Three Business Lessons: Checking Your Receipts, The Importance of Customer Service, And Managing Your Business Systems

“The receipts were communications that we were good to go, and that I would be paid, or that a change needed to be made, and typically, quickly.”

The Business Of Blogging/Writing

This blog post is going to involve the areas of Blogging/Writing, Business/Entrepreneurship, and Technology. As many of you know, I was able to monetize my blogging platform a couple of years ago. With multiple projects, I only have a little bit of time throughout the year to generate pieces here for myself now. Much of the content is generated by customers/collaborators. By the way, my new blog entitled, ‘Big Words Authors’ is now up and running and has a more literary/storytelling focus. Take look if you want to read creative writing narratives, stories, poetry, and my new book project entitled, “The Engineers: A Western New York Basketball Story”, and the many supporting promotional pieces that are on the way.

This piece, while it will discuss how I monetized my blogging platform, will also talk about two important aspects of starting your own enterprise: monitoring your business receipts and customer service. Over the years I’ve heard that systems are an important part of any successful business, and I’ve found that to be true. I will thus also discuss what happens if some of your critical systems breakdown, compromising important aspects of your business like your customer service.

There are currently numerous documents on the Big Words Blog Site involving blogging. Some were written by me, and some were written by a customer. A year or two after starting the Big Words Blog Site, I unexpectedly entered the business of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). I plan to discuss SEO in greater detail in a separate post. For now, however, I’ll just say that I started collaborating with other entities to publish content, for which I’ve been compensated. I’ve worked with several collaborators, and each involved the generation of business receipts and customer service.

Checking Your Business Receipts

In one of my Fathers’ Day posts (2017), I shared a memorable experience where my father reprimanded me for not taking my receipt and counting my change – a life changing experience for me. It turns out there’s a business context for checking your receipts. As I’ll describe in the business context, checking your receipts not only ensures a given transaction was executed properly, but it can ultimately save your business.

In short, I was able to monetize my blogging activities through the area of SEO. I’m no expert in SEO, by any means, but essentially it involves increasing your rank in the Google search engine by being linked to other websites. This is a big thing in our modern digital age and there are companies that specialize in this. The client/company/partner I started working with created short informational pieces of all kinds, linking companies in them.

Our partnership involved my publishing the content they sent to me perfectly, meaning that the final published version needed to match the draft they sent me in terms of content, structure and the weblinks inserted in the original piece. Once I sent them the published link and it was satisfactory, they would send me a receipt letting me know that the piece was perfect. I have partnered with other customers performing the same service, and still others who simply want their links added to specific contents. When the partnership with my main customer started a couple of years ago, I couldn’t believe it. It involved me publishing large amounts of content and it became profitable.

Interestingly, in some instances with large numbers of pieces being generated and passed back and forth, inevitable mistakes occurred. These were either on my end or on theirs. This was understandable as they were generating thousands of pieces (from me and others), and I was publishing as many as they could send me. Occasionally, I would unintentionally leave a link out, to which I’d receive a polite message saying, “Can you please put the X link back into the piece?”. In some instances, they’d send me an apology and would ask me to change something to update it from the draft they sent me – an error on their part.

In some cases, a link that was anchored to text would need to be changed to a naked link (the actual ‘https’ web address), or sometimes the other way around. Either way, the receipts were communications that we were good to go, and that I would be paid, or that a change needed to be made, and typically, quickly. These communications also occurred when I was offered a piece, when I accepted it, and in some instances, when they needed me to delete a narrative for whatever reason. They were very important communications for our partnership.

The Importance of Customer Service in Any Business

Up to this point I’ve discussed an important element for any business/organization without explicitly stating it, Customer Service. Depending on the office in which you work, many federal employees are rated for their level of customer service every year. Simply put, customer service is the proficiency, quality, and speed with which you see to the needs of your customers.

An example from a McDonald’s restaurant comes to mind. Years ago in a McDonald’s Restaurant I ordered an extra value meal. I could taste the food as I ordered it and was set to scarf it down as I picked the tray up from the register. Somehow, I tipped my tray in such a way that my fries all fell on the floor, spilling out everywhere in front of me. Embarrassed and sure that I’d have to pay some more, I turned back to the register.

“Can I have another medium french fry, please?” Within seconds the girl working at the register got me my new fries fresh out of the fryer, and she didn’t charge me for it. This was an example of stellar customer service.

