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Small-business Savvy: Consistency is the Key in Customer Service

Glenn Muske, NDSU Extension rural and agribusiness enterprise development specialist (NDSU photo) Glenn Muske, NDSU Extension rural and agribusiness enterprise development specialist (NDSU photo)
Consistently good service brings customers back.

By Glenn Muske, Rural and Agribusiness Enterprise Development Specialist

NDSU Extension Service

No doubt about it: We all like to have a “wow” customer experience.

Yet research has found that, while the “knock your socks off” experience is one you remember, what gets customers back in the door is when they receive ongoing, solid, good service from your company time and time again.

Consumers like consistency. They want to know what they had today, while shopping in your store, will be the same tomorrow, next week and next year. That is the standard you need to strive for in your small business.

Great experiences get talked about, but through time, the memory fades and other experiences begin to color what happened. As I think back through the years, I can talk about several outstanding experiences I have had. Yet ask me about the company today and I also will talk about how on later occasions, these businesses failed to meet my standards, let alone continue to hit that high plateau.

Thus, the one “wow” moment gets your business visibility in the short run only. The businesses that time after time clear the bar, though, are those where the consumer becomes your ambassador.

Focus your efforts on understanding and fulfilling my expectations. Achieving that becomes part of your brand. It’s what people are looking for.

Mark Twain’s comments on this still are valid today, “Always do right! This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.”

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More information is available at your local Extension office, as well as at and

The Small Business Administration and its related organizations, such as the Small Business Development Centers and Service Corps of Retired Executives, along with many other state agencies, also can be valuable resources.

NDSU Agriculture Communication - Aug. 4, 2016

Source:Glenn Muske, 701-328-9718,
Editor:Ellen Crawford, 701-231-5391,
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