By Jenny Kosek for our 99 Ways to Make a Positive Difference in Your Pharmacy blog series

Prior to joining the Hamacher team, I worked for a retail chain that relied on the phrase “total customer satisfaction” to form the basis for the staff’s approach to dealing with customers. Putting that phrase into action sometimes meant doing something difficult (like sourcing and ordering an obscure product the store might not ordinarily carry) down to something simple, like making a grumpy customer walk out of the door smiling. Total customer satisfaction: it’s a loaded phrase, but a vital one to embrace for any retailer. So what does it really mean?

customer satisfactionSurprisingly, total customer satisfaction doesn’t hinge on the big “above and beyond” tasks that you might be called upon to complete for your customers (and regularly do!). Instead, it’s built upon smaller interactions. In short, total customer satisfaction goes beyond providing customers what they want, and being able to provide what they need (especially if they don’t know they need it). That need could be another product that will improve their outcome, or it could be an additional service. But it might also be as simple as a little extra kindness or a thoughtful gesture. Total customer satisfaction will be different for each interaction, and it’s up to you to help your team understand the many ways they can provide it.

Total customer satisfaction is ultimately about making each shoppers’ experience valuable, customized, and memorable. You and your team have the opportunity to provide this incredible service with each shopper’s visit through actions large and small, but more often than not, it is simple gestures that will make a big impact. Offer the customer a compliment; help her reach a product on a high shelf without her having to ask; hold open the door for him on his way out. You get the picture: total customer satisfaction hinges on turning mundane interactions into extraordinary ones.

How do you know if you’ve provided total customer satisfaction? Don’t expect raving Internet reviews or for customers to wrap you in an embrace (though don’t be alarmed if they do). Instead, watch for them to come back. If you’re providing total customer satisfaction, your shoppers will remain loyal and continue to shop your store to enjoy the superior experience they know they can’t get anywhere else.

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