At one point or another, your customers will need to wait.
Your customers will wait before, during, and even after their transaction with you.
How you attend to the customer during these three stages will greatly impact their perception of you and their likelihood to purchase from you again.
On a recent family vacation, we went to Disneyland. This self-proclaimed “happiest place on Earth” delivers that promise exactly because they attend to the details at every stage of the waiting game.
Every ride that you go on at Disneyland has an expected wait time posted as you enter the queue to stand in line.
Setting clear expectations with customers up-front reduces any ugly surprises from happening.
Disney crafts the waiting experience to wind you through entertaining landscapes, visuals, and builds up the story of the ride you are about to experience. So even though you are waiting, there is still an element of entertainment.
How can you engage, distract, or entertain the customer while they wait with your business?
Occasionally, rides at Disneyland stop midway through. When this happens, a recorded voice immediately announces that the ride is temporarily stopped and will resume shortly.
If there are delays in your transactions with customers, they will want to know what is going on. Immediately acknowledge the delay, and communicate when things will resume to normal.
Almost every Disney ride we went on finished by sending us through a gift shop that shared the theme of the ride we just finished.
After a customer has completed a transaction with you, it is a great time to upsell the customer on another product and to reinforce the experience they just had.
Total Waiting Experience
Your customers will have to wait before, during, and after transacting with you. If you enhance those interactions with customers by making the wait time less of a burden, you may very well make your business the “happiest place on Earth” for the moments they spend with you.