You know how the saying goes – fill in the blank with the most important rock-bottom basic measure of success in your field. And when it comes to customer retention strategies , that means that you’re only as good as your customer’s most recent contact with your store.
It’s true – if you’re a typical customer, your most recent experience with a store is likely to leave the strongest and the most vivid impression in your mind. So if you’re a store owner or manager, you have to keep up with what your customers are experiencing now. You can’t count on what your customers were saying about your store two years ago, two months ago, or even two weeks ago still being the whole story.
The only way that you know how your customers feel about your store is by knowing what they are experiencing now, and what they are saying about it now.
Think of it this way:
For a customer who has only come into your store a few times, or who only comes in occasionally, just one bad experience – one rude or inattentive clerk, one mishandled product complaint or refund, one unhelpful customer-service person – can be enough to wipe out any previous good experiences and good impressions. And it can be enough to keep that customer from coming back – ever. Nothing that you did in the past for that customer will even matter.
You can’t take steady customers for granted, either. A long-time repeat customer may accept minor problems and inconveniences without becoming any less loyal to your store, but an accumulation of not-so-minor incidents can be enough to weaken any customer’s loyalty – and a serious, badly-handled major incident on top of that can turn even the most loyal customer into a former customer.And when it comes to brand-new customers, the first encounter with your store and your staff may also be the last encounter – you really only have one chance to put any kind of customer relation management to work.
So what do you do?
You make measuring customer satisfaction by means of professional survey-taking and analysis services such as Compechek into a regular part of your business, just as much as opening the store in the morning, keeping regular track of your inventory. That gives you a chance to detect and take care of small problems before they become large, and to make sure that for each of your customers, the most current experience with your store is also the best experience.
If you would like to know more about how the ASK LISTEN RETAIN System or how it can help create customer retention and loyalty, please contact us.