What is after sales experience? If you google it the first result you see on your screen will be this quote: “A company's after-sales service is all the help and information that it provides to customers after they have bought a particular product”. Well it might be a lot more than that if you ask me. In this article I will try to analyze different factors and tasks that should be well timed and combined to achieve maximum customer satisfaction especially in a B2B environment.
In my opinion after sales experience does not start after the customer bought your product or service. It starts the first time the customer reaches you either in person or through your online presence (Website, email campaign, social media channels etc) when he is still considering and evaluating options regarding his needs. First impression along with the meetings to follow are a key factor for achieving a sale agreement. But also play a significant role in how the customer builds up trust with you to be ensured that he will also have quality after sales service. In simple words the pre-sale experience is simply the foundation of your after sales experience!
It is your best marketing tool. Yes, no matter how much money you spend on TV, radio and press advertisements or in google ads and email campaigns the After Sales service you provide will still be your best marketing tool to grow your portfolio. In my years of experience, I found out that mouth to mouth is the best way your business, service or product can be promoted. Of course, it does not come for free. Actually it costs a lot. You need effort, commitment and personnel dedicated to this task daily. But it worth’s it 100%. There is nothing better than a satisfied customer. He will speak for you when you are not there. Even when you sleep. He can become your salesman and eventually bring you more customers. On the contrary we can all imagine the damage an unhappy client can do when he speaks of you in a negative way.
Immediacy! That is the golden rule for providing a top After Sales experience to your customers. When a customer calls for help he needs it now. Not later today, not within a couple of hours, not in five minutes, he needs it now! And this is the biggest mistake I see companies do. Someone answers the phone only to offer a typical reply to the customer in need that the appropriate person is not available now and his call will be returned at a later stage. Nothing can frustrate your customer more than that. If you want to provide top After Sales, you must respond to all incoming calls the moment the customers reach out for you. Always and immediately!
No matter how good your product or software might be customers will only remember that you have not been there for them the moment they needed you the most. Even if their problem was not so serious after all and they might have found the solution by themselves after five minutes. You were not there to help! And that is the first and possibly the only thing they will tell about you when asked. Or, to make it worse, without even being asked.
Keep calm and be patient! Customers unintentionally will do everything they can to drive you crazy! They don’t want to do it and they don’t know they are doing it. Unless you do go crazy and they realize it. And then of course, it’s once again your fault. They are in trouble, or so they believe. They don’t know what to do. And possibly they don’t want to know. They just want it done. And almost always they are under time pressure. So, they are not calm nor patient by default when they grab the telephone to reach you!
Your support team must always be patient and calm. They might need to offer the same instructions repeatedly. They might have to get involved with aspects that have nothing to do with your service. Especially when it comes to software companies. It’s not enough to have immediacy. You must also have efficiency by providing solutions and satisfaction. So, keep calm, be patient and provide solutions and smiles to the user on the other side of the line. Remember he is your potential salesman.
You want to go the extra mile? Be the one that calls your customer even when they don’t need your help. Just keep in touch. Show your presence to them. Make them feel important. Listen to what they have to say. Ask them for feedback and ideas that could possibly help you improve your products and services. And make them happen!
In BTMS we try hard daily to keep up with all the above and we know we are doing well. We greatly value the importance of offering a top of the edge After Sales experience to our constantly growing portfolio. And that we do. We encourage every new possible customer to browse our customer list and contact any of them to get feedback for our level of professionalism. We are confident that not even one of our customers would have a negative comment or experience to share. And of course, we promise, and we aim to keep it this way in the future!
Sales & Marketing Manager
BTMS Cyprus LTD