When you run a business, it’s easy to get caught up in the products and services you offer, as those play the biggest role in your company’s success. But there’s more to success than the quality of your product. Customer relations also play a huge role in whether your business does well or fails.
Your business’s customer relations encompass everything from the beginning of their interactions with you throughout the purchase process and beyond. It’s essentially how you and your employees treat customers, and there are three significant reasons why you should make it a priority.
Perhaps the most effective way to increase profits is to improve customer retention. The fact is that the easiest person to sell to is someone who you’ve already sold to before. They don’t need to be convinced to try your products, because they’ve made that decision in the past. To accomplish this, you need to make the customer experience so great with your business that customers want to keep coming back.
Customer relations isn’t the only factor that’s important when it comes to improving customer retention, but it’s very important. People want to shop at businesses that provide a topnotch experience from start to finish. They want to feel appreciated. And with all the competition that’s out there, if your business doesn’t make customers feel appreciated, they’ll just shop around and find one that does.
Reputation is a huge concern for any business. Among small businesses, 85 percent get customers through good word of mouth, and large corporations also acquire many customers through their reputations.
Look on any business review site and you’ll see that many reviewers focus quite a bit on customer relations. A great experience is often the difference between a three-star review and a five-star review. Your business must go that extra mile to build and maintain a strong reputation.
The thing to remember regarding your business’s reputation is that it takes many positive interactions with customers to build it but only one negative interaction to ruin it. With the world being more connected than ever, it doesn’t take long for word of a bad experience to spread. One negative experience posted on Yelp, Facebook, Twitter or another site could have a lasting impact on your brand. That’s why customer relations are always important to your business, because even one mistake can cause major repercussions.
We already covered how it’s much easier to sell to existing customers than it is to sell to someone new. It’s also easier to sell to someone when they’ve been referred to you by an existing customer. Getting customer referrals can be one of your best weapons in building your customer base.
There are plenty of tactics you can use to boost referral traffic, such as offering discounts to customers who send a friend your way. But it all starts with your customer relations. If your customer relations are poor, then no one will send you referrals. When you treat customers right, it can make all the difference. They’ll have no problem recommending you to their friends, family members and acquaintances.
With customer relations, it’s important to understand that your business and its employees are never just interacting with one customer. They’re interacting with that customer, everybody that customer knows and everybody that customer could reach through online channels.
Whether this is good or bad for your business depends on your customer relations. If a customer feels like they’ve been treated poorly, it can create a ripple effect that damages relations with other customers and potential customers. When you treat customers well and make them happy, you can get positive results for your business.
by: Kevin Faber