Yesterday I went shopping for a laser printer. I went to Pricespy and Trade Me, along with Ascent where I have successfully purchased before.
Pricespy sent me to a few stores, including Ascent, but I will pick on Computer Direct who came back as the cheapest. They have a good url, but they are not a company that I have heard of. Still, they looked professional enough, and so I placed printer into the cart.
All good, if a little dated, but when I clicked on check out I was confronted with this:
Sorry – I don’t know you, and although I’d buy a printer from you I have no wish whatsoever to register on your website. You have also not yet told me how much shipping will cost, and given that I do not trust you I choose to stop. Goodbye.
For a simple lesson on how to do this (and to buy my printer), I headed on over to Ascent. Here is their cart:
and here is the next screen, which is excellent. I can simply click the center button and buy what I want to buy. I don’t have to register, I don’t have to remember a login and password.
Oh – and before you can say lock-in and email spam, you should know that not only did I buy something else from Ascent two days ago, I have also purchased several expensive items from them over the years. Each time I just go through a normal checkout process. What I am trying to say is that it is not being registered that increases loyalty, it’s the site usability and the service. And that’s clearly worth a few extra bucks.
Ascent were first recommended to me by a red headed chap at Trade Me a few years back, and I’ve since recommended Ascent to others over the years, and I also commend them to you.
From Twitter @normnz agrees – “Ascent are worth every extra penny. Their service levels are extra-ordinary” and @vavroom says “Been dealing with Ascent for years. Service is *exceptional*. Would not think about using anyone else.”
This sort of word of mouth marks the difference between really successful businesses and lousy businesses.
What are you doing for your business to generate this sort of response? How do you stack up versus your competitors? Do you even know?