Customers are the backbone of most businesses. However, every single day in every business in America, customers are walking away. Companies spend a lot of time and money securing new customers but not as much effort is spent on retaining them. Keeping a customer needs to be a team effort with a great focus on customer service.
Wikipedia defines customer service as, “… the provision of service to customers before, during and after a purchase. The perception of success of such interactions is dependent on employees “who can adjust themselves to the personality of the guest”’ (Wikipedia). Customers want to be listened to and have a deep-rooted desire to be understood and accommodated, making customer service undeniably important. Throughout the interaction, customers gain information on the company’s mission, values, brand, etc. and informative customer service reflects positively on the company in the long run.
Customer service is a major means of retaining existing customers. When considering the cost of customer acquisition, retaining an existing customer through stellar customer service is significantly more cost-effective; particularly in the logistics industry where maintenance of long-term relationships can be critical to ensuring positive profit margins over long periods of time. Additionally, customer service allows for new opportunities for growth in the form of referrals.
So how does a company ensure they have stellar customer service? Patience, empathy, adaptability, and consistency are undeniably important in the execution and maintenance of good customer service. Individuals must be able to make judgment calls on the correct way to respond to situations, rather than sticking to a plan and refusing to stray. At the end of the day, you are serving your customers, and every action is a direct representation of the company which you work for; being personal, available at your customer’s convenience, being engaged in every conversation, and allowing for both positive and negative feedback are just several ways to take steps towards improving your customer service.
Individuals who work in sales and customer service must ultimately be able to maintain positive attitudes, be understanding and adaptive to changes in customer needs and desires in order to minimize costs, ensure profitable margins, and retain existing customers. Good customer service is oftentimes overlooked but is becoming increasingly important in the logistics industry as an indicator of a company’s professionalism, brand, mission, and identity.