The first minute upon entering your office, a client will already know a great detail about your business, your culture and your goals. With this in mind, creating a good first impression can help to establish a framework to build a strong, long-term client relationship.
Here are our 10 ways to make a good first impression when a client walks into your office.
1. Welcome your client into the premises with a warm smile or a visitor mangagement system where there are pre-recorded messages that exude warmth and respect.
2. Have in place welcoming messages for your clients, well-placed and in several languages if you have multinational visitors. As a bonus, if it's their native language, you’ll create the impression that he or she is a valued visitor.
3. Make sure you get your visitor a coffee or a drink whilst they are waiting. Our choice is a flat white made using Auckland roasted Kokako beans.
4. Having in place signage directing them to the offices which they require. Popping from one room to another or waiting for their turn in a long queue just to ask directions never goes down well, especially if there are time constraints. Have in place a system that they can use to get where they need fast.
5. Signing in should be a simple and less time consuming activity, no one wants to have a lengthy sign-in process - make it short and non-intrusive, your clients will be happy to comply.
6. Never keep your visitors waiting. Have you ever visited somewhere and three or more minutes down the line, no one has attended or even acknowledged you? You probably felt not needed and may have left and gone where you can be attended to more promptly. Have in place a mechanism where a client or a visitor is served within the first three minutes or, if that’s not possible, shows signs that their presence has at least been recognised and they will be attended to as soon as possible.
7. Make the premises neat and attractive: this goes a long way in assuring your clients that things are organised. A disorganised room is off putting, it communicates a negative message and your client is less likely to take you seriously.
8. Ensure there are safety measures in place in case of an emergency - give reassurance to your client that they are safe when in your office; they’ll not only engage positively but they may stay longer and conclude that very important deal.
9. Never rush your client. Give him or her adequate time, start with the introductions, create a rapport, and then go into other relevant matters. When you seem to be in a hurry to attend to another client or you're missing out on your lunch break, think about how your current client might feel unappreciated and like they are being pushed out the door.
10. Have a receptionist who clearly understands your business and can handle every customer query confidently. There is nothing that turns a visitor away faster than a receptionist or customer representative who cannot provide the answers required, the last thing you want is for your client to leave having been convinced that they cannot get what they are looking for.
Try these ten ideas and you will wow your visitors (and increase your chance of converting them to a customer!)