If I asked you, would you say …?
- Lack of cash flow?
- Lack of new leads?
- Lack of new customers?
- Lack of sales?
- Lack of marketing?
- Too much competition?
These things contribute but I believe they are expressions of a much larger and sometimes hidden problem …
The #1 Business Killer is …
Inconsistent Customer Service!
Think about it! You started your business because you are great at what you do. You gain a few customers through your network of contacts; you deliver a great service and your clients love it and you. They tell their friends and colleagues, and you get busier, which is great but then you become really busy and you put on more staff to help you.
Things are going great, but then sales start to decline, budgets/quotas aren’t being met. Your regular customers aren’t so regular anymore; they are going to your competition. You start freaking out because you now have payroll and more expenses to cover. You start to focus almost entirely on getting more customers to cover expenses, instead of focusing on your great service or product – you have staff to do that. But nothing seems to change, except you work harder and longer … It becomes a vicious cycle that sneaks up on you.
One instance of inconsistent customer experience that sticks in my mind, even today …
When I started my first job, I use to go to a hair salon near work. The salon had a great reputation and was recommended by a number of my friends. The guy who cut my hair was nice, the cut was great and the service was warm and friendly – so I became a loyal customer. After about 5 years that same guy went on to buy the business and things started to change. He still cut my hair well, but staff turnover started increasing and when it came time for a junior to wash my hair I was never sure from one visit to the next whether I would receive a relaxing experience or a neck adjustment. To top things off, the price I paid depended on who was serving me on the day. The difference from one visit to the next could be as much as $50 up or down. It was ridiculous!
Did I offer feedback? For sure! Did things change? Sadly, no!
The inconsistent service eroded my like and trust factors and I didn’t need the added stress each visit caused. So, I went elsewhere.
Inconsistent Customer Service can take many forms – missed deadlines, services being missed, broken promises, lack of communication, not responding to customer questions, treating your customer like a number instead of an individual. You don’t have to look too hard to find it as most businesses suffer from it.
Don’t forget it’s the little things done consistently well that mean the most to your customers; not the grand sweeping gestures done occasionally.
Many business owners’ efforts to address these issues are like putting a band-aid on a surgical wound!
They waste time and money focusing all their efforts on getting new customers to increase their cash flow but provide inconsistent customer service which eventually causes the customer to leave anyway. It’s a vicious cycle!
Here’s the thing …
Can you guarantee your customers receive the same level of service every time they interact with your business?
Is their experience the same no matter who they speak to on the day?
If you answered “No” or “Not sure” to either question you need to make some changes.
The good news is, it’s fixable!
The experience your customer receives is entirely up to you! It doesn’t matter what that experience looks like! It doesn’t have to be “perfect” but it needs to be CONSISTENT!
By ensuring your customer experience is consistent every single time – many of the other indicators will take care of themselves.
Need some help to identify how to make your customer service consistent?
Contact us: +61 7 3040 8583, Email