As you ramp up for 2016, make sure you have everything in place to give your customers the best experience and keep them coming back each year!

If you downplay the importance of customer service, you cut off the most meaningful connection you have to your patrons. This is one area a lot of people weigh the most heavily when choosing a company, so you want to be sure you’re doing everything right. Here is your 2016 checklist for stellar customer service:

  1. Keep the phone. Yes, people spend a lot of time online, and the contact forms are very convenient. However, over 80% of people prefer to speak with an actual person when dealing with customer service (CS) issues. This opens the door for a completely personalized experience where tone is heard and understood. Apologies and the desire to help sound sincere, and people walk away from a CS experience on the phone much happier than online. Whether you hire a call center or have in-house staff, keep that number available for your customers!
  1. Engage in social media. Yes, we just told you that people want to talk on the phone, and now we’re telling you they want to be online. You need to do both. Social media is a vehicle for complaints where a swift response is necessary. If you don’t reply within 24 hours to something posted online, you can kiss your reputation and sincerity good-bye. Make sure you have a savvy person or team keeping your social media fresh and updated.
  1. Use live chat. You may see the pattern here – we want you to cover your bases so that no matter how a customer prefers to get in touch with you, it’s always easy. The “instant message” channel of customer service allows people to pop in for a quick question and then get on with their lives. No hold time, no waiting for an email or comment – live chat is an instantly gratifying means of communication.
  1. Anticipate their needs. It’s important to know what the customer needs before he or she does, so understand the pain points. Whether this is an extremely thorough FAQ, a follow-up call/email, or quick tips, you can find fairly simple ways to make your customers’ lives easier, and they’ll thank you for it.
  1. Show your appreciation. There are so many ways to show appreciation to customers, be they new or long-time. Giving back portions of your proceeds helps on a larger scale, while offering incentives and discounts helps on a more individual level. Think about what is important to your customers and create a great way to say, “Thank you for choosing us!”

Don’t forget that how your brick and mortar looks is a form of customer service, too. Keep your store clean and your tags in great condition. Quality price tag holders, both for shelf and hanging, are a part of your overall presentation. Contact Vinyl Art to order the best for your store:  800-569-1304;