A customer is someone who buys products (goods or services) from a shop or an enterprise organization. Customer support is the provision of service being provided by owner to customers before, during and after a purchase of any product. According to Turban et al. (2002), "Customer service is a series of activities made to enhance the level of customer satisfaction - that is, the sensation that a product or service has met the client expectation. " Additionally it is the process of assisting another person or persons who buys goods and services from a shop. It can be provided either directly by a sales or service rep or through automatic means like internet sites. The second option means provides 24x7 services to customers. However according to the review conducted by National Retail Groundwork (NRF) along with North american Express in 2004, Just 16 percent of traditional consumers were extremely satisfied with their latest customer support experience while yet another 51 percent were very satisfied. In contrast, In comparison, 44 percent of online shoppers were extremely content with their customer service experience and an additional 45 percent were very satisfied. Much of the profits of most businesses rely on duplicate custom. According to the marketing theory, it costs as much to get ONE new client concerning keep FIVE existing ones.
Qualitative customer service is nearly always identified among the key success factors for a small and medium organization (SME). Any business where the total number of employees is less than 500 is called a small business enterprise. However different countries provide different meanings for a SME. Any business, especially a tiny business, needs do it again customers to endure. To do this, a business needs to offer excellent customer service. Great customer support is vital to help small businesses attract and wthhold the customers they have to survive and compete against the big young boys, and more so in a downturn current economic climate (Isabel M. Isidro: 2007). Your small business owner has to hire an authorized to recognize and analyse the quality of its customer support (Kathy: 2008). This third party had to carry out inspections and show its results with the personnel and the employees of the SME frequently. When employees know about such programs they will perform better leading to the competitive benefits for the SME over its large counterparts.
Generally smaller businesses often complain that they cannot really compete with larger firms due to large level of economies to range being relished by the second option. Large firms can afford to purchase recycleables and stock over a scale that a tiny business could never afford. However if they are able to offer better and much more personal customer service than a large multinational organization, they may easily enjoy the advantages of competitive advantage. The customer service in a small and medium business should be able to achieve the following for the business it supports:
Quick turnaround - If the business owner is able to promptly make contact with the customer, say within a day, this means that the SME is well coming to earning the customer's seal of approval. The customers should know that the need has been attended to by way of a live person, not by an automatic mail responder.
Trustworthiness - A SME should always create an impression that its products are very much regular in terms of quality and price. This will create customer devotion and brand commitment, as well.
Flexibility - Customer support provided by way of a SME should assure that complaints are dealt with accordingly and will be addressed with advantageous outcome. For example, customers may easily return a faulty product that may be replaced without headaches.
Real-time discussion - Every SME should comprehend that always customers like to call any business and speak to a live person. In case a SME provides a fantastic advantage of customer support during and even after office hours, then it'll create a leading edge to it over its opponents.
The need for customer service is determined as very rigorous in service industry in comparison with other companies. Normally its importance varies by product, industry and customer. Even the quality and the nature of providing customer support from company to company in service industry. Some service-oriented companies permit the exchange of defective or broken products often only with a receipt and in just a specified timeframe and some others may have calm policies to the exchange. Retail stores will often have a office or counter devoted to dealing with comes back, exchanges and issues, or will perform related functions at the point of sale. Regarding to Micah Solomon quoted in Inc. Magazine, the recognized success of such connections being dependent on employees "that can modify themselves to the personality of the guest. According to the review done by the NRF Base in 2004, for traditional shops, employees and the store environment are the most important aspects of customer support. For online shopping, security and on-time delivery are the greatest customer service concerns. In case there is anatomist services companies, customer support plays an important role within an organization's ability to create income and revenue. From that point of view, customer support should be included within an overall approach to systematic improvement. A person service experience can change the entire notion a customer has about the business and such understanding creates a competitive benefit for a SME over its large counterparts.
Similarly the customer service in hospitality and tourism industry is vital to construct customer and brand devotion which will lead to expansion of the business. The customers will generally choose to choose other hotels because they are afraid of having a bad trip. Therefore in such a case, providing good customer service more than the expectations of the clients leads to considerable reputation, growth in sales and the nice rating in the competitive market. The customer service in virtually any service-oriented company provides significant amount of sales, return visits by the customers and the very effective word of mouth advertising. In case there is an e-commerce company, there's a need of putting a little extra attention into customer service. The more content customers the company has, the simpler it'll be for it to grow. Therefore the prior concentration should be on the implementation of the right strategy and hiring the right customer service team. Therefore a SME owned by any group of service industry should focus on increasing efforts to improve its customer service and to measure it every once in awhile so that proper and immediate procedures can be studied if there are any deviations in its customer service. The SME should properly design its customer support policy and apply it with great deal of caution. While offering the customer service, the venture has to identify the obstacles, if any, and the effective steps for removing them. In order to create an effective and profitable performance of any SME, the customer service is the backbone.
The last couple of years were very challenging for business owners. One of the primary issues, besides just staying in business, is how to maintain a competitive advantage. Many small and medium companies had to lower their prices in which to stay business, but it offers led to having very lean margin for business come back. And they often need more customers to make the same amount of money that they used to make. Generally in most circumstance, most companies cannot secure more customers credited to insufficient trained staff and ignorance towards customer support when interacting with customers. A couple of more Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) companies those are set up lately to contend with Multinational Organizations (MNCs) in the market. Other than dealing with technologies to contend with the best players, SMEs are also have been facing many issues in order to remain at competitive edge. In business today, majorities of the customers wanted to be cured with esteem. Companies that provide poor customer support have resulted with many disgruntled customers. And many of these companies have vanished out of business because of their poor customer service. In view of the context, the importance of customer service in small and medium enterprises is determined and the analysis on the same is undertaken to comprehend the execution of customer service in SMEs to exercise competitive advantages over their competition.
Based on the condition statement as described above, the target in this study is to learn whether by giving good customer services can perform towards competitive advantages for companies.
To find out if providing good customer services can perform competitive advantage for companies.
To determine ranking of the required criteria for successful execution of customer services
Identify the obstacles for implementation of customer services
To determine the performance of customer services in the company
To identify as to what extent of customer service implementation can lead to improvements and provide significant benefits to the company.
In any country, small and medium businesses as a rule have limited budgets but there is certainly one area they can contend head to head with big companies. The area offers best and qualitative Customer service. Based on the literature study, 35% of the top organizations do not react to e-mails dispatched by their customers. That's where smaller businesses can outshine their bigger counterparts. Regardless of the size of a SME, customer service remains a major differentiator that levels the learning field. Just how customers and their issues are being handled by the business makes all the difference in making a competitive advantage. There's a standard norm that in any organization, on the average if a customer has a good experience he/she will inform around 3 people. But if it eventually ends up being a unsatisfactory one, it's not only unlikely he will return, however the often embellished account of his poor experience will be relayed to as much as 10 people. Those 10 people are highly more likely to complete it on again, and so forth, resulting in a huge wave of negative promotion. It's the service that customers keep in mind. It's the service that earns an establishment a reputation. . . good or bad. It is also the service that makes customers return again and again. Therefore a SME should be careful in offering this important customer service to its existing and/or potential customers. In case the SME manages well in providing high quality customer service to its customers, it'll lead to competitive benefit over large enterprises therefore which the success of the tiny and medium enterprise is possible in the competitive market.