Saturday, January 17, 2009

Customer Service Translates into Success

customer service seems to be the one constant that every expert urges businesses -- retailers included -- to improve upon.

This week, The DiJulius Group released this gem: "Companies that execute at a higher level of customer service have a healthier corporate culture, lower employee turnover, higher customer retention, increased average ticket sales, higher prices, more referrals and ultimately make price less relevant."

John DiJulius, who bills himself as the authority on world-class customer service, says that customer service is at such an all-time low that if the experience is not horrible, consumers are relieved.

Does this sound like your store? I hope not. Even if it doesn't, perhaps DiJulius has a valuable message that can help you through 2009.

What is a customer's ROH (return on hassle), he asks. Additional time driving to make a return or sorting through voice-operated customer service menus adds unnecessary stress, which DiJulius says consumers are rapidly pinning to brands.

They realize, according to DiJulius, that it would have been cheaper to pay more for something and get it right the first time.

Companies that adhere to the philosophy that low prices mean they need not be concerned with customer service are discovering, he says, that this strategy does not translate into a customer following.

Why not challenge your employees to suggest ideas about how you can improve customer service at your store?


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