Service Is The Killer App On Black Friday and Every Other Day

By Saturday, we knew from the likes of comScore, PayPal and IBM approximately how many dollars were spent on Black Friday.

 Service Is The Killer App On Black Friday and Every Other Day
It is a bit more difficult to gauge the activity around Small Business Saturday, an “event” American Express created in 2010 to bring shoppers to small and medium size business.

To encourage consumers to shop locally, Americann Express offered 100,000 cardmembers a $25 credit for shopping locally. The National Federation of Independent Business reported that about 500,000 small businesses around the country participated, bringing in approximately 100,000 million consumers.

Beyond that, American Express will not discuss incremental revenue generated by the promotion.

In a report from Inc. Magazine http://www.inc.com/eric-markowitz/graphing-out-small-business-saturday-succes..., store owners in Wichita, Kansas, and Athens, Alabama, for instance, saw an increase in foot traffic firsthand because of Small Business Saturday. 

Also, the magazine said that there were about 200,000 mentions of Small Business Saturday on Twitter. By comparison, there were just under one million mentions of Black Friday on Twitter.

Regular readers of this blog know how I believe that small and medium size businesses need to provide the mobile experiences their customers and prospects expect. From payment to wi-fi to deals, mobile makes these entities competitive.

I still believe the killer app is customer service. It can’t be matched via a mobile phone or computer. Over the long weekend, our family frequented a small restaurant. The waitress treated us like royalty, so much so that we asked to speak to the manager to make sure that he knew what he had in his help.

Sure, we could’ve ordered food in via mobile app. While that has it’s own cool factor, it is nothing like a superb experience delivered by a service pro.

According to a survey by Ipswitch’s Network Management Division, online shoppers have no patience for poor website experiences – 92 percent surveyed said they have abandoned a website because of a disappointing experience.

Contrast that with in-person quality service – and the customer will come back often.

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This post was written as part of the IBM for Midsize Business http://goo.gl/S6P7m program, which provides midsize businesses with the tools, expertise and solutions they need to become engines of a smarter planet.

 Service Is The Killer App On Black Friday and Every Other Day