12/06/2017 - 13:21

Your customers need you

12/06/2017 - 13:21

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OPINION: If you want to know how good you really are, be your own customer and find out.

Your customers need you
If your website is slow or clunky, or you’re unavailable to be contacted, your clients may look elsewhere. Photo: Stockphoto

One day I got the shock of my life; I tried to buy something on my own website and couldn’t.

Funny, I buy all kinds of things on other people’s websites. I’m a one-click buyer on Amazon. I’m a PayPal customer. And I have my credit card registered and saved on every site that will allow it. In short, I trust the internet.

In short, if I decide I want to buy something online, I want to buy it fast. And I don’t know about you, but I’m not keen to fill out an online order form (where all the boxes say it’s ‘mandatory’ to enter my information).

Many subscribers to my weekly email magazine have taken advantage of the ‘deal of the week’, a special offer on a bundle of my books and CDs. Recently, we decided to present something for the first time – a $20 discount off any of my upcoming public seminar tickets.

So I went to my own site to test the offer. I put in a request to buy five tickets. The website (my website) promised fast and easy purchase. And that promise was anything but the truth. It was a pain in the butt. I clicked off of my own site in frustration and disgust.

I immediately pulled the offer and we went through an e-commerce exercise that brought me back to reality. We revamped the purchasing process to where it is fast and easy, and easy to understand. It is now fixed for the short term, and we have a long-term plan in place (actually in motion) to make it even faster and easier.

Had I not tried to buy something from my own website, I would have never known. I would have danced along actually believing my own words, never realising that customers were frustrated, and worse, not buying. No doubt many were clicking off, abandoning the next step in the buying process because it was slow, cumbersome, and uninformative.

How’s yours? Think your e-commerce is great? Have you ever tried to buy something from yourself? Do you believe your own instructions?

Here’s a challenge – be your own customer at least once a month.

In these trying times, many customers (yours and mine) are struggling to maintain volume, profit, and productivity.

If and when your customers call or go online, they expect instant answers, instant service, and instant delivery of whatever they need – or they will seek a competitor.

And they expect multiple options to connect with you, any time of the day or night, to get the help they need, or purchase the product they need.

Their need is your opportunity. Your challenge is to turn them into a happy, loyal customer who is willing to repeat purchase, tell others, and refer others to you.

Here’s what to do to self-insure your own success.

1. Call your business five minutes before you open, and try to place an order, or get service.

2. Call your business five minutes after you close, and try to place an order, or get service.

3. Go online and try to buy something. How long does it take (how many clicks) compared with Amazon?

4. Call your business during the day and complain to someone. Then ask for the person’s boss – or even your CEO.

4.5 Now call yourself and listen to your pathetic voicemail that tells me everything I do not want to hear, and does not tell me the one thing I want to hear.

Whatever your experience when you call yourself or buy from yourself online is the same thing your customers, your life-blood, and your money-line are experiencing.

Fix it fast. Your customers need you.

 

Jeffrey Gitomer is an American author, professional speaker and business trainer, who writes and lectures internationally on sales, customer loyalty and personal development. © 2017 All rights reserved. Don’t reproduce this document without written permission from Jeffrey H. Gitomer and Buy Gitomer.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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