This article looks at how credit-control can improve customer relationships by strengthening customer experience – securing customer loyalty and your cash flow.
Businesses now understand that securing customer loyalty and advocacy has a critical role to play in optimising long-term business revenues. Simply getting someone to sign on the dotted line and then delivering the product or service is no longer enough. An ever-increasing understanding of the role customer experience plays in building customer loyalty means customers need to be delighted by, rather than merely delivered, a product of service.
To guarantee delight, all areas of the business need to be focused on delivering an excellent experience – including credit and collections. Often considered to be the “barrier to sales” department, customer centric credit-control can help improve customer relationships, enabling your business to build trust, secure long-term loyalty and ultimately future sales.
- Identify and resolve issues and disputes early
The initial contact from the credit-control team is usually to confirm that the invoice has been received and is on the payment run. Use this call as an opportunity to confirm that your customer is satisfied with the product or service delivered and is therefore happy to pay the invoice. Identifying and resolving issues and disputes as early as possible is not only critical to securing cash flow but also customer satisfaction.
A customer-centric credit-control call will look to find resolutions which work for the customer and the company – rather than just securing immediate payment. By ensuring the customer is heard and considered, you are not only more likely to recover what you are owed but also secure a loyal, long-term customer – reducing churn and potentially securing a business advocate. There is potential to build far more trust when a problem is positively resolved, than when nothing ever went wrong.
3. Enable your customers to trade with you
Unresolved disputes, unpaid invoices and exceeded credit-limits can all cause your customers to be placed on stop. Whilst “on-stop” can be a necessary process to minimise risk, unless a customer is called to discuss their account position, it can have a serious impact on your customer relationships. Not only could your business be leaving potential sales on the table, but also losing a customer for good if they take their custom elsewhere. By taking a proactive approach to your credit control and calling your customers to discuss their account position, you can work with to find resolutions – ensuring where possible they can continue to trade with you. By accommodating their financial situations, you build stronger relationships and foster loyalty.
4. Optimise cash flow and financial health
Proactive credit control measures reduce the risk of bad debt and late payments ensuring a steady and healthy cash flow for your business. This protects your business from financial strain, allowing you to focus on providing your customers with exceptional products and services.
Author: Mark Smith
If you have a challenge within your credit and collections process and would like to discuss how 4D Contact outsourced credit management solutions could help, please click here to request a call back.
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