It does not matter if your company has been around for decades or just a few weeks – if you do not treat your customers right, you will not be in business too much longer. No matter what the business, customer service is key, and that starts with not chasing those would-be buyers away. Unfortunately, many common business practices end up backfiring, sending customers fleeing instead of getting them to buy.
Here are 10 common mistakes business owners make, and how to fix them.
- Pop-up ads. You hate pop-up ads when you surf the web, so why are you foisting them on your customers. Pop-up ads send customers fleeing, so look for other ways to get their attention.
- Hard-to-find contact information. If would-be buyers have questions, they deserve answers right away. Hiding your contact information and not providing multiple channels is a common mistake businesses make, and one of the most easily avoided.
- Difficult website navigation. The company website is the first place customers look, and its quality (or lack of quality) will have a direct impact on your bottom line. Nothing chases visitors away faster than a website that is confusing or hard to navigate.
- Hiring the wrong people. The employees you hire will be the face of your business, so make sure that image is a great one. A single bad hire can sink your customer service, so hire carefully and screen applicants thoroughly.
- Attracting new customers at the expense of existing ones. Every business wants to attract new customers, but offering perks and incentives to newbies at the expense of existing buyers is a huge mistake. A one-time incentive is fine for attracting new customers, but you need to treat your existing customers just as well.
- Failing to follow up. Every abandoned shopping cart costs your company money and failing to follow-up is a lost opportunity. Be sure to follow-up with your customers and would-be customers, giving them a reason to come back.
- Employing hard sell tactics. If you try too hard to sell your products and services, you could end up chasing would-be buyers away. If you want to be successful, you need to find the sweet spot, avoiding the hard sell, but still valuing your customers.
- Taking your customers for granted. At the end of the day, it is your customers who keep the lights on and keep your employees paid. Failing to acknowledge that simple fact could prove extremely costly for your company.
- Restricting your customer service reps. Your customer service staff is the front-line for your business, so give them the tools they need to solve problems and keep buyers happy.
- Skimping on training. Your employees need the right training, so give them what they need. Skimping on training will have a negative impact on customer service and your bottom line.
If you want your business to be successful, you need to do two things; serve your existing customers and attract new ones. Both can be hard, but self-sabotage will only make the task more difficult.
Many companies do not realize that they are chasing would-be customers away while trying to attract them, but the results are still the same. No business owner would intentionally chase customers away, yet many common business practices do just that. If you are making any of the 10 mistakes listed above, it is time to change your ways and turn things around.