In many ways, it’s something that’s been relegated to the past. That notion of door-to-door sales is almost as old as the hills. Nowadays, the impact an online business can make trumps the door-to-door approach, not just from the perspective of the customers (because they’re not being hassled), but it’s easier for us as we can manage things in-house. But what about the markets that are potentially untapped by the internet, such as senior citizens? Is there actually a place for a door-to-door approach, not just in terms of selling, but in how we keep in contact with our customers?
The Personal Touch
From the perspective of a business person, that personal approach we can embody in a one-to-one conversation could mean so much more when it comes to sales. While we have to pay lip service to the idea that customers nowadays don’t want to be bothered in person unless they physically come up to you, we can still take some of the touchstones of a door-to-door business approach and implement it into how we communicate with customers. After all, many market research companies still make an appointment with people so they can turn up to the house and go through things in person. Psychologically speaking, we can get more from a customer in a personal sense if we are open and honest, and lay our cards on the table, literally and metaphorically, so we can show the customer how they stand to benefit from a certain product. When we deal with contact centers, and are speaking to people over the phone, we’re not getting the comprehensive experience. And if we are running an e-commerce business, where communication is entirely via the website, can we use this to our advantage? Video calls are one component we can use to make the experience a bit more personal for the customer. Nowadays many rely on the telephone, as well as an online chat function, so if we are attempting to bridge the gap between an impersonal online chat and a telephone call, this may very well provide a suitable option. But, what about those where it’s essential to be in touch with them on a personal level?
Is It Physically Practical?
It is impossible to go to every single customer and dedicate the time to going through products and offers with them, but this is all dependent on your customer base. If you have older customers, and their only means of contact is the telephone, and even then they’re not able to use it that well (due to hearing problems, for example), it’s your responsibility to make sure that customer doesn’t feel left out. Because the modern marketplace is all about the big sales and the impersonal approach, these little touches could go a long way to keep a customer on board. But it’s not just the personal aspect that can be impacted positively; the functionality of the business could get a shot in the arm by having its workers visit customers. It’s a very good example of how the business can come to the customer, especially if there is a problem with the product. This is evidenced in the car service industry, where specialists can come out and fix the vehicle without the customer needing to venture all the way back to the place they bought it. And while there are so many ways for customers to pay remotely, not just online, but with mobile credit card processing machines, this means that any business can go where the customer is. This works so well if you have a purely online presence. In effect, you are running a mobile business. And not many people give thought to this now because the ease of access the internet brings.
It can be a very simple way to extend your outreach to the customer. The easy option is for us to hide behind our digital walls and entice the customer into us, but if we have a customer base that’s not adept at online transactions, we can be missing a trick. While the door-to-door approach of sales is pretty much dead and gone, when we’re trying to make life a bit easier for our customers, this personal approach could make a big difference. When you compare the personal touch to the e-commerce approach, running a business online is a hands-free tactic. But running a business where you can physically approach the customer, with their permission, not only are you showing willing, but you’re showing the customer you’ve got nothing to hide. Truth is essential in any sales transaction, and this could make all the difference.