Knowing your product

Certificate II in Hospitality – dealing with conflict at work or at schoolWe have all been customers one time or another, and we have all experienced good and bad service. However, we always remember the bad service, and are more likely to spread word of mouth of bad service than good. Whenever serving a customer, this should always be kept in mind – ensuring good service. When you complete a School-Based Traineeship with us here at Club Training Australia, you will learn hands-on how to provide great service that customers will brag about to others.

When serving customers, you should use your past customer service experiences as a guide as to the service that you should provide, as your experience provides insight into what customers expect and need. You should also use you knowledge of specific products to assist the customer in making a purchase that meet their needs. This is as customers make their purchasing decision on the advice and depth of knowledge about the product or service that you offer.

Therefore, you need to have a good understanding and knowledge of the features and benefits of the products and or services that your organisation has on offer, so that you are able to assist that customer and provide them with the knowledge and advice they require. Customers seek choice, variance, experience and diversity when enquiring about products and/or services when purchasing, and your knowledge can assist or influence them in purchasing a different product that they otherwise would normally not.

For example: A customer walks into the supermarket, you always see them purchasing a certain type of cheese from the deli. Like usual, they come over and ask for the same cheese as always, however this time – you make a comment “why don’t you try the camembert cheese instead of the brie? The camembert is similar; however, it is softer and has a stronger flavour”. The customer values your opinion and decides to purchase, and purchases it for the coming weeks. Without your on-hand knowledge of the product range, you would not have been able to or feel comfortable to provide your knowledge on the product to the customer.

Part of your job role in hospitality is to assist and guide customers through queries, and to provide them with product knowledge. However, be aware that your choice for the customer may not be the right decision for them. You must ensure that you ask the customer specific questions to ensure that you are choosing the correct product and/or service that suits for them.

You need to be confident in the product and service information that you provide customers. Product and service information can be obtained through the below ways:

  • From the product itself – looking, tasting, smelling or using the product can give you imperative information and first-hand knowledge of the quality, value and characteristics of the product

  • Seek information from colleagues and/or other customers as they may have first-hand knowledge or additional advice in regard to the product

  • Customer feedback

  • Attend trade fairs, this can give you additional information on the product, straight from the supplier

  • Look over the product labels and packaging

  • The internet, this source of information can provide you with reviews and independent analysis on the product

  • Read all promotional materials

Providing customers with great customer service involves not only being polite, smiling and outgoing, but also providing them with knowing everything about products and services. If a customer asks you a question about a product and/or service that you have on hand, you should be able to instantly provide them with the information that they need. You need to have a wide range of knowledge on each product, no matter how large or small, as customers do value product information advice, allowing them to make the right decision. As a School-Based Trainee, it is part of your role within the organisation to know about all aspects of the product and services that are on offer. Throughout your traineeship, Club Training Australia will assist you and ensure that you have all the appropriate service and product information required to be able to advise customers on their purchases.