Making Appointments Online Versus Over the Phone

In the last few weeks, we’ve talked a lot about generational marketing. As a business owner, we want to pay attention to generational data to help complete our target customer’s identity. Knowing who your customer is should be the baseline of every business decision you make, including something as seemingly simple as whether or not your customers will be making appointments online or over the phone.

What Your Customer Wants
Making appointments online has many benefits

Did you know that online user’s expect your website to load within TWO SECONDS of landing on it and will often LEAVE once it hit’s three? Aside from those that shun the internet, what we expect from experience on line is highly reflective of what we expect from every process.

Your customers want easy, convenient, and hassle free. They want what works.

Now of course this blog is hosted by a business that creates online business tools for people like you, so yes, making appointments online makes sense to us. It’s the direction our society is going.

Actually, that’s not accurate. We’ve already arrived in a time where most people, young and old, expect to be able to access and do everything online.

I mean, we are a people that expect to have access to what we are interested in within two seconds and if we don’t we ditch it.

So, when looking at what your customer wants, the answer is very likely to be able to make appointments online.

HOWEVER.

And this however is in all caps and formatted as a header because it’s important. If your process or system for making appointments online isn’t intuitive and therefore doesn’t work, it’s no longer hassle free.

That’s not what your customer’s want and it ends up being bad for your brand and provides poor customer service.

So, if you’re unable to thoroughly research online appointment software and recognize what works for your specific business, then stick with the phone and physical appointment book.

Making appointments online has many benefits

Essentially if the process for making appointments online isn’t simple and fast, then it’s not going to really be better.

What Your Business Needs

Now, assuming you know how to set up and easy to use website and can recognize a good online appointment process for your customer when you see one, then you’ll likely be ditching the over the phone appointment process as your main gig.

This is GOOD for your business, not just your customer, so you should be excited.

Making appointments online has many benefits

Having your customers making appointments online lends a lot of perks for you. Especially if you’re using a software like Georgie Scheduler.

Benefits of using Georgie Scheduler’s online appointment software:
  • Seamless Google integration
  • Secure SOAP notes to keep client notes secure and easily accessed by you.
  • Convenient and controllable appointment times.
  • Excellent marketing capabilities
  • Great customer service tool
  • Links with Georgie Schedulers payment processor
  • …It’s free….

Think about the pain points you’re looking to address with an online appointment process. Are you trying to attract a new customer base? Keep up with your current one? Alleviate some spending of clerical and organizational processes?

Whatever it is, it’s worth looking at finding a way for your customers to start making appointments online instead of over the phone.

Customer Loyalty Program | What & Why

Customer Loyalty Program
First, What’s Customer Loyalty?

Customer loyalty is a customer who chooses to repeatedly buy from the same brand. Typically, it’s  because they trust the brand enough that they don’t look elsewhere, even for a better price.

Why is Customer Loyalty important?

Customer loyalty is essential. If you have customer loyalty that means you’re retaining customers and customer retention is the make it or break it of success.

Depending on your exact industry, it costs 5 to 25% more to acquire new customers than it does to maintain existing customers. Even at 5% you’re working harder than you need to in order to see growth in your business.

Sure you have to bring in new customers to have existing customers, but you NEVER want to only make it ideal for a customer to be new.

Why on earth would a customer stay with you when the only time they felt you valued them was when you were wooing them in the first place? There is too much for you to gain for you to only exist in the chase.

Returning customers spend a whole 67% more than new customers. That’s more than half.

Essentially, you cannot afford to not gain customer loyalty.

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Leveraging Engagement to Increase Customer Retention

Happy Customers means you Increase Customer Retention
Increase Customer Retention through Engagement Monitoring

Usually when you’re being advised on how to increase customer retention, you’re going to be told at least one of two things.

The first, is to have an amazing product that’s worth sticking around for. The second is to have great customer service, helping your customers when they run into problems.

Having a great product is important. It’s what’s going to interest clients in the first place. But, it’s not necessarily going to be the number one factor that keeps them there. Customer service that is actually helpful to your customer is important too. But using this as a tactic to stop a customer from leaving limits the action you take to only happen when customers come to you.

Now, of course, these are both areas you need to be investing in, however they’re simply not enough.

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Why Customer Service is a Marketing Strategy

Every member at every level of your business must have their hand in customer service. It doesn’t matter if they are the intern, the IT guy, or the CEO. This develops a customer-first mindset that leads to a true user culture. In other words, your more concerned about your customer’s experience with your company and your product or service than you are with just improving your product.

Is it important to be ensuring your product is always on it’s A-game? You bet!

But, if you want to increase customer retention along with customer acquisition, this customer service mindset is key. This is because as you focus on this user experience, your attention is on your customer for their entire customer life cycle and even beyond.

Customer Service as Marketing

This is what really makes your customer service strategies an integral part of your marketing.

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How to Increase Bookings through Social Media

Before we get into how to increase bookings, let’s start out with a few facts:

social media share of online time

Then, according to Buffer’s State of Social 2018 Report:

  • 74% of marketers have found social media marketing effective.
  • 90% of marketers have social media marketing listed as a top priority.
  • 78% of marketers have found social media to be their most effective marketing channel, outranking both email and SEO.
So let me ask you something: Do you social media can be leveraged to increase bookings?

(Hint: The answer is HECK YES!)

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5 Bad Customer Service Habits to Fix Today

Stop making these bad customer service mistakes!
Image Source

Maybe not so surprisingly, great customer service seems to be evasive and bad customer service habits run rampant.

If you run a business that requires you to interact with people, then you work in customer service. The best customer service comes through strategy, practice, and an acceptance that sometimes customers won’t be happy with you.

What makes for bad customer service?

MyCustomer’s 2018 customer journey mapping report identifies 5 key habits that are ruining customer experience with businesses.

The top ranking bad customer service habit is causing customers to be passed around through multiple channels or people. Customer’s cite that this can be more frustrating then the issue they had in the first place. If you’ve every dealt with major phone companies, the irritation of this bad habit is pretty obvious!

A bad customer service habit like this makes customers feel like you don’t actually care and are trying to avoid helping them.  Which is pretty much the epitome of bad customer service and a huge killer for customer retention.

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