In this video, learn the skills necessary to effectively and quickly establish a relationship with your retail customer service clients. Discover tips on building rapport in 30 seconds or less.
- I was recently in one of my favorite restaurants in San Diego, waiting in line for a burrito. There was a woman standing behind me waiting for her food too. One of the employees making our food said to her, I really like that shade of lipstick on you. The woman behind me said, Oh, thank you so much. And she smiled from ear to ear. Just this simple act of kindness from the employee could have made a difference in that woman's day, or her week. Maybe she left and treated her staff a little nicer that day because she felt good.
Maybe she treated her family a little better because she felt grateful for the compliment. You have the power to set this positive ripple effect in motion, and it all starts with building rapport with your customers. Rapport is building a relationship through a feeling of commonality and familiarity that puts you at ease. It's what you have with your friends, your family, certain coworkers, and hopefully, your customers. Let's talk about a few ways you can build rapport.
The first way is to greet every customer with a warm smile. This lets the customer know that their experience will be a positive one, with a friendly and helpful person. It sets the stage for your customer to feel heard, understood, and cared for. And smiles are contagious, aren't they? When you smile at someone, their natural instinct is to smile back. This makes the interaction more enjoyable for you too. The second way to build rapport is to make eye contact with the customer.
That shows you're present and focused on them. This helps you be more attentive to their needs, and understand what they're looking for. It also shows the customer that you're professional, interested, and ready to serve. Third, make a comment or compliment to your customer. For example, if your customer is wearing a necklace that you like, you might say to them, I really like your necklace. And who doesn't like a compliment? You can also comment on general things happening in the world, or your community.
For example, you might say something about the weather. Wow, it's really hot today. Or you may comment on local sports teams, or on their clothing. If someone's wearing a sweatshirt with the school you went to, or are familiar with, bring it up in the conversation. You're building rapport with that person, and making them feel comfortable, relaxed, and at ease with you. You're building a relationship where the experiece for the customer is an enjoyable one, and they will continue to come back, and tell their friends and family to visit you, or leave you a five star online review.
And it can be a lot of fun for you too, when you really get to know your customers. Think of a time when someone gave you a sincere compliment. How did you feel? How did you treat others afterwards? When was the last time you gave a sincere compliment to someone? What was their reaction? Have fun with this and see how you can use compliments in your work and life today.
In this course, learn techniques to deal with upset customers, and show empathy with active listening. Instructor and customer service expert David Brownlee—the author of Rock Star Customer Service—also provides etiquette tips to ensure quality service at every point of interaction: from the moment customers walk in the door to keeping them happy while they're on hold.
- Why it matters to deliver good service
- Creating a positive attitude
- Delivering a good first impression
- Dealing with upset customers
- How to listen
- Retail etiquette, including phone etiquette