One of the most important rules in customer service is to exceed customer expectation. Imagine yourself picking up a book and being attracted by its cover. You have a certain kind of expectation on the book and yet when you read the first few pages, it is apparent that your expectation is not met. What will you do with the book? Put it back to the shelf, and move on.
The same is true with customer service. When a potential customer walks into your shop, based on your first few minutes in giving services, he or she will have a set of expectations. Fall short on these, and the customer will try to find a better service. Meet these expectations, and you will have a customer.
That said, meeting one’s expectations is usually not enough. When expectations are met, the customer is left with moderate satisfaction. He or she will not necessarily praise your products or services, and come back to have a repeated purchase. The customer might even go to other brands to try if whether they can have greener pastures.
Thus in business, what you want to do is to exceed your customer’s expectations.
How to exceed customer expectation
While meeting expectation is ordinary, exceeding expectation is not. It requires extra effort from your side.
So what does it take to exceed your customers’ expectations? It may include never being late to appointments. It may include being ready with materials before being asked. It may include delivering what is promised, preferably before the promised time.
Here are some important points to note:
1. Always overdeliver
Customers love it when we go the extra mile. If you promise that a certain product is going to be shipped in seven days, if you manage to beat the odds and get it shipped in four instead, your customers will appreciate it as many companies do not follow up after 10 days instead.
2. Put your feet in your customers’ shoes
To exceed expectations, always think of the circumstances from their point of view. If you are a manager of a hotel, perhaps you would like to give a box of chocolate on every customer’s third visit. People love surprises and gifts, and your customers do too.
3. Set your pricing well
Price is the top indicator of setting a customer’s expectation. If a service is priced highly, he or she will demand greater things from this service compared to the low-cost ones. Thus, always put extra attention in pricing your products and services to ensure for best value for price offered.
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