Why Local Customer Service is Vital for your Business Success

31 May 2016 / Freeparking Team / Customer Loyalty Customer Experience

It’s often hard for small businesses to compete with big international companies offering customers a one-stop-shop at cheaper prices. While your services or products may not be as cheap as your online competitor, there is one aspect of your business you can focus on to standout and that’s local customer service.

Good customer service may seem an obvious thing, but it’s remarkable just how many small businesses fail to realise just how vital it is for your brand’s success.

Local customer service builds customer loyalty

No doubt as a customer, you would have spoken to a consultant who is based offshore on the other end of a helpline. There’s often a delay in response, a foreign accent and a lack of local knowledge. It may be a financial saving for a business to have its customer service based somewhere else around the world, but it does nothing to build customer loyalty.

When you provide local customer service, there is a better chance for you to connect with your consumers. Customers want to know that you genuinely care about them and any issues they might have. They want to relate, to have an honest conversation and to not feel they’re just another number.

Caring for your local community creates a positive brand image

Businesses who build a presence in the local community create a positive brand image as a result. Locals appreciate small businesses contributing to growth of their community and being available to interact with face-to-face.

Caring for your local community can also extend into your marketing strategy across your social media platforms, blogs or e-newsletters. By showing an interest in what’s happening in your business’ areas, customers are more likely to remember you, and to shop with you when they’re looking for the services or products you provide.

Good local customer service generates positive word of mouth

Being available to your customers whether it’s online or on the phone when they have questions or a problem will help you connect with your customer base. Showing that you care and that you’re there to help, will result in happy customers.

Happy customers are much more likely to recommend your business to their friends and family. They’re also more likely to engage with you on your social media platforms, increasing your visibility and reach. Positive word of mouth can save you in marketing efforts and $$$.

Tips to become active in your local community

Connecting with your local community and providing good customer services is a great way to build a positive reputation for your business. Here are just some of the ways you can become active in your local community and enhance your local customer service:

  • Brief and inform your staff on the local area
  • Adopt a local charity that supports a good cause
  • Sponsor a local sporting team
  • Host workshops, Q&A sessions or seminars
  • Be active on your social media, highlighting local events or achievements
  • Have a presence at a local event like an art exhibition, cultural festival or school fete

As a small business, you have the opportunity to engage with your customers on a more intimate level than big global business. You can easily voice that you care, that you’re invested and that you appreciate their loyalty.

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