The OPEN Forum by American Express is an excellent resource for all small business owners. Â The OPEN Forum blog recently posted a great list titledÂ Ten Tiny Things Every Small Business Owner Should Do in 2009. Â
- Act like a prospective customer and call your company to see how the phone system and receptionist treat you.
- See if your website has a â€œContact Usâ€ section. If it doesnâ€™t, add one. Â Ensure that it has a street address.
- Send your company an email asking for customer support and see if someone responds to it.
- Answer customer support calls or emails (not the one you sent in) for a day.
- Go out on a sales call with your salespeople and a service call with your service people.
- Read the documentation or manual that your company provides. Â Extra credit: See if you can do this without reading glasses.
- Pretend that you lost the documentation or manual that came with your product or service and try to find it on your website.
- Register your product or service including finding and reading the serial number of your product. Â Extra credit: See if you can read your serial number without reading glasses.Â Â Extra extra credit: If you use aÂ CaptchaÂ system for registration, see how many times it takes to get the word right.
- Add a signature to your email. A â€œsignatureâ€ is a block of text at the end of your emails that contain all your contact information. It saves your recipients the hassle of asking for your address and phone number or searching for them on your website.
- JoinÂ TwitterÂ and thenÂ searchÂ for your company name, your product, your competitionâ€™s name or product name, or market sector terms from your business. Â For example, letâ€™s say youâ€™re in theÂ web designbusiness. Â Extra credit: Use Twitter as aÂ twool.
From your brick-and-mortar operation to your social media presence, this list provides a simple way to gain insight into what you’re doing well and what you need to improve. Â Why not take a week to complete this checklist? Â You will probably Â find little- to no-cost ways to improve your customers’ experiences.