Virtually Anything

The Importance Of Customer Service

Posted by collinsadmin on March 10, 2007

Today I was trying to order some supplies at Vistaprint.com and of course my internet and computer decided they didn’t want to work for me (who can blame them considering it has been in the single digits in my neck of the woods). I was trying to place the order and I got all the way to the point where they were asking for my billing address and payment information and then the next step was to complete my order. So I verified all that and clicked the button to complete order, but instead of completing my order it went back to the shipping and billing information page. So I thought well, maybe I didn’t do something right so I clicked continue and then went to complete order again. I then clicked the accept order button and low and behold it went back to the billing and shipping page again.

I was a little annoyed at this time but I was more concerned that I was going to get billed double so I looked at the contact us page and found the phone number to call them. So I call them once I get through the menu options (boy are those annoying no matter what company it’s for) and I reach a real live voice (WOO HOO a real live voice) and she couldn’t have been nicer and more courteous to me. She had my problem solved, and my order ordered in a matter of maybe 10 minutes. Needless to say, I will use their services again and won’t hesitate to tell everyone I know about the great service I received.

On the flip side, I can remember a well known company that I had to contact their customer service and it was just awful.

I got a bill in the mail saying that I was a month behind and I was like oooh crap. So I took a look at my check register and see that I wrote it out and I looked to make sure that I mailed it which I did. I then got online and looked to see if that check had cleared and it had before the bill was due. So I called this company and after not being able to get to a real live person for at least 15 minutes due to their “menu options” (trust me I was livid by then). I did finally get a real live person and explained to them that the check cleared, what the check number was, the day it cleared and so on and so forth. They argued with me and told me that they never received it. So I tried talking to that customer service representative until I was blue in the face and finally I had had enough so I asked to talk to the supervisor.

The supervisor then proceeds to tell me that there was nothing they could do. I mean come on, they had to have some kind of evidence that I paid the bill with all the computers and things out there right. So finally she says, “if you can get me a copy of the check and fax it to me and also the date it cleared” she would fix it. Well, in this computer age, I don’t get copies of my checks that have cleared anymore. To make a long story short I got the check faxed it to them and then called her back. Then to top it all off, they were going to charge me a $3.00 late fee. A late fee after I just proved that it wasn’t late. I know, I know $3.00 isn’t that much but if they charge 1000 customers $3.00 when their payment isn’t late that is a total of $3000 that they just got from unknowing customers.

So why am I going on and on about this? Basically, because you just can’t put enough emphasis on how important customer service is. Sure, we are outsourcing our customer call centers overseas because it’s cheaper to pay them but whatever happened to helping out our fellow man? Has money become such an issue in this country and this world that bigger corporations don’t care about how their clients (customers) feel just as long as they are getting a good deal with their employees.

I had a client contact me about doing some work for him, unfortunately I didn’t have the skills he needed but instead of blowing him off and saying he is out of luck it became my personal mission to find him somebody that could do that work for him. I found somebody too. I didn’t gain anything from it (well, I did get a referral). More than anything though, I had the satisfaction of knowing I helped out somebody and provided good customer service to them. Hopefully when they get to a point in their business where they need my services they will think of me because I helped them without asking for anything in return.

So honestly, would you rather take the extra couple of minutes and provide good customer service or would you rather be a big grump and not care about your clients? I would rather take the extra couple of minutes not only to gain customers but for my own personal satisfaction knowing that I helped.

Thanks for reading,

Tracy Collins

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