Why the Best Customer Service Often Starts Online

By on December 26, 2014 | Topics: Operations

Fifteen years ago, if you wanted to know how late a store was open you would grab the phone book, look up its number, and then ask the clerk who picked up the phone.  While there are still a few customers who do things this way today, it is much more likely that someone will get their smartphone out to find out what time your business closes.

That example is just the tip of the iceberg. You never know when a customer might be looking for your business if they realize they need a product or service that you offer. Once they land on your website, you have a chance to give them the best customer service online. Is your site going to have them rushing to your store to get what they need, or drive them away to one of your competitors?

A Website is An Extension of Your Store

Have you ever logged onto a website, just to find that you left right away because it looked old and was hard to navigate? Chances are you have, even if you do not remember it. Now, imagine driving by a store or restaurant that was dirty on the outside, looked rundown, and one of the letters was missing from the sign.  Would you go into that place if you have never been there before?  Most likely not.  Even if that business had an amazing interior, businesses get judged by their cover. The same concept applies to a website. You can provide the best customer service online by having a clean and easy-to-use website. If someone has a good online experience, they are likely to expand their familiarity with your brand, either by stopping in your store or restaurant, or maybe even engaging with you on social media.

Why the Details Matter

Cleanliness is essential for a physical business. One way to look at cleanliness is that customers are unlikely to notice a clean store because they just expect it.  What they will notice is a business that is not clean.  That same principle applies to a website, just with the little details. If this blog post was filled with spelling and grammar errors, you would likely have clicked away from the page before you even got this far into the post.  If we did not take the time to make sure that those details were right, what does that say about the actual content?  The little details on your website matter, because they show that you care and are willing to put in the time to make it right.  If you are willing to make things right on your website, my expectation as a consumer is that you will have taken the time to make things right at the physical location as well.  Take the time to keep your website clean and up-to-date, just like you would with your store.  Let it be a tool that helps drive more traffic and more sales for your business.
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