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customer service

Love Your Returns!

I hated returns when I was in the catalog business. I viewed returns, not without reason, as margin-killing time-wasters. The returned merchandise was often unsellable due to customer damage, missing items, or shopworn packaging. I had…

Replies Can Change Customer Minds

It's axiomatic that you find out how good a business really is when it has already screwed up once; the speed and nature of the fix show the firm's true nature. After shipping you the wrong item, do they just offer to refund your return…

Hire Happy People!

Want your customers to have a better experience? Instead of trying to train your employees to smile, just hire happy people. Apparently, you don't have to be an expert in reading faces to tell the difference between a real smile and a…

Bit Pickles & Fuzzy Olives

In The Million Dollar Pickle (retitled after a reader suggested the original title When Stories Don't Sell wasn't that good), I retold a story about how a single bad customer service experience turned a business author and speaker into a…

Differentiate or Die

Book Review: Differentiate or Die by Jack Trout (Second Edition) If someone asked you what set your product or brand apart from the competition, would you answer "quality" or "customer orientation?" If your answer is "yes," you might be in…

Customer Satisfaction: Time is Precious

Today, there is a big emphasis on productivity in sales and customer service. Increasingly, customers are given tools to place their own orders, check on their status, and so on. In-person sales calls cost hundreds of dollars (some…