I went to a local beauty store a bit ago to pick up some shampoo. They were out of the shampoo I wanted to buy (that’s the first issue), but they happily offered to have the shampoo sent from another store. I thought, “great”, this is what customer service is supposed to be.
I was told it should arrive in 3-4 days and that they would call me.
After five days, no call. I was driving by the store so I stopped in. They said that it hadn’t arrived yet but showed me in the book where they log customer requests and it was noted that the shampoo had been ordered and which store it was coming from. The employee told me it should take another day or two. I was still impressed that they had a system in place (but a little miffed that it had taken longer than they said it would).
I decided not to follow up again to see what would happen. Cut to today – two weeks later – no call and no shampoo. I actually had run out of shampoo a week ago so stopped by another place and bought two bottles.
THE REAL WORLD RETAILING TAKEAWAY
Do what you say you’re going to do.
This store mentioned above has a great assortment of product, which is why I shop there. The employees are mediocre but since I know what I’m looking for, it’s usually not a problem. But the fact that they botched this seemingly simple customer service request has me thinking twice about shopping there.
Here’s how these types of miscues impact your business:
- They breed distrust among your customer base – you can’t execute a simple request. And you want me to trust you with cutting my hair?
- They negate any relationship-building you’ve achieved. All is takes is one misstep to have the customer question your loyalty to them as a customer. I’m hoping they realized they didn’t contact me and will do something to make up for it but I’m not holding my breath.
- They create negative word of mouth. We all know the adage — have a good experience, tell one person. Have a bad experience, tell 10 people.
- They result in lost sales. I bought product elsewhere. That should have been their sale. How much money are they losing because are customers are having similar experiences and are shopping elsewhere?
If you’re going to purport to have a customer service model or program, you better execute it flawlessly. Or you’ll risk losing customers as a result. Any customer service program that achieves less than 100% is a failure – if one customer isn’t satisfied, then you’re not on your game. What are you doing to achieve a perfect score?