Hardware Retailing

NOV 2018

Hardware Retailing magazine is the pre-eminent how-to management magazine for small business owners and managers in the home improvement retailing industry.

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CUSTOMER RELATIONS Retailer Has a Whole New Ring B eing attentive on the phone is an important facet of customer service, but how do you retain that when you need to put a customer on hold? Smith's Ace Hardware, which has five locations in New Jersey and Pennsylvania with a sixth on the way, recently updated its hold recordings with the help of an audio branding company. "Every month we develop a script for the latest sales or new products, and professional voice actors read them," store manager Scott Baron says. "It's an upgrade from the previous generic recording we were using." Each Smith's Ace location can tailor its own message, and the messages can even be changed quickly should the need arise, such as when a winter storm is approaching. "We put a prompt in to remind customers we have shovels and snowblowers," Baron says. The phone system offers an opportunity to provide another layer of customer service. "Sometimes a customer has to be on hold while an employee finds an answer to their question," Baron says. "This system keeps them from feeling like they've been put on the sidelines." Smith's Ace Hardware has five locations in New Jersey and Pennsylvania and each can customize its own phone hold message. Checkouts

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