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Customer Service

Micro Business and their Customers

Customers expect better service from the Micro sector. They are ‘fed up’ with the poor service large stores provide. In 1990 a study by English of Sydney and Perth stores revealed that 41% of those surveyed, walked out of stores without buying, due to the poor service they received.

Micro businesses can offer more personal attention, are more flexible (often working extra hours to meet urgent deadlines of customers) and the quality of their service is high.

It is this customer service that gives the Micro sector the ‘leading edge’ in business. Consequently any ‘start up’ business that doesn’t have a clearly defined Customer Service Programme will be at a disadvantage.

Customer Needs

Customers’ expectations are growing. Naturally they want quality product and service, but they are also very proactive in sourcing ‘value for money’.

You must be courteous and honest and meet promised deadlines, in fact, you must offer more than the customer expects, if you wish to grow your business on the ‘back of customer satisfaction’.

Customer Facilities

An area where Micro businesses do not compete well, is in offering such things as credit facilities, guarantees, providing information at all hours, etc. You should carefully look at these areas to ensure your business is competitive.

1. Credit Facilities

It is a cost and time benefit to your business if you can cease issuing invoices to consumers and accept payment by credit card. It may cost you a fee, but it saves in time and bookwork and increases your cash follow. However, remember you must issue a Tax Invoice to other businesses to comply with GST.

2. Guarantees

By law, the manufacturer of product has to replace faulty goods. Make sure you have product liability insurance in place.

However, the service industry is particularly poor at guaranteeing their work. It is a major impediment to Micro businesses using consultants. Imagine a Marketing consultant guaranteeing to increase your turnover within three months of putting a specific strategy in place. A Micro business would be much more likely to use services of consultants if they guaranteed their work in this way.

If you really believe in what you are offering, then you should be prepared to guarantee it (ensure you have a professional indemnity insurance in place if you are in the service industry).

3. 24-Hour Information

Today this is so easy to provide via the Internet. Your customer can keep ‘up to date’ on your product development, place orders, or make complaints when and where it suits them. For the first time you can promote your business at any hour of the day, or night.

Make sure your web site is updated regularly, and have your ISP provide statistics so that you can monitor when your site is being accessed and by how many. Always have a ‘call to action’ section on your site. Just make sure you respond to your emails promptly as this is part of your service.


Customer service
Targeting customers
Marketing strategies
Creating a database

Networking groups
The Internet
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