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How to improve customer service in your small business

Every business owner knows that in order to succeed for the long term they need to make their customers happy. This is especially true for small businesses that may not have the reach of their larger competition. The way you treat your customers will determine whether or not your small business succeeds and grows or whether it quietly fades away. Savvy small business owners know that they must make the relationship they have with their customers their top priority. It is important to keep in mind that studies have shown that many customers will return to purchase from a business because of the service they received without even considering whether or not they are paying the lowest price.

Small business owners should also realize that up to 80% of their existing sales come from the customers that they already have. This makes treating them well even more important. While you want to be attracting new customers you should never overlook the customers that you already are servicing. There are many other tips that will help you promote better customer service within your small business. Here is what you need to know about how to improve customer service in your small business-
- Know who your customers are-In their excitement to introduce their product or service to the market many small business owners make the mistake of trying to be everything to everyone. This is simply not realistic. You need to have a clear idea of the people who are most likely to purchase from you. This will allow you to correctly market to them and let them know what you can do for them. This is the starting point in developing a relationship that it based on customer service.
- Work on improving the relationship with your existing customers-As a small business owner you should never allow your marketing to take you away from the customers that you already have. You need to make sure that you are developing a relationship with your existing customers. Keep in mind that these are the people who are keeping your door open. You need to make sure that you are offering the type of personal service that will entice them to come back again and again. You want to present yourself as the expert in your field. This will help to develop feelings of trust and credibility from your customers and they will feel loyalty to you when go to make a purchasing decision. However, this should be done with a note of caution. Your attempts to develop a relationship with your customers need to be genuine or they will feel that you are not sincere and move onto another business that will give them the service they need.
- Train everyone who works for you to focus on customer service-Often times a lack of customer service is about poor training rather then being intentional. In order to make sure that your small business is providing the highest level of customer service you need to train everyone who works for you. This training should emphasize that even if an employee does not have direct contact with a customer they are still a part of customer service. When employees know that they need to make customer service a priority the overall level of customer service will go up. Keep in mind however, that this type of training may need to be repeated on a regular basis in order to keep it fresh in everyone's mind. In addition, you as a business owner you should make it a priority to show your staff that you have a hands on approach to customer service, as well.

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