In terms of bad customer service, how many of us have had to call technical support for your cable/internet provider? Maybe you’ve had to call for your new technology device you just purchased. How long did you have to wait on the line and did the person even speak English? Was your problem resolved or did it linger for hours, days and weeks? Depending on your answers, you may have experienced poor customer service and have either complained about that particular business, or you may have never returned to do business with them.

In a nutshell, they say that the reputation of your business spreads by word of mouth. Thus, if your customer service is poor, the word could spread quickly. The same is true if your customer service is stellar. You want to stay in the latter group as it can affect your profits. That goes for whether you’re in the food service industry or SEO.

Business Receipts, Your Business Systems, and Your Customer Service

It is said that the most important part of your business is its systems. When I started the Big Words Blog Site, I set up a Microsoft Outlook account to handle the email correspondence for the site. I eventually downloaded the Outlook app onto my smartphone and upon using it, I could quickly see the notifications my customers sent to me once we started working together. From the palm of my hand, I could see if the published pieces were satisfactory or if something needed to be changed. Outlook and its app allowed me lots of agility, so to speak.

Unfortunately, there is generally at least one technical glitch per year for my business. Earlier this year something disappointing happened. My Outlook account was hacked and I could receive emails, but I couldn’t send them. This threw a major wrench in my operation. If I couldn’t send emails, how was I going to accept and confirm the documents from my customers? Immediately, I had a light-bulb moment and decided to set up a G-mail account to conduct my business while the host attempted to fix my Outlook account.

In short, it worked, but it wasn’t the same. Fortunately, my customers started sending their content to my new G-mail account so that aspect of our partnership continued. One problem I encountered though was the functionality of the G-mail account wasn’t the same as the functionality of the Outlook account. With the G-mail account, I could see when new emails were coming in, but I couldn’t quickly differentiate when an action was needed. Also, when I opened the account on both my PC and my phone, it was difficult to differentiate between the new posts that were sent, when they were sent, and if they were satisfactory.

Because I was multitasking and was a little lax in terms of checking my business receipts, I was slow to accept documents and slow to react to errors in the pieces I published. My response time had become embarrassingly slow, and frustration built for both me and my customers. One issue went unresolved for a week and half, which was unfortunate because my customer worked according to deadlines. This was confounded by the fact that my blogging software didn’t always update in the most expedient way. A customer wrote me back once saying that they would slow down sending content and I came to the sobering realization that I may have permanently destroyed our collaboration.

Restoration Of My Outlook Account, Moving Forward and Lessons Learned

It took my webhost about three months to fix my Outlook account. In the meantime, my troubles using the G-mail account with my business taught me a valuable lesson. I paid much closer attention to every piece my customers sent to me, as they had not abandoned me. I refocused and attacked problems with a renewed intensity. I closely watched my business receipts and responded to customer emails expeditiously. Once my Outlook account was restored, things were pretty much back to normal and hopefully they will stay that way.

Closing Thoughts and Conclusions

I learned several lessons from the entire turn of events. They are as follows:

• Check your business receipts and ratings regularly.
• Make sure your customer service ratings are as high as possible.
• Have a backup plan should one or many of your business systems go down.
• In the business arena, you must remain ever vigilant.

Thank you for reading this post. If you’ve found value here and think it would benefit others, please share it and/or leave a comment. You can follow me now on YouTube on any of my Big Discussions76 channels, the Big Words Blog Site Facebook page, and Twitter at @BWArePowerful. Lastly, you can follow me on Instagram at @anwaryusef76.

The Big Words LLC Newsletter

Thank you for reading this piece. For the next phase of my writing journey, I’m starting a monthly newsletter for my writing and video content creation company, the Big Words LLC. In it, I plan to share inspirational words, pieces from this blog and my first blog, and select videos from my four YouTube channels. Finally, I will share updates for my book project The Engineers: A Western New York Basketball Story. Your personal information and privacy will be protected. Click this link and register using the sign up button at the bottom of the announcement. Regards.

3 Tips For Getting Customers To Feel Comfortable

Two focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. As a business owner, one of the things you’ll want is for your customers to feel comfortable. The following contributed post is entitled, 3 Tips For Getting Customers To Feel Comfortable.

