We never stop learning about customer support here at Oxford Web, and we thought it was high time we shared some of the "positives" we get from serving a huge variety of different customers. So here's our countdown of the 5 best things about customers!
5. Customers remind you to speak in plain English
It's OK having a language for geeks - it's a shortcut for getting ideas across, and if we spoke in layman's terms within the team all day long we'd, waste many hours of work. But the average website customer doesn't want to know that a database query was using too many joins, or that IE7 had trouble with CSS3. Keep it simple!
4. Customers help make the product perfect
When designing and building a website, we aim to see what the customer sees, but they'll have unique insights into the market and the type of visitors who will land on the site. We don't dictate how things should look - we certainly challenge and advise, but ultimately we believe the partnership between Oxford Web and our customer provides the most fruitful environment to build a website.
3. Customers recommend other customers
If you're providing some of the "magic" that makes your customers' businesses tick, they'll be happy to recommend others. We receive many referrals from existing customers every year, and we like to think it's because we add value to their businesses and they're impressed with our reliability and expertise. Sometimes we miss out, and in some cases it may be because we don't remind people often enough about the services we provide. Don't stay silent! We aim to send an e-newsletter once a month in 2014.
2. Customers have fantastic ideas
Working within a team in a tech environment exposes us to many ideas and influences, but if we can also be influenced from outside the team, so much the better. We weren't the first to put a twitter link on our website, or video, or to push all the boundaries of function and form. We get a lot of inspiration from customers.
1. Customers earn us our bread and butter
Yes, it's so obvious, it almost shouldn't be on the list - but if you have customers yourself, don't forget that you need to make a profit from them. They appreciate the value you're adding to their business, and if you're doing a good job, they should be happy to pay your bills and ultimately help you prosper. If they're doing this, you're doing it right!