Lately I’ve been ranting about customer service. Let me tell you something that “technology” can’t do for your service department. Replacing people with online forms and automated emails eliminates the opportunity to sell more of your stuff.
 
What? Sure thing. Have you ever heard of FREE SHIPPING?
 
OK. My 6 month old computer dies and it needs to visit the repair depot to have my data lost even though only the video card has failed. The company will happily install a new video card and send the computer back but they cannot guarantee the safety of my data. They won’t even guarantee I’ll get the same computer back (true story)—but I will get the same model.
 
It takes a couple of calls to India to arrange my repair in Texas. We have to go through a lot of silly “procedures” on the phone before the company will agree to fix the broken computer. That’s okay, I have lots of time to spare because my computer has saved me hours and hours over the past 6 months.
 
Now here’s the really stupid part. The company is paying for shipping—usually both ways. I’d really like to upgrade the memory and I’d love an external USB Backup Drive.
 
Hey guess what! Since my computer is going to be in the shop, how about we (them) add some memory and throw a USB Drive in the box—we’ll give you 10% off and you’ll get FREE SHIPPING because we have to ship your computer back to you anyway.
 
That makes way too much sense.
 
Your telescope needs repair? Have you tried the new WizzWam 8mm eyepiece? Here’s a chance to get one with FREE SHIPPING. I can put one in the box when we ship your telescope back. (The Cemax Barlow comes to mind…wonder why?)
 
I have a mail order coffee business. Don’t be surprised if I put a bonus in with your order. Because I use Flat Rate Priority Shipping, if there’s room in the box, I get to send you something with FREE SHIPPING!
 
Is your service department making sales or is that just too hard to “track”? If you’re walking away from sales because you don’t care to figure out a way to coordinate repair with sales…
 
Shameless Promotion: We can find a way to turn your complaint department into a money making machine. Let’s do it!
 
Chris Reich, Author of TeachU’s Business Talk Blog