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Mistakes Small Businesses Make When Interacting with Clients

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Although attentive customer service has always been important for small businesses, it’s become absolutely essential in the digital age. For one thing, consumers now have more options than ever before. No matter what types of products or services your enterprise offers, odds are a quick Google search will reveal a sizable number of competitors. Additionally, with consumer feedback outlets steadily growing in popularity, many dissatisfied patrons won’t hesitate to make their frustrations known. So, in the interest of maintaining a reputation for good customer service, take care to avoid the following mistakes.

Failing to Keep Clients in the Loop 

Keeping clients in the loop throughout every stage of a project can have a number of far-reaching benefits. For one thing, many clients are sure to appreciate being kept abreast of your progress. Secondly, this effectively diminishes the likelihood of misunderstandings and miscommunications. If a client is able to review your team’s progress in real-time, they’ll be able to promptly bring any mistakes or misinterpreted directions to your attention. Needless to say, this is infinitely preferable to be made aware of a plethora of mistakes at the very end of a project. 

Luckily, there have never been more ways to engage in prompt communication with clients. While traditional phone calls and emails still serve important purposes, a dependable bulk text service can prove helpful at reaching out to multiple clients at once.  

Not Being Timely in Your Responses 

Odds are you don’t appreciate feeling ignored by businesses you grace with your patronage. When a business fails to deal with questions, complaints, and other feedback in a timely manner, clients are liable to feel as if their needs don’t matter. While some clients are certainly more difficult to please than others and some questions are more complex than others, responses to queries sent during your normal hours of operation should be expedient. If you’re unable to answer a certain question right away, let the client know that you’ve received their query and are working on getting all the info you need to provide a satisfactory answer.    

Being Dismissive of Concerns 

Part of managing a business is realizing that all customers are different. While some clients are exceedingly easy to please, others will demand a much higher level of attention and oversight. Unsurprisingly, you’re liable to be met with a lot of comments and concerns from the latter. Still, no matter how difficult a client is to deal with, their concerns should never be dismissed. This isn’t to say that every concern is equally valid, but if you develop a reputation for waving off client concerns, you may see a downturn in both new and repeat business. So, even if a client consistently bombards you with unwarranted concerns, you’ll still need to address them in a timely and professional manner.   

Shifting The Blame 

Although the adage “The customer is always right” remains popular in the customer service sector, most people who have worked with the public know that it’s not entirely accurate. While every small business makes the occasional mistake, this doesn’t mean that every misstep is entirely your fault. For example, unmet expectations often stem from vagueness on the part of clients as opposed to blunders on the part of businesses. 

However, this doesn’t mean that you should try shifting the blame every time a client brings a mistake to your attention. Upon being met with such accusations, many business owners will deny any responsibility for the errors and try to shift the blame squarely to the client. No one relishes dealing with people who refuse to accept any measure of culpability for their own mistakes – especially if they happen to be paying these individuals. So, the next time a client comes to you with a problem or offers up some constructive criticism, consider what they have to say before attempting to claim no responsibility.  

Since loyal customers are crucial to the continued existence of any business, it stands to reason that stellar customer service should be among the top priorities of every small business owner. Unfortunately, too many enterprises regard customer service as an afterthought, thereby facilitating a host of undesirable consequences. From negative word-of-mouth to abysmal online reviews, a dissatisfied patron can cause quite a bit of damage to your professional reputation. Small business owners looking to get out ahead of such problems should be vigilant about avoiding the blunders discussed above.    

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