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Impacts of Customer Service and Sales Techniques

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    REPORT TO ASSESS THE POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE IMPACTS OF CUSTOMER SERVICE AND SALES TECHNIQUES 1. 0 TERMS OF REFERENCE: I have been asked to produce a report to assess the positive and negative impacts of the customer service and sales techniques of my selected organisation. The organisation I will be looking at is Clarks. 2. 0 PROCEDURE: In order to obtain the relevant information, I followed the following procedures: 2. I will be using my previous assignment P3 role play which was based on the organisation Dixons, and M3 report which was based on Clarks. 2. 2 In order to obtain all the information I will also be using the BTEC National Business Book 2 as well as the internet. This will help me to evaluate the distribution process and conduct this report. 3. 0 FINDINDGS: 3. 1 In any organisation customer service is essential, as it covers all the activities that affect the customer’s experience of dealing with an organisation which is Clarks.

    This covers the impressions created by the staff, appearance and the training of staff members as well as including how well customer’s needs and preferences were satisfied. By offering a high level of good customer service will not only add value to the products it will enable them to raise the prices while ensuring customer’s loyalty. By giving good customer service it will have positive effects on a business, not just in terms of keeping customers from jumping to rivals as Clarks can create an emotional barrier to prevent customers switching to a competitor.

    More over another benefit is brand loyalty by giving a customer good service it tends to bring repeat custom, as customers feel positive about the experience they have had with the organisation so they are more likely to come back and make future purchases. Hanging on to existing customers is crucial for Clarks as trying to attract customers from rivals tends to be costly as promotion offers and advertising may be needed. Another benefit of customer service is word of mouth promotion, by giving good customer ervice can generate free promotion as happy and satisfied customers will tell friends and family, this is one of the most effective promotional tool available to a business this is because customers are more likely to believe there friends and family than the business itself. The last benefit I will be discussing is increased efficiency, as good customer service is including better advice to customers, firms are less likely to sell inappropriate products or services that fail to meet the customers’ needs. This will therefore lead to a reduced amount of customer service back up, such as customer complaint and returns. . 2 Although customer service has many positive impacts, it can also have negative impacts the main problem for retailers such as Clarks is the need of consistency in delivering the service levels demanded by customers. Some of the factors which prevent the consistency levels are as followed; staff members sometimes lack the commitment and motivation to deliver high customer service standards, this is a negative impact on the business as customers will not want to come back if the staff members d not perform.

    If staff members are not motivated, this will lead to them not putting in the effort to try and make the organisation successful. Clarks have bonuses for staff members this therefore keeps them motivated and want to work hard, so that they can get a good bonus at the end of the month. Another disadvantage is high staff turnover adversely affects standards, with staff constantly learning the job as well as moves to reduce staff costs will affect the training and development of staff.

    This is a disadvantage as staff must be trained well in order to give the best customer service possible, Clarks ensure all the staff members are trained in all sectors of shoes, shoe care products as well as handbags. 3. 3 Customer relationship management refers to how an organisation builds long-standing relationships with a customer, as well as maintain and enhancing customer relationships.

    There are two different approaches I will be firstly discussing the relationship marketing approach, this approach tends to be more about generating repeat sales and customer interaction, thus focusing on bringing value to the customer and assuring a long term performance and service, all aspects of quality become major concerns. By doing this, it is an advantage on the business as it is important to focus on the customers, so that they feel that they are important and so that they know that staffs are there to help so that they have a pleasurable shopping experience.

    If they have a good experience and are happy with the service given they will therefore come back as well as recommend Clarks to family and friends. The relationship marketing approach has different factors which are beneficial for consumers such as they emphasis on product benefits, so they will look at how the product can benefit the consumer for example Clarks have a wide range of shoes, such as K shoes which are shoes that come in a wider fitting so that consumers, that have wide feet have an option.

    This is a product benefit, which has been looked into to benefit the consumer. Relationship marketing approach also has a high emphasis on customer service and customer commitment, which is the two most important factors of the approach as it will make every customer feel special, as they are treated the same, with respect and politeness.

