In a highly competitive business environment, sticking out from the crowd and finding your unique advantage becomes a necessity. Each business wants to leverage their product or service’s particular advantage so that they can gain more customers and continue to grow. However, as the economy has fallen, customers have become more reluctant to part with their money. In today’s business world, you must go beyond focusing on your product or service – you must instead begin to focus on the customer.
Customer service is a quality many businesses claim to possess, but as we all know from our experiences as consumers, truly great customer service is hard to find. Point of sale (POS) software can help you provide that outstanding level of service customers long for.
Point of sale refers to the actual point where and when a business transaction takes place. An easy reference is to think of the point of sale as the checkout. POS software and hardware refer to the actual devices and technologies that make the transaction possible at the point of purchase.
It’s been suggested that there are four important levels of customer service, each increasing in value. Here we will see how POS software data can help you achieve each one.
Level One: Meet Customer Expectations
This is the most basic level of customer service. If someone comes into your store expecting to purchase something, you must provide the staff and expertise to help assist in the purchase in a reasonable amount of time, or the customer will get frustrated and leave. POS Software data can help you see when most of your sales are occurring and what departments they are occurring in so you can staff appropriately. Further, your staff will be more efficient in their transactions if they are using an intuitive POS interface.
Level Two: Exceed Customer Expectations
This level is where you start to build customer loyalty. When service happens faster than expected, or is more personable than expected, customers leave your store pleased and are much more likely to return. They may even be willing to pay slightly higher prices. POS data can assist with this by storing customer information, so that the customer doesn’t have to provide as much information on return visits. You can also train your staff to use stored information to make a visit more personal, such as by using a customer’s name in the interaction.
Level Three: Delight the Customer
This level is where you show customers that you really care about them as people. POS data can provide the way to do that, for instance by showing recent purchases so that your staff can ask how they are doing with the last product they purchased from you, and if they have any concerns. You can also use personal information, such as birthdate or anniversary date, to send special appreciation cards and coupons to your customers, congratulating them and inviting them into your store for a special deal.
Level Four: Amaze the Customer
Very few businesses ever reach this level. This is a level of customer service where the customer is amazed by the kindness and clarity of service, and is likely to develop a strong bond to your store and tell their friends about it also. If you can provide repeated amazing experiences, many customers will refuse to shop elsewhere regardless of price.
To give this kind of amazing service, use your POS data to learn as much about each customer’s shopping patterns as possible. Train your staff to provide highly personalized service with each visit, using the customer name and asking about previous purchases. Staff can also offer special deals on items the customer buys often, and ask the customer for input about making improvements to that product or service. If you include the customer as a member of your business, and treat them with deep personal respect, you will definitely amaze them and gain their loyalty for future business.
Customer service is something many businesses claim to have but few actually possess. POS software and proper staff training can go a long way to helping you develop the type of amazing customer service that keeps customers coming back and bringing their friends with them.
About the Author
Cashier Live is one of the industry’s top developers of desktop and mobile small business POS software. Cashier Live provides specialized solutions in bicycle shop, pharmacy, and even grocery store POS software, aiming to provide each customer with the most tailored solution for their business. For those that are thinking about improving their business with POS software, Cashier Live offers a 30 day trial of free POS software on their website.