Often people selling at online auction sites like eBay completely forget about the customer service aspect of selling. It is easy as you grow your business and automate many of the daily tasks to develop a sense that you are only dealing with a computer and automated tasks. However it is through customer service that you truly grow your business. So take some time to think about it next time you use software to automatically post feedback or send out an automated email. There is someone on the other end of the deal that has taken a leap of faith in your company and sent you money.
If you think about it, running a profitable ebay business is really not that much different then a bricks and mortar type of store. At least it is not that different in terms of the importance of customer service. So take some time to really think about ways that you can improve your customer service. What are things you can do to build repeat customers, provide great customer service and develop a loyal following for your business? This is the absolute best way to build your business for next to nothing. Below are some ideas that can help in both branding and creating customer loyalty as well as provide outstanding quality customer service.
Start An eZine
Do you sell in a niche area that people would like to learn more about? For example if you were an antique toy collector and sold old toys made from tin you might have a bunch of customers that would like to learn more. The best way to build your business would be to build an ezine and provide them with quality content. This sets you up as the expert and as a friend more then just a faceless dude trying to pawn off the junk in his garage. Also the great thing about an ezine is you can always have a little commercial plug mixed into your content. You have to be carefully and do this only occasionally and subtle however it can really pay off. For example why not start a weekly ezine. You only need to write one quick article a week and then at the bottom you could insert a little line like This week for auction check out and then insert your current auctions. If you provide good quality articles along with the advertising the soft sell approach is much easier for your customers to digest.
Have you ever thought about including little special touches with the items you send out. If you havent you might want to think about it seriously. This can really increase customer loyalty. There is no hard and fast rule here or any one size fits all product that you can include. This is really dependent on the type of products you sell. However including a little thank you card or business card can be something to really build loyal customers. For a while I was including a fun post card with each shipment. I live very close to Los Angeles and the famous California beaches and I would often collect postcards when I was out on the town having fun. Well, the collection got to big and so I started throwing them in with the packages I was sending out. People just love to get something for free even if is a small gift. If you dont think you can afford anything like that then make a thank you card on your computer and send it. It really depends on the items that you sell and what you have available but if you think about it there is something that can be included in every package to easily increase customer loyalty and service.