86% of consumers are willing to pay more for a better customer experience. Every interaction counts when you’re trying to provide your customers with the best possible journey through working with your business. Did you know that almost half of all consumers in the US have stopped working with a business because of one negative experience? The craziest part about that is that losing customers over a negative interaction is completely avoidable through properly managing the follow-up. Here are some of the most common customer interaction challenges that small businesses today are faced with, and how to better work through them:
Dealing with Angry Customers
Every business will, at some point, have to deal with angry customers. Whether the issue is truly the fault of your business or not, the way you handle a customer’s anger will be what determines if they’re going to use your business again. The most important thing a business can do is connect with the angry customer and try to work through the problems. One of the biggest issues customers have with businesses isn’t necessarily the negative experience itself, but the lack of interaction following their feedback. The best way to deal with an angry customer is the same way you’d respond to a happy one. Stay in touch, listen and understand their point of view, and do the best you can to help them with their concerns.
We’ve all had an experience with a business where we received one message and then heard something entirely different later on, right? Whether it’s an item’s price being mis-marked in a store or a quote that changes after the job is done, it’s a frustrating experience for the consumer. However, businesses can work to streamline their messaging to avoid these types of challenging interactions. Streamline your business’s messaging by keeping content consistent on all social platforms, and provide consumers with several options for connecting with you: phone calls, text messages, webchat, social media messaging, etc.
One of the most common customer interaction challenges is also one of the most avoidable. Know your messaging, your processes and your customer service protocols, be available on multiple platforms for your customers to reach you, and be sure your employees are on the same page.
Lack of Engagement
Engaging with your customers is the number one way to retain them. Lack of engagement is the number one way to lose your customers to the competitors. We know that retaining customers is 5 times more profitable for a business than obtaining new customers. However, many businesses, especially small businesses, face the common challenge of neglecting to interact with their customers between services. If your customers don’t hear from you, you won’t hear from them. Avoid this common and destructive approach to customer engagement, or the lack thereof:
- Store customer contact information in a secure online platform.
- Use that contact information to regularly engage with your customers.
- Send customers messaging that is relevant, interesting and valuable to them based on previous purchases from your business.
- Reach your customers in the way that is best for them: email, text or social media.
- Understand and respond to your customers’ needs in every engagement you send.
There are many challenges that arise when it comes to customer interaction. Fortunately, businesses are great at adapting, evolving and innovating. If your business is struggling with customer interaction challenges, let one of our experts walk you through the process of improving your customer relationships and strengthening your communication with them.
For more insights on marketing strategy that actually works for small business, subscribe to the FreshLime Newsletter here. Connect with Jay Bean, Founder of FreshLime and Small Business Marketing Expert on LinkedIn and Twitter. And last of all, if any of these tips have helped you or if you have anything to add please comment below. We’d love to hear from you!