Let’s start at the beginning!
The inspiration for this blog post came from watching one of my all-time favourite chick flicks, ‘How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days‘.
Andie Anderson (played by Kate Hudson) works for Composure Magazine as the “how-to girl”. She is assigned the task of writing an article on ‘How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days’, outlining all the “mistakes” that girls make when they first meet a guy.
From calling him 50 times a day to creating an album of their “future family”, Andie is determined to take Benjamin Barry (played by Matthew McConaughey) on an unforgettable ride over the period of their 10-day relationship!
Not only does this movie crack me up every time I see it, it recently got me thinking about the customer service mistakes that we, as business owners, might be making. Simple mistakes that could be hurting our chances when it comes to running a successful online business.
I’ve explored five below and I would love to know what you think. Feel free to comment below and share your thoughts!
1. Taking too long to respond or not responding at all.
Especially during peak seasons, things can get a bit hectic to say the least. You may feel like you’re being pulled in every direction and the need to stay up to date on your emails has dropped on the priority list. Not receiving a response however, is one issue that I constantly read about in Facebook groups. The customer has sent an online inquiry, only to be let down by a lack of contact from the business owner.
Try this: One way to overcome this is to add an email auto-responder. The customer receives contact immediately and is reassured that her email hasn’t been sent into a black hole!
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With that said, I still like to respond within 24-48 hours, but at least with an auto-responder, a potential client will know when she can expect to hear back from you.
2. Not having an image of yourself on your website.
The need to “humanise” your brand is now more important than ever. Your customers want to do business with YOU.
Therefore, a simple tweak such as adding a picture of yourself will allow them to “put a face to a name” and help to reduce their anxiety when it comes to potentially hiring you.
3. Not having your pricing on your website.
A potential client comes across your website. She loves your style and what you have to offer. She decides that you might be a contender in her list of vendors, but wants to check out your pricing first.
The problem…. your service prices are nowhere to be found…
After hunting around on your site for a while, she decides not to contact you after assuming that you’re probably out of her price range and leaves your website.
Now, the issue of whether to put your pricing on your website is a bit of a controversial one. Some people believe that it’s best to display prices, whereas others feel that you’re giving your competitors an advantage by showing them on your website.
This is only the case though, if the ONLY thing you are competing on, is price.
Yes, people may choose to contact you and ask for your prices. However, that simply adds one more task on their to-do list. It means that you could be also be attracting the wrong type of clients to your business.
4. Lacking a Clear Service Structure.
Fear of the unknown.
This is often something which can potentially make us extremely anxious. When we don’t know what to expect, it means that we have to take a risk in order to find out.
When a client hires you without a clear idea of what to expect as a result of working together, this can not only lead to unnecessary anxiety but also potential disappointment. This is particularly true if the desired outcome is not clear from the very beginning.
No matter what business you have, providing your clients with a clear outline of what to expect throughout the service process will increase your level of professionalism. Most importantly, it makes them feel a lot more relaxed and in control.
5. Not having a Follow-Up System.
Life is busy. Sometimes the fact that a potential client hasn’t emailed you back isn’t about not wanting to work with you. It may be a simple case of them getting distracted and forgetting about needing to respond.
Having a set follow-up system will prevent potential sales from getting lost in the system.
Again, Dubsado has been a lifesaver for me when it comes to follow-ups. You may not remember to email a potential or past client 6 days, weeks, or months down the track. Dubsado allows you to automate this entire process. You can simply set and forget it – until they respond to your follow-up that is! Sign up for your free trial of Dubsado here.
So when should you follow-up?
If I have emailed someone after receiving their initial online enquiry, but I haven’t heard back from them, I will generally send a follow-up email after 7 days. If they still don’t respond, I generally leave it at that. There is no point in sending any further emails, if you can sense they are not interested.
Are you making any of these “mistakes”?
Have you got any more to add that may help other business owners? I would love to hear from you!