    Clarks staff pay attention to all customers and will find out what the customers preferences are, by the staff member giving the customer attention it may lead to them spending more time within the store and having a conversation with a staff member and having a closer look at the range of products Clarks provide, this can lead to a multiple sale of a pair of shoes, hand bag and even shoe care products. This will be a good sale for the business as well as the customer leaving the store happy and satisfied with the service given.

    Quality is a priority concern especially ones that impact on customers buying experience, as they would not want to damage the image of customer service to their consumers. Clarks also ensure regular customer contact without expecting an immediate sale, they do this by emailing consumers letting them know of new products which have arrived as well as any special promotions, and this will keep the relationship between the customers. 3. Furthermore the second approach of customer relationship management I will be discussing is the transactional approach which is more concerned with tempting the customer for a one off purchase, this focuses strongly on price and short term benefits and product performance with limited service. Referring back to my selected organisation Clarks they do not use this approach as focussing on a single transaction will not be beneficial in the ong run so it is important to build a solid relationship with the customer to ensure they return, like the relationship marketing approach. This approach also only emphasis on product features and not how it will benefit the consumer. Transactional approach has limited customer commitment as well as customer service, this is a negative approach as consumers will only come in to get what they need, and if the service given is not good they will not return and may even tell friends and family not to shop there.

    This approach does have some form of customer contact however if this occurs there is an expectancy of a sale, this is once again not a good approach to take as customers should be regularly contacted to let them know about any offers and promotions the business has in order to see if customers are interested and would like to have a look, this is done in the relations marketing approach. 3. 5 Lastly I will be discussing the selling skills, these enable staff members to identify and select the product information that will appeal to the buying motive of the customer.

    My selected organisation Clarks has six steps of selling which will help the process of customer service and bringing in a sale. They are trained and told how to sell efficiently in order to give the best possible service as it is important for customers to be given attention. The first step is prospecting which is when the customer shows an interest in a product, this will therefore crate a new sales lead. They may show they have an interest by looking at the product or picking the product up and having a further look.

    The second step is the initial contact, this is when a staff member from Clarks will have a conversation will create a relationship with the customer by asking basic questions, this will not only make the customer feel like the staff member is interested but also help get the information needed to determine if this will be a potential sale or not. Following on the next step is sales presentation this is when the staff member must take all the information gained and helps the customer with the preference given in order to meet the requirements.

    This moves onto the fourth step which is handling objectives, this may be when the customer already has the product shown, in order to keep the customer the staff member must ensure they can show the customer an alternative product similar to the style they are looking for, in this case negotiation may take place and a good sales person will have to pitch and give the product benefits to the customer, as they may not be happy with an alternative. Once the customer is satisfied and they indicate that they are ready to purchase, this will move on to the following step which is closing the sale.

    This will include specific questions about where they will pay and may be about affordability, customer may also look at a handbag which Clarks have in store that matches the shoes the customer is purchasing as well as shoe products to keep them long lasting. The last step is follow up and after sales services, a good after sale service will help build up a long lasting relationship with the customer and it is always good to have a positive supportive attitude with the customer and thank them for coming in and say have a good day. . 6 By doing the six steps stated above it can be very beneficial for Clarks some of the benefits for the company are that they can gain repeat businesses, the reputation of the business stays high which leads to a great word of mouth and customers will recommend Clarks for not only the comfort of the products but also the service given and lastly customer loyalty.

    However the disadvantage of doing the steps above may be that if staff do not follow the six steps it can lead to customers not being noticed and feel isolated, there won’t be profit coming into the business and the staff member is not giving good customer service which is vital in order to have a successful business. 4. 0 CONCLUSION:

    In this report I have assessed the positive and negative impacts of the customer service and sale techniques of my organisation Clarks. In conclusion you can see that good customer service and sale techniques can lead to increased profit by increasing sales and reducing costs. The outcome will be repeat business, recommendations, customer loyalty, good word of mouth, good reputation, lower staff turnover and productivity increased staff moral.

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