Apple has figured out that people do business with companies with good products, good customer service and an experience they enjoy.
I came across this article in Forbes that outlines the steps Apple associates take to deliver superior customer service.
Make them happy - well that is a basic of course. However, the stores are a fun place to be and the associates work to make the visit an overall enjoyable one. Apple employees are trained how to treat customers at every possible interaction from the minute they walk in the store.
Technical expertise is critical of course but personality, communication and interpersonal skills are just as important. Here are the components to their 'secret sauce' in the recipe, contributing to their tremendous success.
- Approach customers with a personalized, warm welcome.
- Probe politely to understand the customer’s needs (ask closed and open-ended questions).
- Present a solution for the customer to take home today.
- Listen for and resolve any issues or concerns.
- End with a fond farewell and an invitation to return.
With slight modifications, these can apply to almost any business. I particularly like the last one. Every interaction is an opportunity to sell. A 'no' today is not a 'no' forever. Planting seeds for future business as you never know.
Have you had a good experience at the Apple store? Anything you learned that you could transfer to your own interactions with your customers?