by Christophe Primault
Published on 27 January 2012
In continuation to our article about the age of the customer, explaining why small businesses need to be customer obsessed, we stumbled upon a great article from our cloud consultants partners VM-Associates.
They pick on the example of luxury stores to explain how small businesses can learn from customer support best practices and they refer to online customer support software as a way to make customer service accessible to any company.
Here is the opening question: When you go shopping in a luxury store, why do you choose one and not the other?
Their guess: your interpersonal relationships and history with the people behind the stores.
Have a solution for your customer problems
This principle can be applied to any business model: happy customers are the backbone of a successful company, and the best way to keep your clientele happy is through responsive, eager, and welcoming relationships. Yes, we're talking about customer service.
If your customer has a problem, you have a solution. If your customer has a question, you have an answer. The customer owns the store.
Of course, many businesses don't have the luxury of the grocery store. They don't have staff to train to smile: relationships are managed virtually. That's tough.
To make things worse, traditional online customer service solutions have been geared toward enterprise-level companies, with huge CSR departments. That's not conducive to good customer service for small businesses.
Customer service for everyone
Luckily, that's all changing. New user-friendly SaaS applications are making customer service accessible to everyone who needs it, at affordable costs. VM-Associates have developed a partnership with Zendesk, a leader in cloud-based customer service and help desk applications, and they are ecstatic about it.
They use Zendesk internally, they've setup dozens of clients with Zendesk solutions, and they're happy to see 100% positive feedback. They qualify it as "good stuff".
VM-Associates pride themselves in being accessible to their clients and know that without happy customers their business would crumble. Zendesk helps them deliver customer service as though they know their customers in a neighborhood type way.
There are many other online customer support software applications, but whatever the solution you use, happy customers equals prosperous business.
If you haven't already, think through your current support system and consider whether you can't do better.
Cause you probably can!
Check different help desk applications with reviews and comparison tools
This post has been written in collaboration with Daniel at VM-Associates .
Picture courtesy of Flickr user by RW PhotoBug