I get questions from small businesses all the time because I’ve been in web design and development since the mid 90s. They always want to know what I feel is the key to success for a small business. I always sum it up in one single word… Responsive.
Companies get into business with the best intentions and they have a goal to provide top-notch service. But then they miss out on the most simple opportunities to please customers/clients and prospective new business partners.
I have always tried to respond to requests and inquiries the same day. You would be shocked how slow some companies respond. In fact, I get a lot of new business from companies who are tired of being ignored and for slow service. I have heard from companies that many companies actually can take up to two weeks to make a simple text edit. We at RooSites many times respond within minutes. I don’t put things off, and it makes clients happy. This seems so elementary, right? Yes it does, and that is why I say responsive is the keyword you need to remember.
I recently had an inquiry from company looking for a specific service. I wrote to a guy I did business with many years ago to see if he be interested as he was perfect for the job. Unfortunately I didn’t hear back for days. I also left a voicemail and I texted him. It is beyond me why somebody looking to give you business would be ignored. These are the same people that complain to you how tough it is in business these days. I always find it intriguing that people aren’t responsive yet whine about a a lack of business.
Being responsive is the easiest thing you can do.
Now this works both ways. Sometimes I’ll get a question from a prospective customer and reply right away. Sometimes I won’t hear back at all, even when I follow up. This too is not OK as this leaves a bad taste in someone’s mouth and they’ll probably never hire you or refer you, which is so important in today’s business world.
I had a former colleague tell me that they thought I replied too quickly and I set a bar too high, and people would always expect such great service.
Good I say!
It is funny, when companies leave me which doesn’t happen too often thankfully they’re always expecting a new provider to give the same service.
I recently had a nonprofit decide move to a provider offering cheaper hosting and support services. They were just trying to save money and went with the cheapest possible hosting solution. I won’t name the company, but you know the one; They put 50,000 sites on the server and then people wonder why the performance is terrible and it crashes all the time. Well within three days of transferring, I went to the site to make sure it was up and running and what do you know, it had crashed. White screen of death. Now as it was a WordPress site, I know exactly what happened. Updates came in and they made them without backing up the site and it crashed. Now with my hosting solution, I back up every single day so even if this happens I can get the site back up and running within 30 seconds. As it has now been over five days, I know they’re having trouble. Sad, but cheap does not always equate to good! They do a good job of covering how price isn’t always the best deal in the Forbes Magazine article When The Lowest Price Is Not The Best Deal.
I would just like to reiterate that it can be very simple to please customers/clients. Respond quickly, NEVER ignore inquiries. When asked for your support, put yourself in the shoes of your customer, get the work down. This will help your company grow and succeed. Everyone likes to recommend companies that provide good service. Be That Company!!