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Up-Service Your Customer

You may have heard of the phrase “up-sell,” which refers to selling a customer an upgrade, more of something, etc. I’ve written that in certain situations, an up-sell is important to the overall experience of the customer. If whatever you are up-selling enhances the customer experience, then it is a disservice not to do so. […]

You may have heard of the phrase “up-sell,” which refers to selling a customer an upgrade, more of something, etc. I’ve written that in certain situations, an up-sell is important to the overall experience of the customer. If whatever you are up-selling enhances the customer experience, then it is a disservice not to do so. Example: “Would you like fries with that Quarter Pounder?” Those delicious fries always enhance my McDonald’s experience!

The concept of up-servicing the customer came from thinking about the up-sell. What if we provided more customer service than the customer expected? Read that line again. There is a difference between “more” customer service and “better” customer service. Better customer service obviously enhances the experience. More customer service helps in ways the customer wasn’t expecting. I’ll try to make this clearer in the following examples.

A guest at a hotel asks the concierge where the closest movie theatre is located. The concierge appropriately responds. At that point, the guest got the answer he was looking for. The concierge had good information and was very pleasant. However, the concierge can up-service the guest by asking if he would like suggestions for restaurants near the theater. By simply asking extra questions (more service), the concierge gave the guest better service.

This example is even more obvious: American Express is a role model I write about in my book, “The Amazement Revolution.” When you call their call center, it is not their goal to solve the problem and get off the phone. Instead, they want to solve your problem and enhance the relationship. They up-service the customer – make that member – by asking more questions and trying to find ways to add value to the relationship.

Don’t confuse asking a simple question like, “Is there anything else I can help you with,” as up-service. That question is expected. It is a courtesy. The up-service technique is used to provide more service, which enhances the overall customer experience.

Shep Hyken is a customer service/CX expert, award-winning keynote speaker, and New York Times bestselling author. Learn more about Shep’s customer service and customer experience keynote speeches and his customer service training workshops at www.Hyken.com. Connect with Shep on LinkedIn.

(Copyright ©MMXI, Shep Hyken)

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