Send and deliver

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

We all know that good customer service goes beyond the initial sale. But, this is particularly true if you run a mail order company or use the Internet to sell your goods.

When expecting purchases to arrive by post, customers often put ‘safe delivery’ and ‘speed of service’ up there with ‘cost’ and ‘quality’. So, it’s important that you choose the right delivery options for you – and your customers.

You want your buyers to be pleased with their goods and satisfied with the ‘shopping’ experience. You also want them to come back to you again. The last thing you need is for them to feel disgruntled because something hasn’t arrived when you said it would.

The key to this is in clear communication. Here’s how you can keep your customers happy and confident that you can deliver:

  • Manage customers’ expectations – be upfront and crystal clear about your delivery services on your website or in your catalogue. Be explicit about expected delivery times. Don’t promise a ‘tomorrow’ service if you can’t guarantee it, this will only disappoint people.

  • Specify postage costs – say whether shipping costs are included in your product prices or not. If not, state what the exact postage costs for different items and destinations are.

  • Find out what people want from your service – ask your customers what’s important to them. For example – speed, signing for items on arrival, good packaging, shipping costs. You can then offer a range of services (and prices) that will suit differing needs.

  • Offer a tracking service – either offer your customers a tracking facility via your website or do it for them by sending email updates on where their order is at. This way they’ll know when to expect their goods. And it’s always nice to receive a message saying your goods are on their way.

  • Say if there’s going to be a delay – if items are delayed for any reason you must let your customers know. They might be a little annoyed but they will appreciate you getting in touch with them. A quick email or short phone call is all it takes. Better that than leaving your customers to pace up and down at the garden gate.

  • Package up parcels properly – no one wants to receive a damaged item that’s poking out the packaging. Ensure your service team knows how to package and wrap parcels properly.

  • Depending on the type and amount of products you sell, you may need to use a range of delivery services to get your goods safely and securely from A to B.

Remember, some delivery companies specialise in delivering certain types of goods to certain locations. Others, like New Zealand Post, offer a wide range of sending options within New Zealand and overseas.

To find the right sending solution, take a look at our range of ParcelPost products.

Does your business provide outstanding customer service? Tell us what you do. Post your comments below.