It’s easy to feel like you have to do something big in order to impress customers. But if the goal is to make them happy, sometimes the smallest acts work wonders. By shifting your focus to prioritize customer happiness, you can give your business an advantage that will bleed over into other areas like sales and retention.
The “Why” Behind Happy Customers
Trying to define customer “happiness” is difficult. In one sense, it’s an emotional feeling. In another sense, it’s a very tangible frame of mind that has a direct impact on your bottom line.
According to Help Scout, “Customer happiness is the level of loyalty and satisfaction that your customers experience after engaging with your product or team. It’s the feeling that comes from your customers having their needs met regularly, at the right time, in the right way.”
We obviously want our customers to be happy, but have you ever paused to consider why it’s so important? Here’s some food for thought:
- Happy customers buy more from your company. They don’t have to be sold to (persuaded or influenced) as much and are always ready to make a purchase.
- Happy customers are much more apt to vouch for your brand and/or refer other people to your business. They become advocates for everything you do.
- Happy customers give you the benefit of the doubt. If a package with two-day delivery shows up in three days, it’s not the end of the world in their eyes.
- Happy customers boost employee satisfaction by making work more enjoyable and rewarding. (Your employees begin to embody the personalities of the people they work with on a daily basis. If customers are constantly frustrated, your employees become frustrated, too. But if customers are happy and optimistic, your team will reflect a similar attitude.)
The list of benefits could go on and on. The point is that having a happy customer makes everything else easier. From sales and retention to customer service and employee satisfaction, happiness is the fuel of a successful business.
3 Tips for Creating Happier Customers
Happiness isn’t a number – it’s a feeling or a state of mind. But the more you treat it as a measurable objective, the more it’ll become a priority. Here are a few simple ways you can bring up your happiness “score.”
1. Just Smile
This might seem like a frivolous suggestion, but it’s scientifically proven to work. If you run a service business or some sort of retail store where you’re interacting with customers in a face-to-face manner, a smile goes a long way. In fact, we recommend training your team to smile – and hiring people who naturally smile a lot.
As Walden University explains, “Smiling increases mood-enhancing hormones while decreasing stress-enhancing hormones, including cortisol, and adrenaline. It also reduces overall blood pressure. And because you typically smile when you’re happy, the muscles used trigger your brain to produce more endorphins—the chemical that relieves pain and stress.”
When your employees smile a lot, it does a couple of things. First off, it makes them happier and less stressed. (This gives them more patience and a willingness to do whatever it takes to satisfy customers.) Secondly, it demonstrates to your customers that you care about them. It creates a warm and friendly vibe for your business.
2. Prioritize Listening
The easiest way to make customers happy is by listening to what they want and then following through with proactive decisions and strategies that appeal to these expressed desires.
Listening should be a mindset that you train your team to adopt on a daily basis, but there are even more tangible ways to do it. For example, you can measure customer satisfaction (CSAT) through CSAT surveys that ask very specific questions related to their experiences with your business.
These surveys can be easily designed, sent out, and analyzed using simple CSAT survey software that embeds questions into emails and gathers useful feedback in real-time. We recommend sending these surveys out at least once per quarter.
3. Send out Discount Codes
Money talks. If you want to create a happy customer, give them financial incentives to do business with you. But don’t just lower your prices – which could cheapen the overall feel of the brand. Instead, send out personalized discount codes at strategic times. (And only send them to your existing customers.) This creates a sense of exclusivity, which translates into customers who feel respected and happy.
Put Your Customers First
At the end of the day, keeping customers happy isn’t rocket science. You’ll have to figure out the most efficient and effective ways to do it with your customer base, but it ultimately comes down to putting their needs first. Listen to what they have to say and make decisions that show them they matter. That’s the recipe for success!