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To break down barriers and start selling your product or service, you first need to make potential customers and clients feel comfortable about your business. Customers need to feel safe as they want to know where they’ll be putting their money towards. It also helps if they’re able to see the product, service, or even have a one-on-one conversation. Customers and clients don’t want to feel ripped off. Nowadays, it’s so easy to scam people, unfortunately.

Anyone can build a website, create ads, and begin “selling” on the internet. In-person and online shopping are both completely different experiences but both need to be presentable so potential customers and clients can feel at ease when making their decisions. Here are some tips for making your target audience get comfortable with you.

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Start with Creating a Professional-Looking Space

If your business has a physical location, utilize this. You want your business, whether it be a shop, service, or anything else, to look professional. Some customers and clients want to meet and have a discussion face to face. Some are old-fashioned and it should be something that’s respected. If your physical location doesn’t look the best, such as lacking curb appeal or lacking any visually appealing qualities then you’ll want to look into fixing that. Having a comfortable and professional-looking space is vital. Not only will potential customers enjoy this, but it helps employees work more efficiently as well.

You may want to look into a skip bin hire and then make some changes to your workspace. Adding some nice furniture, painting the walls, and changing up the flooring can truly transform the space. Lighting and décor are important as well, as these help out in setting a desired atmosphere to the space. You may even want to add something to the exterior such as plants so the outside looks presentable too. It may seem like a lot of work but first impressions matter as they are long-lasting.

Have a Contact Page on Your Website

If you have a business website (and you should), you need to get yourself a contact page. Yes, a professional and up-to-date website is very important but it’s also important to have the appropriate pages on there too. This contact page should contain information about the company so customers and clients can reach you. You should provide a number as well, and answer any incoming calls. Sure, there may be challenges of using articulate speech during phone calls but it’s crucial to let customers know they’re real humans and you’re running a real business.

Utilize Customer Testimonials

Reviews are one of the most important components for a customer. This is what will help them in deciding on what to purchase or who to hire. You’ll find reviews on social media ( such as Facebook), Google Business Reviews, The Bom, YouTube, and even on a website testimonials page. Whether customers want to compliment you or criticize your service, they should be allowed to. Both positive and negative reviews will let customers know that you’re a real business and it will raise their comfort levels.

Make Sure They Know How To Use Your Products or Services

It’s important that your customers know how to use the4 services or products you’re selling. That’s why demonstrations and customer training processes can be very useful, particularly in certain niches. Software as a service is the perfect example of a niche that requires customer training in order for them to get the most out of the product. Good saas customer success training makes a real difference to outcomes in the industry.

Common Reasons For Customer Dissatisfaction

Two focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. A key component to the success of your business is customer satisfaction. As such you want to avoid those things that would sour your customers. The following contributed post is entitled, Common Reasons For Customer Dissatisfaction.

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(Pixabay CC0)

Customer dissatisfaction occurs when your business fails to meet the expectations of your customers.

For you, the consequences can be dire. After failing to satisfy your customers, you may lose their custom in the short or long term. The reputation of your business could be badly affected if bad word of mouth and online reviews reflect the areas in which your business has fallen down. And as a consequence of these situations, you could make losses in your business if news of customer dissatisfaction spreads.

As a business owner, you know the importance of making your customers happy. Dissatisfaction is not the word you want to hear. But to understand more, let’s consider why customers may be dissatisfied.

#1: Poor quality product or service

What are you offering your customers? If it’s a particular product, it needs to be of good quality, functional, and long-lasting. Something of poor quality that breaks within days or weeks of purchase is hardly likely to satisfy your customers.

If you are offering a particular service, you need to fulfill what you have promised. The work you do for the customer needs to be of good quality because this is what they expect when they pay you. A rushed job that fails to meet their needs is going to cause dissatisfaction.

To ensure quality, you should commit to training for yourself and your team when it is needed. And if certain tasks can’t be managed properly in-house, you should outsource to experts, such as industrial sewing services if you are selling fabric-based products. By taking these steps, you will be better able to offer quality to your customers.

#2: Bad customer service

When your customers reach out to your business, they expect timely answers, polite interactions, and a proper answer to the questions they are asking. They don’t expect a long wait on the phone, rude customer service representatives, and a less-than-satisfying response to their queries.

