I do love L.L. Bean – for their top notch customer service, easy to use and constantly improving website, plus free shipping (for their credit-card customers).

I’m going to sing their praises again for something I’ve yet to see any other retailer do (if you’ve seen others do this post a comment below).

Here’s the story of how I discovered their special customer-friendly technique.

  • I bought something on at the end of 2008 when they were offering a $10 coupon/voucher if you spent over a certain level.
  • They mailed me the voucher, which had a deadline during February. I get it — they want to drive post-holiday sales, no problem.
  • Now that it is a few weeks away from the expiry date, they sent an email to remind me to use the voucher before it expires!
  • That’s the special trick – so small but so big. They remind customers before their vouchers expire.

    This tactic is a good example of making things easy for your customer – remind them of important dates – especially when they can benefit from knowing them.

    It certainly would be cheaper for L.L. Bean to let vouchers go unredeemed.

    Most companies hope you’ll lose the coupon or forget about it. But instead of seemingly ‘saving a buck,’ L.L. Bean knows that a customer who takes advantage of this special offer will feel good whereas someone who remembers it too late will feel disappointed.

    If I could love them more than I already do, I would. At every turn L.L. Bean makes decisions to benefit customers instead of the short-term view (paying for the redeemed vouchers). The long-term view tells you that taking care of customers, thanking them for purchases, and allowing them to benefit from customer loyalty adds to your bottom line.

    Kudos to this nearly 100-year-old retailer who continues to get things right.