As a business owner, I’m always studying other businesses to understand the value-added services they provide to their customers. It’s the small details that matter.
In my neighbourhood, there is a Tim Horton’s and a Starbucks across the road from one another. Even though Starbucks is twice as much money as Tim Horton’s, I almost always choose Starbucks. It’s not because I’m rich. It’s ONLY because of the value I receive at Starbucks…every single time!
At Starbucks, the employees are happy. They actually smile while working! They are always friendly to the customers. It’s bright and clean inside the building and the Wi-Fi works well. Plus Starbucks likes to email me with special rewards that I can redeem using my Starbucks card.
At Tim Horton’s, it’s dark and gloomy inside the building. The Wi-Fi never works well and as for the employees…they aren’t smiling and they aren’t chatting with the customers. I never feel welcome at Tim Horton’s. They always make me feel like it’s about the quick sale and that I’m really not that important to them.
Price is not a deciding factor. It’s the extra value you provide your customers that make them buy from you!
Here are a few examples of businesses that offer amazing value to their customers:
Fitness Brew –I received a hand written note thanking me for my purchase and if I had any questions, I should contact them.
Blackfriar’s Salon – Chris said, “I appreciate getting reminders about my appointments, and I also appreciate their rewards program. Another thing that makes it so nice is getting pampered there. You really DO get pampered!”
Best Buy – Mary said, “I love Best Buy. I am not tech savvy, in fact, I’m the opposite of that. I love that I can go to the store and ask a technical question and they give me a solution that I can implement. I also go to Staples a lot and know most of the staff. I went in today, they asked what I was looking for and they went with me and got it for me. Love, love, love, great service!”
Westgate Honda – Brenda said, “I am very happy with their service. I bought a new car in August and they have been in touch with me about how I like the car. I completed a survey they sent me and just yesterday, I got an e-mail from the guy that sold me the car wanting to know how it was going, if I liked my new car and if I had any problems or questions I could contact him at any time. Nice of him to be still interested after six months and check in with me.”
Dyson – Peggy said, “I use Dyson for my cleaning services. They may be expensive, but they stand behind their product, they replace faulty products without a third degree and even go beyond their warranty time.”
Old Navy – Rachel said, “They have rewards and their customer service is exceptional. I mean unreal! An order was shipped to my old address which was my fault. I called and explained and they re-sent all the items to my new address. No questions asked – no additional fees paid.”
The business landscape is getting more crowded each year. With the internet and social media, you are no longer competing locally – you’re competing globally – to win and keep your customer’s loyalty.
Value-added services need to be implemented not just with upper management, but your employees need to understand the importance of adding value to every customer they serve. Sometimes we need to start by adding value to our employees work life before it can trickle down to the customers.
I believe 2015 is the year we need to start providing our customers with value. It doesn’t have to be a big gesture. Lasting value are the acts we do from our hearts. Not because we need to…but because we want to.
I would love to hear the businesses that provide a value-added service that makes you keep coming back for more and why!
Photo source: kibsri at FreeDigitalPhotos.net