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Marketing Viewpoint by Ruth Winett

Ten Ways To Get To Yes and Stay There


The beginning of the year is a good time to find ways to look for ways to make it easier for customers to work with your company. Make transactions friction-free.


How To Make Customer Transactions Friction-free

  • Do your homework. Know your customers and your customers' wants and needs.
  • Answer inquiries within 24 hours or less--even if it is to say "sorry." A contractor who promised to do a small project never returned calls and didn't show up. We will not call him again, even though he previously had done good work for us.
  • Be selective. You can't serve everyone equally effectively. Say "no thanks" in a professional way, and provide referrals when appropriate.
  • Provide clear, but appropriate, information during the sales cycle. Answer questions promptly, but don't overwhelm customers with unwanted details.
  • Control expectations. Make it clear what you are providing. Don't promise anything you cannot provide. Disappointed customers tell nine others about their experience.
  • Reduce paperwork associated with proposals, contracts, and warranties. Use templates, but individualize them. People often refuse to sign a contract that includes unnecessary boiler plate, as well as provisos that do not apply. 
  • Streamline internal processes, such as signoffs by your legal department and by upper management.
  • Be able to scale. If you provide services, line up associates who can help in busy times. If you sell products, stock enough, but not too much inventory. Technology may help you plan. For example,Teikametrics helps Amazon sellers control inventory. 
  • Build a reputation for providing superior service and support. Every single employee plays a role in creating a customer friendly environment.
  • Set realistic deadlines, and then meet the deadlines. Ship the product, or do the work on schedule.

As a business person, your goal is to make it as easy as possible for customers to say "yes." First, get to know your customers and make sure you can meet their expectations. Then, to make sure that customers don't drop out in the middle of the sales process, prepare straightforward contracts that customers and your managers can easily sign. Finally, provide excellent service so that customers will come back.

Business Research for Growing Companies

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