Learn five crucial steps to delivering excellent customer service with every customer, every time, regardless of what is going on around you.
- When I worked in the men's department at a clothing store, it was imperative that we deliver a top-notch retail customer experience. The brand had built a reputation on delivering excellent customer service. I came up with an acronym to help you remember the six key elements to provide a top-notch retail customer experience. It's SECOND, because it only takes a second to make your customers feel heard, understood, and cared for. The S stands for smile.
When you welcome any customer into your store, or jump on the phone, smile. This sets the tone for that interaction, telling the customer that you're working with that it will be a pleasurable experience to work with you. The E stands for eye contact. When you make eye contact with your customers, you're showing them that you're attentive and that you're ready to listen and serve them. The C stands for compliment. When you compliment your customers, they feel good. It makes their buying experience more enjoyable and they're more likely to come back, and tell everyone they know to do the same.
The O stands for occurrence. When you interact with your customers, you're building a relationship with them. Mention an occurrence in the news, a local event, or even comment on the weather. The N stands for nice. As you're helping your customers, be nice, even if you have an upset or difficult customer. Some customers will get stuck in a negative state of mind while you're helping them. So no matter what you do, in those rare cases, simply shrug it off. Don't take it personally, and enjoy the next customer that's friendly to you.
The D stands for depart. When the interaction has come to a natural end, the customer's bought a product or it's simply time for them to leave, thank them for coming in, and then invite them back. When you create this inviting environment for your customers, they will come back and spend more money with you, and your business. They'll bring your friends and family and leave you five-star reviews online. What that means to you is more opportunity for promotions, acknowledgement, and pay raises.