Don’t keep your customers waiting. In this article, I want to discuss whether Zero Wait Time is a reality or a myth?
At the gym
I am a fitness freak and prefer to do my workout at the gym in isolation. That’s when you will have all thoughts running from pillar to post in your brain. On a pleasant Saturday afternoon, I noticed a few prospects waiting at the gym to inquire about the Fitness Plans. The front desk, after all the busy morning schedule, had gone for lunch and there was no sign of return anytime sooner. After a long wait, the prospects walked into the gym to check the facilities. They looked satisfied with all those equipment at the gym and made their way to the reception, all again to wait for a few more minutes.
I didn’t even notice when they left. They found their way out before the Front desk arrived.
Do you think the prospects would have come on a later date to enroll themselves for the Fitness plans at the gym? I guess not.
This episode made me think why not write a blog on ‘Why wait times are bad?’.
In this fast-paced world, wait times are excruciating. The queue at the billing counter in supermarkets/hypermarkets, waiting to be seated at a restaurant, a long and an impatient wait before food is served at your table, queue at the Saloon for a haircut or a massage, await at the ATM to withdraw or deposit your money, wait on the phone to talk to a Contact Center agent – the list is endless and there can be many more such examples where customers/consumers do not prefer to wait until their turn. I wouldn’t blame the customer here for his impatience, instead, the business is at stake of losing their customers for not providing a wholesome experience.
“Contact center surveys say that, while in 2014 customers were willing to wait for 13 minutes, in 2017, most customers wait less than 2 minutes. Now, more and more customers expect no hold time. If they don’t get a human, 34% of customers hang up and never call back”.
Is Zero Wait Time a reality or a myth?
Banks have found ways to enhance the customer’s banking experience. Online banking, Mobile banking, Instant Money transfer, cashless pay, etc. – there has been a lot of innovations going on in the banking industry to improvise user experience. Virtual assistants have drastically reduced the wait time at banks and contact centers.
The leaders in business have to come up with innovative and efficient ways in order to enhance the customer experience. You tend to lose a customer if you have made him wait over and above his cut-off time and this time varies from business to business and from person to person. Hence, I would advise following a nearly-zero-wait time for all your customers so as to stay ahead of your competition and establish a long-lasting customer relationship.
How about sharing your thoughts on this?
In today’s world, customers are knowledgeable than we may think. The advancement of technology has made everyone’s life more sophisticated. For a customer-centric and an enthusiastic consultant like me, the need to sell what the customer wants takes a front seat in this ever-competitive market. Businesses need to restructure their sales strategy. The focus should shift to building a long-lasting relationship than being a one-time affair.
Let me share a recent, quite interesting incident that substantiates the above statements and also proves my point that Customer is my primary focus.
I was at this customer place for a software consultation. My job was to help them streamline their activities in tune with the value offered by the product, thereby easing out their daily IT operations. Quite a few minutes into the meeting, I was able to identify that there had been a mismatch in the product edition sold than what was actually needed. All they needed was the basic edition of the software, thanks to the Salesperson who was keen to fill only his bank balance with commissions, the highest edition of the software was sold to them.
For the last couple of years, they have never used the product to its fullest potential. Neither do they have any plans to use the additional features than what was available in the basic edition? After a few rounds s of meeting with the top management and consultation, I helped them with the right choice of the product.
Sales sold what they want
I couldn’t help stop the mockery here but wonder how the customer ended up purchasing a product which they really didn’t need. I wouldn’t be surprised if someone reading my experience points out that the Salesperson was the decision-maker than the customer himself.
This boils down to the next big thing – does the Salesperson stand a chance to sell anything better or bigger to the same customer? The answer is in the negative.
Sell what customers want and build a relationship
The salesperson would have won the customer for life had he/she not been greedy. All that was lacking here was a little bit of patience and deep knowledge of Customer Experience and Satisfaction. The initial trust and relationship built would have actually helped the salesperson earn more than enough in their lifetime than the commission they received for a one-time sale.
To summarise, Customers are looking for people who can don the dual role of problem-solver and project-planner rather than someone who is just keen to fill his bank balance. Therefore, sales should sell the customers what they need, not what you want.
I would like to reiterate the quote below from my previous blog.
“Make a sale, you’ll make a living. Build a relationship, you will create a fortune.”
By developing your relationship-selling skills, you’ll position yourself as a partner who sells value, which will make you stand out from those sales reps who just try to push products down their client’s throats.