Promoting a small business through excellent customer service

Karen has a new online business selling custom dog collars, matching leashes, and dog accessories. She uses designer-like fabrics at discounted prices so you can, for example purchase a “Gucci inspired” dog collar and matching leash for a fraction of what you would pay in Italy.

When you have a small online business, you need to promote sales which will in turn increase income, but when you are in competition with huge stores, just how do you set yourself apart? We know that customers are loyal when they have positive experiences, and a good rapport with those customers are an integral part of developing one’s new business. Each successful sale is a new opportunity for a new client, so each sale presents a new opportunity for the future.

We need to train ourselves and our staff how to communicate effectively either by email or telephone. We need to listen. In this particular example, even though pet collar sizes are clearly described and  measured on the website, customers still call or email with questions. Sometimes a customer will request a designer-like fabric not offered. Here’s where Karen has the opportunity to increase her business with a customer service approach not offered by her larger competitors; Karen can customize her products. She can purchase new fabrics and increase her line as her demand for new products increase.

It’s also important to keep communication lines open, and emails need to be kept short when clients write in for more information. This is not the time to make a sales pitch; we want the potential customer to know we care about our product and stay within the parameters of information – not selling more stock. The same philosophy should apply with telephone communication. Customers are most likely calling in for additional information; we need to know how to say it as well as what to say. The manner of speaking on the telephone can turn someone on or off in the first few moments. We need to be good listeners and ask the right questions so as to promote the new customer’s confidence. If a customer reaches out for help, now is the time to make that extra effort.

When promoting a small business, rewards and incentives build future relationships. Discounts, promotions and free services motivate customers to try new businesses and new ideas. If a new business can fulfill expectations, build a confident and friendly rapport, and show the transparency and honesty needed in today’s intense competition, they are most likely to succeed.

photo credit: hinagiku

One Response to “Promoting a small business through excellent customer service”

  1. Local SEO said:

    Aug 06, 11 at 2:20 pm

    Thanks . Interesting article. In the current climate where even governments can pay their billsit is important for business owners to take advantage of every opportunity . The net and mobile is where its at right now.