For the benefit of your customers, you need to make sure your employees are trained in customer service skills. You need to monitor their interactions occasionally and give them guidance or warnings if they aren’t treating your customers well. And you also want to cut down on wait times when your customers try to reach you. Outsource to a call center if you need to, provide a live chat option on your website, and be diligent when it comes to answering emails and returning phone calls.

#3: Overpricing

You will be keen to make a profit in your business but that profit shouldn’t come from overpriced products. When a customer realizes that they have paid more than is standard for a product or service, they will be quick to let the world know on business review sites and social media.

You make a profit by gaining more customers and not by ripping them off. So, make sure your pricing is fair by conducting a pricing survey before settling on a final cost. This way, your customers won’t slam you for unfair pricing and you won’t lose them to business rivals that are offering cheaper prices.

Finally

By keeping your customers happy, you will experience return custom, better word of mouth, and higher profits. So, consider your customers. Are they satisfied with your business? Find out by asking for their feedback and by checking reviews about your business online. If you need to make changes to counter criticisms, then do so.

Tips For Maintaining Your Customer’s Attention

Two focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. Arguably the most important part of any business is its marketing. A part of marketing is figuring out how to maintain your customer’s attention. The following contributed post is entitled, Tips For Maintaining Your Customer’s Attention.

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Maintaining the attention of your customers is super important so that they don’t lose interest. Non-interested customers will slowly hinder your business sales, which will decrease profits and make it harder to grow and expand your business. To make your business more effective and successful, it is important to engage your customers.

On that note, here are the best tips for maintaining your customer’s attention.

Inside Restaurant Bar – Free photo on Pixabay

Make an engaging website
If your business runs an online website, that it will need to be as engaging as possible to maintain the attention of your customers. If your business doesn’t have a website, then it will benefit your business to work with a website design team who will help to build your site. A business website will help your business be more discoverable, which will boost sales and success.

Your business website should be as responsive as possible, which will maintain the attention of your customers. Using an expert in the field will ensure that your website is easy to use and smooth so that your customers do not lose interest.

Fast responses
An effective way to keep your customers engaged is to respond to their comments and questions as fast as possible. Although it would be ideal to offer your customers immediate responses, sometimes it simply isn’t possible. Therefore, ensure to stay on top of your comments/queries so that you can turn around quick responses.

If you do want to try and increase your response time and offer more frequent immediate responses then it can help to build a live chat service on your website. During business hours, customers can contact you there and attain an immediate response to their query, which will keep them attentive and interested.

Never promise anything
You should avoid promising anything to your customers because if you fail to meet the expectations that you have set out for yourself, then you will lose your customer’s trust. Therefore, never hand out promises.

Instead, fulfilling your own expectations should be enough to satisfy your customers and keep them interested.

Get to know your customers
The more personal you are with your customers, the more engaged they will be. Simply knowing their name or their preferences will ensure that you can be friendly and create a relationship, which will keep them coming back to use your business.

Getting to know your customers will also mean that you can rely on them for regular and honest feedback. The more feedback you attain from your customers about your business, the more you can improve and ensure that you provide your customers with what they want.

Offer regular deals
Every customer will appreciate a good deal from time to time. Therefore, offering regular deals to your existing customers will make them feel appreciated and encourage them to keep shopping with you to attain more deals.

You could offer a reward scheme whereby you offer a free product for every ten purchases made. It will keep them interested and engaged with your business, which will maintain their loyalty.

3 Effective Ways To Encourage Customer Loyalty

Two focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. No matter what you business is, you want to maximize your customer retention. The following contributed post is entitled, 3 Effective Ways To Encourage Customer Loyalty.

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Image Credit: Free-Photos from Pixabay.

The goal of any business is to sell products and make money. Traditionally, that’s been done by selling to anybody willing to buy your products. Over the past few years, however, the concept of customer loyalty has become increasingly prominent.

That’s because focusing on it can reap quite a few benefits, notably increased business from repeat customers. As a result, an increasing number of companies have been focusing on it. Other firms are still on the fence, though, and aren’t completely convinced about it.

Should it be something you focus on and, how can you actually increase customer loyalty?

Why Is Customer Loyalty Important?

Customer loyalty improves the chances of customers coming back to your business. As a result, it could mean repeat sales over time as customers begin seeing you as a preferred brand. With that, you will generate more sales and make more profit over time.

