Category Archives:Membership

Membership Tip – The advantage is . . . YOU!

The independent retail owner has an advantage over the “big box” or big regional chain and there is power in knowing it and using it.
The advantage is . . . YOU!

As the owner of your retail business, nobody can be you, the owner, the caller of the shots, the “buck stops here” person. You determine how you want customers to be treated and when you want to change course. That’s a powerful position to be in. So here is a quick course in Customer Service. You already know this and it’s not new to you, but it may be “packaged” in an easier to use way.
The 10 most important words: “I apologize for our mistake. Let me make it right.”
The 9 most important words: “Thank you for your business. Please come back again.”
The 8 most important words: “I’m not sure but I will find out.”
The 7 most important words: “What else can I do for you?”
The 6 most important words: “What is most convenient for you?”
The 5 most important words: “How may I serve you?”
The 4 most important words: “How did we do?”
The 3 most important words: “Glad you’re here.”
The 2 most important words: “Thank you.”
The 1 most important word: “Yes.”
From the book 180 Ways to Walk the Customer Service Walk.
-HFA Membership Team
Our only business is your success.
We are here to help, so make a call to (800) 422-3778, option 1 or email us.

Membership Tip: Telephone Calls are Ups, Too – Don’t Waste Them!

Callers are customers, too.

You’ve given thought to how customers who come in your store are to be greeted and cared for while in your showroom, but what about the potential customers who call your store?
While a lot of information gathering is done electronically, there are still people who will call your store. You need to give some thought to or revisit how telephone calls are handled in your business. To determine how much needs to be done, call your store. You may be surprised by how your company is being presented to potential customers.
If you find that your process needs some fine-tuning, here’s a check list for your consideration:
1. Put on your “friendly, helpful hat” as you end whatever conversation you have going on before you pick up the phone. It’s seems as if the call is an interruption if the end of a conversation can be heard as the phone is answered.
2. Smile and say something like “Good morning, Fabulous Home Furnishings Company, this is John.” You give the caller a minute to realize their call has been answered with your greeting, and you remind them who they called by stating your company name and then your name. Speak slowly so you can be understood and purposefully because you want the caller to know that answering their call is the most important thing you have on your mind in that moment.
3. There is no need for “How may I help you?” The caller knows why they called and you don’t want to distract them from your name. As they remember your name you can start building a relationship that will lead to conversations about lots of home furnishings solutions that they need and that you can provide.
4. The way you handle your callers is worth your thought and consideration. Once you have created a process, shared the process and practiced it, then periodically check to see that it is being followed. Your callers will thank you and your business will reflect the care that you give all the business that comes your way.
While we are at it, what is your process for online inquiries? These leads are just as important as the in-store customers and on-the-phone customers.

If you need help, contact your HFA staff.
-HFA Membership Team
Our only business is your success.
We are here to help, so make a call (800) 422-3778, option 1 or email to us be one of the first things you do when working on your business.