Providing good customer service just isn’t enough anymore, not with companies the world over clamoring for the dwindling dollars consumers spend. And heaven forbid your customer service should be classified average! That could, literally, be the death of a company if it’s not turned around quickly.

Encourage your team to take customer service from bland and boring to knock-your-socks-off spectacular, however, and you can stand back and watch the amazing results achieved!
1. Engage your customers. Step into their shoes. Understand where they’re coming from. Listen. Empathize. Often customers only want to be heard. They may not even expect a problem to be solved, but they want to know that an employee cares about their problem. When your employees do that, you’ve taken a long stride in turning customers into raving fans who’ll return to your company often and encourage others to do the same.
2. Create a positive, lasting customer experience. Walk through your company to see how customers perceive their experience in dealing with you from start to finish. Did their phone call get answered promptly and courteously? Were they greeted with a smile and a friendly hello when they walked in the door? If an employee didn’t have an answer to a question or a need, were they quick to search for an answer?

Consider every aspect of the relationship a customer experiences when doing business with you, then work to build a positive experience that meets them at the door and walks them through their entire visit and beyond. Choose 1 or 2 specific elements and do them better than anyone else. They will become your point of differentiation.

3. Get out of the proverbial box. Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is one definition of insanity. Customers love to be surprised and the best way to do that is do things a little differently. Do something unusual and extra-ordinary. Your customers will keep coming back just to see what you’ll do next.

4. Indulge your customers. Live the adage that “the customer is always right” in your company. Let them know that you’ll go out of your way to ensure they are “wowed!” Offer a little more than the “other guy.” Your customers will notice. Wouldn’t you?

5. Get excited! Customers thrill at customer service delivered with excitement and enthusiasm. They’ll rave about how much fun it is to do business with your company. And who will they be raving to? Friends, family and anyone else who’ll listen. Employees who are excited about serving customers create customers who feel appreciated. In turn, they’ll reward your company with continued business and extravagant praise for everything you do.

Customer service goes far beyond a one-time visit or experience. Customer service that turns average, ho-hum customers into raving fans can only be accomplished by a team full of customer-oriented, customer-focused employees driven to impress and inspire customers with their level of concern. Build such a team in your company, and you’ll amaze yourselves at the level of customer loyalty you create!