Manage the Customer’s Expectations Up Front
When customers first begin to do business with you, they will have their own expectations and hopes regarding your product and service delivery. The best way to make sure you are seen as reliable and deliver on promises is to educate them from the beginning what to expect from us.
Let them know how your business works. Tell them how long processes, program, or deliveries take. Inform them of your billing practices before the first order is placed. Advise them of the information or steps you need from them in order to complete the process or order.
You may have to do this a few times in a few different ways. We, as business owners, often find that customers don’t really read all of the information we give them. As customers, we’ve done the same thing. So be sure to integrate a system to cover the same information verbally. Be it the person who takes the order from your customer or the receptionist they speak with, make sure that someone is talking with the customer to let them know what will happen and what to expect.
Once customers are informed about the way you do business, they will have a clear understanding of what to expect from you. They won’t be calling you the day after an order was placed frustrated that it hasn’t been delivered yet. They’ll know it typically takes 4 business day to arrive. You won’t receive angry calls from customers asking what the status of their insurance policies is because you’ve let them know that in order to get accurate quotes, you need paperwork from them.
Customers really don’t like surprises, unless it is a delightful experience. Keep negative surprises to a minimum by making sure they know the process, time frames, and expected outcomes every step of the way. Be sure to keep them informed should something not go according to plan. They’ll thank you for it.