How To Build Customer Loyalty

Have Loyalty & Referral Programs

As the name would suggest, customer loyalty programs are an effective way of encouraging repeat business. That’s also the case with referral programs, which can help build trust with your potential customers. There are quite a few customer loyalty solutions that you can use to that end.

These typically have a few terms and conditions attached. For example, customers might have to buy X number of products per month to qualify for a small prize. For the customer, they’ll be getting a surprise, while your company gets that increased spending.

Through this, your customers will also repeatedly come back as a force of habit. That will continue to encourage brand loyalty over time.

Play To Your Values

Customers gravitate to brands whose values reflect their own. That also means focusing on what makes your company stand out amongst its competitors. What makes it different, and why should potential customers pick it?

Play up these strengths while working on any weaknesses, and customers will start to see you as reliable and trustworthy. Over time, this opinion of your business will become increasingly more positive, especially if you keep to your word.

In turn, that means giving customers a positive experience each time they interact with your brand. That will then help convince customers to keep coming back.

Encourage Feedback

Your customers want to feel value. One of the easiest and most effective ways of doing this is by asking for their feedback. By listening to them and acting on their opinions, you show them that you care about them. There are a few ways that you can do this.

On your product’s packaging and website, for instance, you can provide directions on how customers can contact you. Explicitly ask them for their opinion. While not every customer will take you up on the offer, enough of them should so that you can find actionable improvements to your brand.

The practice also means that you can find areas of improvement that you might not have thought of before. It allows you to adapt to your customers’ needs.

By implementing the above, your company will be well on its way to developing a loyal and active customer base. The profits that this can generate will make the efforts well worth your while.

How To Provide The Best Service For Your Customers Everytime

Two focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. No matter what business you’re in, you want your customer service to be exemplary. Doing so will ensure that your customers comeback and they may even tell others. The following contributed post is entitled, How To Provide The Best Service For Your Customers Everytime.

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Image Pexels CC0 License

Delivering the best customer service is something that all businesses strive to achieve, but it is often a struggle to make this a reality. Running a business is a complicated task, and there is always something that needs to be done. The pressure of having too much to do and not enough time to do it can often mean that customer service suffers. Trying to find a balance between completing everything you need to keep your business operating each day and delivering an exceptional customer experience is a challenging balancing act. Finding tools that help make it easier for you to provide excellent customer service is the best way to solve this issue. If you are struggling to offer high levels of customer service, why not give some of these ideas a try?

Outsource Your Call Center

Monitoring customer phone calls and dealing with every customer query yourself may feel impossible. However, taking on an extra team to handle these calls on your behalf can be cost-prohibitive. To overcome this issue and get the customer support you need without recruiting a customer service team, you could look for Inbound Call Center Solutions that will handle this time-consuming task on your behalf. This will allow you to benefit from a trained and skilled team of representatives taking your phone calls while you concentrate on growing your business.

Make Your Website Easy to Use

If you want to increase sales and provide high levels of customer satisfaction, your website can help. Improving your website to give a flawless customer experience is the best way to improve your conversion rate and make shopping a seamless process for your customers. This will enable customers to find everything they need immediately and will ensure the checkout transaction is smooth and fast. Adding a frequently asked questions page will make it even simpler for your customers to find the answers they need and improve their experience using your site and dealing with your business.

Deliver High-Quality Products

Even excellent customer service will not be enough if your products are not high-quality. Producing the best quality products will ensure your customers are satisfied with their experience of using your business. Making every effort to create your products to the highest standards is the first step toward delivering the best customer service. The next step is to ensure the products reach your customers on time and in the best possible condition. Taking care of how your products are packaged and using a reliable delivery firm so they get to your customers fast will help impress your customers. The combination of high-quality products and fast delivery will leave customers delighted with your service.

Final Thoughts on Customer Service

Providing the best customer experience relies on a combination of factors. You will need a call center to professionally handle your customer queries and make the shopping process a hassle-free experience. Finally, excellent quality products delivered on time will ensure your customers receive the best service every step of the way.

2021 Is A Time For Change In How You Communicate With Your Customers

Three focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money, Business/Entrepreneurship and Technology. After the events of 2020, changes in the traditional ways of doing lots of things have changed but sector that may have been most effective is the business world. The following contributed post is entitled, 2021 Is A Time For Change In How You Communicate With Your Customers.

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Photo: Unsplash

Following the corona crisis, many businesses are learning how to re-communicate with their customers and adapt to the needs of the newly created market. The new reality dictates a new order in which every business that wants to survive / succeed must recalculate its path.

