Customer Service and Your Website

I know you have worked hard to ensure that your business provides great customer service.  And, if you are like me, you want your website to provide that same customer service.  Here’s how.

An inviting homepage.  Is it welcoming and friendly?  Easy to read and trustworthy?  Your website needs to build up your visitors’  trust.  Though flashing images and items popping up on the screen may be "cool", it can often put the visitor on alert.  They may see these effects as a way to distract them from your lack of knowledge or business know-how.  Why risk it?  Yes, your page needs to be attractive and catch their attention, but often times, less is more.

Website Text.  Read through the text on your website as if you are a a potential client.  Does it answer their main questions - "What’s in it for me?", What will it do for me?" and "How much will it cost me?  They don’t care about you or what you want.  They are only there to satisfy their needs.  So give them what they want.

Automatic Responders. These are great tools, but will never replace the personal touch that only you can provide.  Don’t rely solely on email.  Pick up the phone once in a while or send a handwritten note.  Sure, it takes a little extra time and effort, but isn’t that what customer service is all about?  If it was easy, everyone would be doing it. 

Provide Address and Phone Number.  I don’t know about you but I find it very irritating to go to a website and not find a phone number or mailing address.  I find the contact link, click it, and up pops my email program.  By providing visitors a number of ways to contact you, you are saying - "hey, I am here for you".  It also says that you are serious about your business and plan on staying around a while.  Those companies that don’t provide that information can be seen as "shady" or part time.  If you work from home and don’t want your home address listed, get a Post Office Box. 

Be creative and find your own personal style in creating customer service.   This newsletter is my way.  What’s yours?

February 1, 2006

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