Shep Hyken's Customer Service Blog

Guarantee Your Products and Service to Create Customer Confidence

100 Percent GuaranteeCreating Trust

Customers want to feel confident with the companies they do business with.  It doesn’t matter what type of business you’re in or how you sell. It can be a manufacturer, a brick-and-mortar retailer, an online e-commerce company – basically any type of business must create confidence. 

I’ve been preaching for years that the way to create confidence is to deliver a consistent and predictable experience. And, that is still the most powerful way to get a customer to trust you. When your customers know you will always do what you say, you will always be on time, you will always do what you promise, you are always polite and appreciative … well you get the idea. That word always is a pretty powerful word. It’s about consistency and predictability.

There is one more piece I’d like to add to the concept of confidence, which is to guarantee whatever it is that you do or sell.

Why do people like to shop at Nordstrom? They know they are going to get great merchandise delivered with great service. In addition, they know that if for any reason they are unhappy with their purchase, or if there is a problem with whatever they bought, they know that Nordstrom has their back and will give them a refund or exchange the product.

I recently had the chance to talk to Aaron Leon of LD Products. His company sells remanufactured ink cartridges for copiers and printers. You might have a brand name printer like a Cannon or HP, but you don’t have to buy brand name ink cartridges from those same brands. LD Products prides itself on a very cost effective alternative, sometimes saving the customer as much as 70% off the brand names. And, while LD Products promises great customer service, they know that they have a battle with the perception of the quality of remanufactured ink cartridges. So, what did Aaron Leon do? He offered a guarantee that takes all of the risk out of the purchase.

Just how strong is the guarantee? Basically, if for any reason you have a problem – which you won’t – or you’re not happy, LD Products will take the product back and refund your money. That’s a nice guarantee, but the quintessential guarantee statement can be summed up with what Aaron Leon tells his customers:

“If you don’t like the color of the box, we’ll take it back!”

Now, that’s a guarantee!

So, are you so comfortable with your products and services that you’re willing to offer that kind of guarantee to your customers? Think about the trust and confidence that it would create. Think about the increase in sales. Think about the repeat and loyal customers. Creating customer confidence means delivering a consistent, predictable experience and standing behind your product or service – with a guarantee.

Shep Hyken is a customer service expert, keynote speaker and New York Times bestselling business author. For information contact or www.hyken.com. For information on The Customer Focus™ customer service training programs go to www.thecustomerfocus.com. Follow on Twitter: @Hyken

(Copyright © MMXV, Shep Hyken)

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  1. Consistency is indeed the key to customer success. Delivering a good customer experience once does not cut it. Your customers do need to be reminded that you are there for them – Always! This is the only way to develop true loyalty. This goes for all businesses and all mediums, be it in-store, online, through social or mobile platforms. http://www.devcontact.com allows great customer support options for all mobile applications. Developers can now reach customers from with the app which makes it easier for both parties to communicate.

  2. I’ve always wondered how a guarantee impacts initial purchases. I don’t think there’s a huge impact because customers are often optimistic about the future. But, I do think it has a tremendous impact on repeat purchases.

    Two personal examples involving online orders.

    The first was Amazon. I bought a new book and received a used one instead. I sent an email and received a prompt reply refunding my purchase and letting me know I didn’t need to return the book. That was easy! I’ve already ordered plenty of times since.

    The second was an olive oil company. Their shipment was damaged in transit and started leaking olive oil. The post office now won’t deliver it, but the olive oil company doesn’t want to take responsibility. I’ll never order from them again, despite their olive oil being incredibly delicious!

  3. On top of creating trust and increasing confidence in your product, this type of guarantee actually helps you better manage your inventory. For example, if you offer that kind of guarantee, and find that your product is constantly getting returned, it helps you understand your customers and what they want/how to improve your product over time.

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