In 2020, a reality was created in which small and large businesses begin to examine trends in their industry and create new business opportunities: from upgrading the existing site to best meet customer needs to taking ecological and social responsibility. Good communication adapted to these times, will create an increase in customer involvement in your business and will contribute to an increase in sales. Following this, we have compiled for you a list of business trends for the year 2021, which must be taken into account, when you come to communicate with your customers:

  1. Beyond marketing on on-line trading sites
  2. Increasing mobile marketing
  3. Create an app for your business
  4. Customize customer service
  5. Increase in the percentage of remote work
  6. Creating an online community
  7. Promoting data transparency
  8. Cultivating social responsibility and preserving the environment

Due to declining purchases in physical stores, many businesses have opened an online branch to market their products. They may present virtual events to people also. You should look at Hybrid events.

More efficient business management: The digital options allow, among other things, managing orders and payments, using data-based insights, tracking performance, targeting, issuing online invoices and more, all at the click of a button, which saves time, money and resources and streamlines the business.

Mobile marketing is one of the emerging trends in recent years: Following the rise in the use of smartphones and tablets and an estimated five billion people carrying mobile devices – the most direct and focused channel for your audience is through their phone. The following are some ideas on how to market to your customers via mobile:

  1. Creating a winning mobile site that caters to users who surf through their device most of the day.
  2. Segment your customers and create Google ads that offer relevant products that reflect your shopping preferences
  3. Send a text message, updating on the latest promotion
  4. Using Google’s geographical location, and sending messages to potential customers in your business area

Customizing customer service

In a message-saturated reality, customers prefer personal attention and expect more businesses to follow their consumption habits and tailor dedicated sales offers to them. Subsequently, in recent years (and now even more so), a customized customer service has developed, based on knowing your customer and tailoring the referral and messages to him according to his buying habits. How do you do that? Well, to market properly one needs to study, research and collect data. Once this is known, you can move forwards effectively. One way to learn about your customers is through the use of digital research tools, which will tell you about their behavior, in the context of your business. 2021 is a year of growth, and to make changes for the better. Don’t see these changes as negative, because truthfully, you are beginning an incredible journey.

The Best Ways to Make Your Customers Happier

Two focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. In the business world, one of your roles is not only to attract customers, but also to make them happy depending on their needs and wants. The following contributed post is entitled, The Best Ways to Make Your Customers Happier.

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A successful business needs to keep its customers happy. Not only will it encourage them to come back, but if they’re happy, they will also be more likely to recommend your business to others. Ensuring your customers walk away happy is something you’re probably already trying to do, but what if you could make them even happier? You might find that, despite your efforts, your customers aren’t as satisfied as you’d like them to be. Fortunately, there are various strategies that you can try to make your customers happier than ever. Keep reading to find out what you can do to increase happiness for your customers.

Image from Pexels – CC0 License

Be More Personal

Personalizing your brand is important if you want to be able to connect with your customers. If you’re just a faceless corporate entity, it makes it hard for your customers to really engage with what you have to offer. There are many different techniques available for taking a more personal approach to running your business. It might include meeting clients face-to-face or over video chat, instead of just communicating by email. It could also include things like giving customers a special discount on their birthday or even just wishing them a happy holiday.

Help Them Save Money

Everyone likes to be able to save money where they can, even if they have plenty of money themselves. If you can help your customers to save money at every opportunity, instead of obviously pushing them to spend more, you could find that they end up spending more money with you in the end. One of the ways to work on customer experience optimization is to take a look at your pricing strategy. Changing your pricing can help you to be more competitive and please your customers. You can also offer discounts and special offers, or even recommend lower priced options to customers to show you can be trusted to provide the best advice.

Image from Pexels – CC0 License

Give Them Support

Customer support is often just as important as the product or service that you are offering. If your customer service and support is bad, it can turn customers away from you and cause them to warn others off your brand too. One of the ways to improve customer support in the digital age is to make your support more available. 24/7 customer support is possible with things like self-help sections on your website or chatbots, which can answer common queries and take people’s details out of hours.

Offer More Value

Offering more value to your customers doesn’t just mean giving them a good price. It also means going beyond your product or service to give your customers something that they weren’t expecting. This is something that you can think about when marketing your business, but also when delivering your product or service. Your website might provide extra value through an informative blog, while you could offer extra value through your products by delivering them in beautiful packaging for a great unboxing experience.

