the little details just may be the thing that keeps them coming back. In order to create customer loyalty, you’ve gotta focus on little details to the big picture.
For example, if they opt-in to an email newsletter, address the email to them personally, instead of a generic “Hello.” Or on a larger scale, make return shipping free. If you can make a customer feel important and appreciated from the first purchase, they’re sure to become a loyal client to your product or brand.
This will pay off, especially during peak season when you want your numbers to be at their highest for the year.
The next step after engaging customer loyalty is getting those customers to take time out of their day and write a nice little (or long) review. In today’s world of constant interaction, online reviews have become the new way to tell others about your experience in an instant. But what makes online reviews even more valuable is their ability to influence the next customer’s buying decision.
People are looking for a real person’s opinion of a product or experience over what the brand or business wants you to believe. People trust other people. According to a Pew Research Center Study, half of adults under 50 routinely check online reviews before buying new items.
In order to pull this off, you’ve gotta give a great customer experience from start to finish (which includes excellent customer service). You have to make them want to write a great review.
One great review can change the minds of a few others, and before you know it, your sales are through the roof during peak season.
The natural step after a great online experience and review is acquiring new customers from those initiatives. Today, people go online to read reviews before purchasing anything, so you need to make sure they’re positive more than negative. If you’re experiencing negative reviews, address the person and find a way to mitigate their complaint. It’s especially important to clean up reviews before the peak season rush. If others can see that you tried to solve a problem, they’re still likely to buy from you since your efforts to put the customer first are visible.
When all of these positive efforts and reviews are left before a potential customer even gets into your site, you’re already off to a great start. You’re guaranteed to see an increase in sales as your positive reviews gather. And if you happen to steal a competitor’s customer, it’s just icing on the cake.
Peak season is right now. It’s not the time to mess up your relationships with customers and potential customers. The customer is king and you have to do everything you can to make them feel important. Provide them with a unique experience that will influence them to leave a great review, and give them the kind of customer service they will brag about to their friends.