Having an online store is a serious occupation. You’re in control. You’re a small business that makes a great impact. Doesn’t it feel good to know people love what you created!? Whether it’s handmade goods or a carefully curated boutique, there’s nothing like getting great feedback from a customer who loves you, for you.
Honesty is the best! – Don’t say shipping will take 1-2 weeks if really it takes 4-6 weeks… or more! If a customer contacts you about their missing order, don’t say it’s coming next week when you simply need more time. We both know when “next week” comes around and your customer didn’t get their order, the trust in your business is *POOF* gone.
Always tell the truth and apologize for tardiness, your customers will really appreciate this. Include something extra to make up for it. Leave a note! Customers love a personalized touch to their order. Add a sparkle or a sticker. Hand write a thank you note to show you care! If your customer has an issue with their purchase, this is as opportunity for you to make a lasting relationship with them. When you make strong bonds with people, they will shop with you again, and talk about you to their friends.
Proactive Measures – Send a friendly email or text message to your customer about their order. Never hesitate to let your customer know there is an unexpected delay in their order. Do this BEFORE they contact you about it. Simple sorry notes show that you are aware of the delay, but are fulfilling your promises.
If you’re store is thriving with orders, that’s great! This means you’re getting busy, and you are probably handling everything by yourself. It’s easy to get swamped and lose touch with your customers. However, if you’re too busy to help your customers 24 hours after they email you, get help! Find an assistant who is good at customer service and keep your patrons updated.
The Golden Rule – Treat your customers how you want to be treated! This applies to so many parts of one’s life. But really think about it, we are all consumers in one way or another. If you were your own customer, what would you want? What’s worth your time and money? The easiest way to apply this way of thinking is the way you talk to your customers. This would most likely be through email, so check your language dude!
The most challenging and important time to apply this is when your customer has an issue with your product. Your policy clearly states “no returns”, but this customer is extremely unhappy with their purchase. Those darn shorts just don’t fit. Now this customer is sassy, threatening to tell everyone they know on the internet never to shop with you. How do you handle it? Start with some au naturel empathy. Here are some classic tips for being professional when you just don’t want to!
- Stay calm: Why would you escalate the conflict with equal hostility? My mother always told me; Be the bigger person. This means understanding why someone is acting out, and handling it in a graceful manner.
- It isn’t personal: Don’t take the way the customer feels about the quality of your product or service personally. This way, you can deal with the situation appropriately.
- Then listen: You want to be a business, then you need to have clients. When they have an issue, you need to listen like they are your best friend.
- Empathize: Duh! We have all had problems with making purchases. It is generally accepted that people make mistakes, things can’t always be perfect. It make the situation much more satisfying when a store owner works with you, resolving your issue with empathy and friendliness.
- Apologize: Maybe it isn’t your fault, but it is your responsibility to make the customer feel better about the situation. “I’m so sorry this happened, I would be more than happy to fix this for you”
- Resolve it: Fix the issue and fast. The customer is usually clear about what they want out of their bad experience. It is up to you to find a solution that works best for your customer. Do this in a timely manner before they lose trust in you.
- Reflect: Each customer is an opportunity to build your business a lasting foundation. Take pride in knowing you can handle unhappy customers, that they love you. They really love you.
Take On The Storenvy Manifesto
Owing your own online business on Storenvy means you are following a code of conduct that makes you a great store.We believe each business is capable of holding themselves to high standards; of dignity and responsibility. Thus, we hold all of our hardworking stores accountable for providing the best customer service possible.
1. I will provide my customers with a great experience before, during, and after their order:
2. I agree to make communicating with my customers and the Storenvy staff a top priority. I will make every effort to always respond within 24 hours.
3. I will keep my customers constantly informed about their order’s status including any shipping delays.
4. I will provide accurate shipping & carrier tracking information to my customers on all of their orders.
5. I will present my products and business accurately, professionally, and honestly including clear product photographs, well-written descriptions, & detailed store information.
6. I agree that happy customers build great businesses, and every customer support issue is an opportunity to gain a loyal customer by providing outstanding service.
7. I agree to be a positive and contributing member of the Storenvy community.
8. I commit to selling the most quality products possible.
9. I understand that story & personal touch of my business are of great value to my brand. (We <3 hand-written thank you notes!)
10. I will never stop growing, learning, and improving as a small business owner.