Happier customers will keep coming back and recommend you to others, so start working on increasing customer satisfaction now.

Curb Appeal Tricks For Your Business

Two focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. If you have a ‘brick and mortar’ business, a key consideration is your curb appeal. New customers are more likely to wander in your business has a compelling appearance. The following contributed post is entitled, Curb Appeal Tricks For Your Business.

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The way that your business looks from the outside can make a lot of difference. Curb appeal is one of the many things you need to keep on top of as a business owner and can help to draw in potential customers. When customers or clients walk past or arrive at your business, an outside that looks tidy and smart makes a good impression before they even get inside.

Image – free for commercial use

1. Clean the pavement. Pressure washing is the easiest to thoroughly clean the pavement, your car park, or any paved area outside your business. If the outside is clean, your business will look a lot more inviting.

2. Add some plants. Greenery and flowers are a simple way to add personality and color to the front of your businesses. Fill some planters and put them on either side of your front door. This looks welcoming and also gives visitors the impression that someone is looking after the premises.

3. Give your signage a refresh. If your signage has seen better days or has become faded, it shows that the business isn’t being looked after and this gives a bad impression. Repair any signage that needs to be fixed, and repaint anything that has faded or looks like it would benefit from a refresh. Show off your branding.

4. Sweep outside every day. The outside of your business can easily start to look scruffy, with litter, dead leaves, and cigarette ends gathering. Someone needs to sweep out front every day to clear away this unsightly litter. Before you open for the day, sweep outside so your frontage looks cared for, clean, and ready to entice people in as they arrive.

5. Change your window displays frequently. If your business has a window at the front, make the most of your space for window displays. Show off different ranges of products, and change these displays on a regular basis. If you change the displays, people who walk past the store frequently, such as on the way to work, will notice that there is something different in the window to look at and they could notice something in the window that encourages them to come inside and find out more.

6. Make it obvious what your business actually does. Anyone walking or driving by your premises should be able to tell at a quick glance what your business does. Make sure that your signage makes this very clear.

7. Make sure your parking area is well lit and well sign-posted. If your customers can park at your business, clearly signpost where the parking spaces are so people can find them. Make sure any parking restrictions are also very obvious. Customers will be put off if think they can park, but then get hit with a parking ticket. Make your parking safe with well-maintained parking lot paving and plenty of lights. If people come to your business when it’s dark, they’ll benefit from the lights to help them feel safe. It’s also a useful addition for your staff when they leave at the end of the day.

3 Ways to Make a Good First Impression With Customers

Two focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. The saying says, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” This rule is absolutely true for you customers as a good first impression will increase the likelihood of them coming back. The following sponsored post is entitled, 3 Ways to Make a Good First Impression With Customers.

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Shoppes often make assumptions about a store and the products inside from the first impressions they get from the property and store exterior. It takes about a tenth of a second for people to form an opinion, leaving you little room for error with your store’s appearance. You need to snag consumer attention fast. Here are some ways to make sure you a creating a positive first impression with customers.

Pay Attention to Exterior Visual Appeal

The minute a car pulls up to your parking lot, the clock starts ticking. Debris and garbage laying around in parking spaces or giant cracks and potholes on the surface send a message the no one cares. Have parking lot maintenance on your priority list, whether it by hiring an emulsion sealer Frederick MD company or by having a parking lot task item added to the end of day routine. Signage should be well-lit and up-to-date. Don’t have peeling paint, missing letters, or a special that was running six months ago.

Create a Pleasant Environment

When a customer walks into your store, there should be an immediate greeting that is friendly and welcoming. Train employees to avoid sounding fake or forced and have them make eye contact whenever possible with an incoming customer. Keep your aisles clear and spacious, and avoid having too many signs or displays out at one time. Use colors that pair well and have good strong lighting.

Establish a Customer-Centric Culture

The way someone talks to a customer is another way to make a good first impression. Your whole brand could be evaluated by one snippy or rude comment. Make sure your staff are courteous and accommodating at all times. Have a dress code that is professional and attitudes that match. Good communication goes a long way in making a good impression.

These three areas can help your store create a favorable first impression with consumers. The better an experience for a customer, the more likely you are to get recommended to others.