This is the time of year when those fledgling New Year’s resolutions are put to the test. The holiday momentum is starting to wear off, and the realities of day-to-day life are settling back in. One of the reasons resolutions often fail is that people tend to overreach. If your daily life has been sedentary for years, the chances that you’re really going to start getting up at 5am and running 10 miles before work are pretty slim. The key to success for most people is to start with a realistic goal that you can achieve, that fits into the life you already lead.
Today’s article is a guest post from Greg Ciotti of Help Scout.
Great customer support should always be available, even when you are not.
In other words, sometimes the best thing you can do for your customers is to simply get out of the way.
This is a trend we’ve seen take over in 2013, and I’m confident that next year will see continuing adoption and recognition of the sincere usefulness of self-service.
Why? So many aspects of business and commerce are moving online, and with this 24-hour customer base (that spans the world over), it’s impossible for small companies to have live options for support all the time.
Earlier this week we talked about which factors people use to gauge their success as a small business owner. Today we’re going to look at a great to measure the success of the business itself. It’s called the Net Promoter Score (NPS).
If you’ve not heard of it before, the NPS of a business is measured with one simple question posed to its customers: “how likely would you be to recommend this business to a friend or colleague?” The respondents’ answers fall on a scale of 1 to 10, and are then grouped into 3 categories – Promoters (9-10), Passives (7-8), and Detractors (6 or below). To make it simple, you disregard the Passives, and then subtract the percentage of Detractors from the percentage of Promoters, and that number is your NPS. Sometimes expressed as a percentage, sometimes as a score.
As the year comes to an end, how do you think your small business (and you as a business owner) fared? The answer will be different for everyone, and the criteria the answer is based on will be different as well.
Depending on your goals and priorities, “success” may mean something else for you than it does for the shop owner down the street. Inc. recently did a roundup of some really interesting studies on the subject, one of which showed the different ways the small business owners who were surveyed measure their success. Where do you fit on this graph?
Today’s article is a guest post from Webs’ Search Marketing Specialist, Collin Tate.
Originally this post was going to be about my experiences with Zappos, how awesome they are and how businesses both large and small should aspire to completely own customer service the way that Zappos does. Instead, I’m going to chat about an unexpected hero, and how going above and beyond typical customer service creates bonds and develops customer loyalty.
If you’ve ever owned a computer, you know how frustrating it is when things stop working. There’s little worse than when you have an accidental drop, you get a virus, when hardware fails or kids or pets get their little hands or paws on your computer. If you’re like me, you first try to troubleshoot the issue alone. When that doesn’t work, you call a family member or friend who knows their way around computers, hoping that they can fix your problem, all the while praying that you don’t have to call tech support.
Today’s article is a guest post from legal blogger Matt Faustman.
Every year, MSN Money surveys adults about the quality of customer service at 150 of the best-known companies across the country and in 15 industries to find the MSN Money Customer Service Hall of Shame winners. The survey is now in its seventh year and the year-over-year industries that have acquired a bad rap for poor customer service remain the same. In the end, we dislike the banks, the cable television providers, and the credit card companies the most.
How often do you wonder what your customers think of you?
You’ve probably thought: “If only I could read their minds, I could deliver the exact product or service they want, when they want it, at a price that makes them happy and makes me money!” Unfortunately, this kind of psychic ability is usually reserved for TV, the movies, or Miss Cleo.
Instead of channeling your inner Mentalist, why not just ask your customers what they like or don’t like about you?
Step 1: Figure out what you want to learn from your customer
Perhaps you’ve noticed that a certain type of product or service you offer isn’t selling as well as it used to and you want to find out why.
What is CRM? It stands for Customer Relationship Management, and it’s key to the success of your small business. The technical definition?
“Customer relationship management (CRM) is a model for managing a company’s interactions with current and future customers. It involves using technology to organize, automate, and synchronize sales, marketing, customer service, and technical support.” (Wikipedia)
Today’s article is a guest post from Gregory Ciotti of Help Scout.
As you well know, having lackluster customer service is a surefire way to get passed over by the demanding customer of today.
The question then becomes, what actually makes customer service truly memorable?
Each experience is different from the next, but there are some iron-clad rules of great service that every support team should put in place.
Below, I’ll outline 8 proven laws of outstanding support that your company should apply today.
Ah, procrastination. The mortal enemy of the small business owner. With so many things to do, and hats to wear, and so little time for it all, entrepreneurs really need to be on top of their game to make it work. And for some lucky (or very disciplined) individuals, this kind of organization and focus comes naturally.
Then, there are the rest of us. Before anyone gets upset, nobody is saying that procrastinators are necessarily less productive, intelligent, or hardworking. It just takes a lot more energy for us to settle in and focus on the task at hand. We can be just as reliable about meeting deadlines as non-procrastinators — we are just up a lot later the night before.