David vs. Goliath: How technology keeps small businesses competitive

In order to stay competitive, a small business needs to provide quality customer service using modern tools. 

Technology can help a small business provide excellent customer service.

If you’re a small business in a competitive industry, you might feel like David going up against Goliath. Bigger companies might appear to have more resources, but these days, technology levels the playing field.

Smaller businesses can have the advantage over larger corporations when it comes to customer support. Business 2 Community cited U.S. Small Business Administration data that stated customer service is one of the primary reasons that consumers select local businesses over large corporations.

There are software programs and online tools that you can use to make sure your customer interactions measure up to consumer expectations. Cost-efficient business technology can give you the tools you need to take on the giants.

Flexibility
Customers have a variety of needs. A security dealer has to have the tools to meet those needs.

Houston Chronicle recommended providing consumers with a multitude of communication options. Whether they want to talk on the phone or message you through social media, you should have the contact avenues available. No matter the means of communication, the information generated by the interaction should go to a single location – your database.

A business should encourage customer communication.A business should encourage customer communication.

A security dealer software system provides your office with the ability to collect and manage a wide variety of data using a single platform. A unified information system can collect information and then expedite customer communications, sales, scheduling, work orders and any other data needed for first-rate client support.

Make sure you select a program that can handle your business’s current and future demands. Find a provider that will deliver a system that can keep up with an expanding client base.

Customized Solutions
There’s an old expression: “When the only you tool you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.” You can’t always use the same solutions on different clients.

Inc., a small business magazine, suggested technology can personalize a customer’s interaction with a company. Data captured during previous dealings with your business will provide you with your client’s history and preferences.

If an issue does arise, you can check the software. Has the client had this issue before? Is there something in their history that could account for why this problem is happening now? Have they been happy with their service in general? Being able able to reference their history will show a customer you are focused on his or her unique concerns.

You can search the software for other clients who have had similar issues. With the proper information system, previous problems can become current solutions.

Customer Responsiveness
As soon as the customer has an issue, you need to be ready with a solution.

Business Insider argued consumers will no longer stand for delays. In the modern information age, the customer expects a company to have the appropriate response at hand. If a customer calls with a question about his or her account, you can’t place them on hold while you search through papers or try to locate the person they talked to before.

Your customer won’t enjoy being handed off. Every employee a consumer addresses should have the tools to answer their questions and address their concerns. With the proper technology, a technician in the field should have access to the same information as the sales force or office managers.

Resolve concerns before they happen
Good historical documentation can guide the future. Being able to spot client trends and patterns should give you the ability to predict what your next business step should be.

“Good historical documentation can guide the future.”

The second a service issue, financial problem or clerical mistake is detected, the software can capture that. Your entire company is now aware of the issue and can resolve it before it affects others clients. You should create an automated warning system to look out for issues in the future. Automated information tools can be utilized to reduce work and prevent customer concerns.

For example, the customer doesn’t want to pay extra for late payments, and your company doesn’t want to hound your clients. Security billing software can create consistently prompt customer service. A routinely scheduled and clear invoice minimizes surprises and provides ample notice of due dates.

Make use of technology that is just as preventive as it is responsive. Speak with a technology partner that will help you develop the tools you need to keep your customers happy and keep your small business competitive. No matter how big the opposition may seem, the right tool can help you win the day.

Is This You?

  • You've outgrown your software!
  • Billing & Collections is too time-consuming!
  • You have too many slow pay accounts
  • You need to automate your processes!
  • You enter the same data multiple times!