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  • 29 Nov 2017

Understanding your customers: The difference between hearing and listening

Understanding your customers

Hearing does not bring understanding. The importance of understanding your customers is a key factor in the way to the success of your business. Without knowing what your customers need, you can’t provide them with a good experience to bring them back to you. In order to do that, you really have to listen to your customers instead of just hearing them saying some things. Customer satisfaction is always important as it helps in creating repeat customers and grows your business. 57% of small businesses say that the primary driver of having repeat business is having a relationship with their consumers, according to Factory 360.

So, let us have a look at some crucial benefits of knowing your customer and how to listen to your customers to know your customers’ need even better.

1. The difference between hearing to customers and listening to them is where you find the difference between meeting expectations and exceeding expectations. By listening to your customers you show you care and provide them with satisfaction over their choice. Today’s consumers have much higher expectation from the customer service departments. According to surveys, 60% of consumers have higher expectations for customer service now than they did just one year ago. So, listening to them with a desire to solve their issues is essential.

2. When the customer talks, stop doing whatever you are doing. This should be your attitude towards customer satisfaction. Listen to understand their inner workings and to know how they are connecting with business. At the end of the day, customers are the ones whom you need the most for your business. So, stay 100% focused on the customer. Do not allow yourself to be distracted.

3. If you face the customer in person, establish frequent eye-contact, but without making him feel uncomfortable. This way, your customers will know that you care and you are sincere. Besides, having occasional eye contact will also enable you to have that focus required to truly listen to your customers know your customers’ needs.

4. While the customer is talking, write down keywords on a sheet of paper. This will help you retain the main ideas. Enable your whole customer service department to be vigilant and give attention to such things. Moreover, you should also make it easier for your customers to give your feedback about your products or services. This way, understanding customer needs will become much easier and clearer.

5. Keep your emotions in check. Sometimes we don’t like what we are told, but if you get carried away, your focus will shift from what’s most important: the customer’s feelings. So, always keep your customers’ feelings and emotions before you. Even if you run into a situation when you encounter an angry customer, keep you calm and listen what is ailing them. Then try to sooth them through dynamic problem-solving.

6. Read the customer’s body language and tone of voice. Sometimes they speak louder than words. There will be situations when your customers may not be able to clearly express themselves to you but you have to decipher what they are really feeling through their body language and tone of voice. Besides, there are some customers who are shy or not expressive in this case too noticing their tone of voice and body language will help you to understand whether they are satisfied or not.

7. Okay, now you have mastered the art of listening to your customers but even after that, there may arise some moment when you missed some words or didn’t really understand something. Therefore, if something is not well understood, do not hesitate to ask the customer to repeat it. Double check what you understood with the customer.

Follow the above-mentioned step in order to listen to understand your customers’ need instead of just hearing them. This way, your customer satisfaction rate will soar and your business will keep growing to newer heights.

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