Excellent Customer Service.

SanDisk-For The Win!SanDisk is most well known for their excellent removable storage and portable memory devices. My specific dealings with SanDisk revolve around Compact Flash (CF) memory cards, for use in digital cameras. I own fourteen (14) SanDisk CF memory cards –ranging in capacity from one to eight gigabytes (GB). They are my product / company of choice and after a –very good– recent experience, will continue to be.

I had been having problems with two Extreme III 2GB CF cards (older 20 MBps ESP versions). They kept locking up my Nikon D3 with “CHA” errors. The problem was random but consistent. The CF cards in question had been purchased back in 2005 & 2006. I wrote to SanDisk Customer Service and explained my problem. A rep. got back to me within 24 hours and after a few more email transactions, gave me a Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA) for two new replacement CF cards! (They were direct replacements. I received two new-in-box 20 MBps ESP cards, not the newest 30MBps cards –but that’s fair.) I started the process on 07-31-08 and received my new CF cards on 08-14-08. SanDisk paid for UPS shipping both ways –SWEET!!

As a member of the small business community, I go out of my way to offer my clients excellent customer service. This is reflected not only in a high quality product but also in the way said product is delivered –promptly, on-time, with a smile :-) , and ultimately, with little to no negative impact on those around me. I think most businesses try to meet or exceed that model. But an often overlooked (by businesses) aspect of overall excellent customer service is support for customers after the point of sale.

Sadly, product and service support have taken a back seat to profit-only models recently (as most of us already know –first hand). The truth is: every single business understands that technical support, warranties, and service calls are all negative values when calculating “the bottom line”. However, they are all necessary parts of truly excellent customer service. Those businesses that go out of their way to provide quality technical, service, and warranty support (despite their negative impact on the profit margin) should be applauded! “THANK YOU SANDISK!!”

AFTER-WORD: with regard to future “bottom lines”, it really is in the best interest of every business to maintain an excellent customer relationship, for the life of their products / services. They will eventually be rewarded / re-compensated with customer loyalty and repeat business. And on the flip side of the “excellent customer service coin”: it is the responsibility of the customer to let businesses know if they are doing a good or bad job –in a courteous and professional way. (The same way you want to be treated by any business.)

Speaking of responsibility: if a business does the right thing and willingly offers support and RMA’s –DO NOT ABUSE THEIR TRUST!!! If your purchased product or service is working as it should, do not lie and request an RMA or refund for frivolous reasons. That is one of the catalysts that cause businesses to “side line” their customer support infrastructure –“shrinkage” kills profit margins no matter if it happens in a Shopping Mall or via RMA!