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Newsletter #742: The “Save Their Time” Issue

{Welcome back to the Damn, I Wish I Thought of That Email Newsletter. This is text of the great issue all of our email subscribers just received. Sign yourself up using the handy form on the left.}

If you can save your customers’ time, and their hectic schedule, you can be a hero — the type of hero they’ll go out of their way for to do business with again. Here are a few simple opportunities to do it:

1> Remember their order
2> Don’t put them on hold
3> Save their preferences
4> Check it out: Cake Wrecks

1> Remember their order

Save your customers’ time by remembering previous orders to make it easy for a returning customer. When a customer comes back to Great Clips, the stylist looks up the customer in the database and reminds them of their last haircut, asking if they’d like the same thing again. It saves folks looking for a simple trim the hassle of re-explaining how they like their hair, and it gives the stylist a concept to build on if the customer is looking for something different. If an extensive database is more than you need, you could try using a simple spreadsheet to remember your customers’ previous orders and make it easy for them to keep coming back.

The Lesson: When you remember your customer’s order, it not only saves them time, it gives them an extra incentive to place their next order through you.

2> Don’t put them on hold

If someone is calling your customer service department because they’re having problems or need help, making them wait on hold will only make things worse. If you call Southwest at a time when all of their reps are busy, they give you the option of having them call you back. It’s a simple feature that will not only show respect for your customers’ time, but it’s also a little perk that can put callers in a better mood before they get on the line with your support staff.

The Lesson: Take a look at your customer service processes and make sure they’re not creating unnecessary frustration for customers who are already upset.

3> Save their preferences

Beyond the traditional purchase data (quantity, size, color, etc.), save time for the customer by taking the extra time on your end to remember all of their preferences. Think like the Ritz-Carlton, who employs a “guest historian” charged with remembering all the tiny details, down to how they like their beds made and what to stock in the mini bar. A simple spreadsheet tracking any special notes about your customers will do wonders for both saving them the trouble of repeating their preferences each time they come in — as well as helping make them feel special.

The Lesson: Saving all the little details will make your customers feel fantastic — all while making it easier and faster to shop with you repeatedly.

4> Check it out: Cake Wrecks

For a collection of unintentionally sad, silly, creepy and inappropriate cakes, check out Cake Wrecks. You’ll find lots of examples of cakes of awkward design, cakes with unfortunate typos, and cakes that are just plain strange.

Check it out: Cake Wrecks

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