Apple customers are fanatically loyal and one way that Apple keeps them that way is by offering terrific customer service at its retail outlets. Business Insider has talked with Carmine Gallo, who has just written an entire book on Apple’s customer service called The Apple Experience, and he dishes some interesting information about how Apple makes its retail experience as pleasant as possible. And you’ll be amazed to know that, unlike Comcast, it doesn’t involve constantly trying to upsell the customer on services they don’t need.

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The key thing to take away from the interview is that Apple employees are taught a system under the predictable acronym of A.P.P.L.E. that gives them a step-by-step guide to keep customers smiling:

  • Approach with a personal, warm welcome
  • Probe politely to understand the customer’s needs
  • Present a solution the customer can take home today
  • Listen for and resolve issues or concerns
  • End with a fond farewell and an invitation to return

Again, you’ll note that neither of the Ps stood for “Push the customer to buy more expensive services they didn’t ask for” or “Put the customer on hold for three hours until the office closes.” In fact, most of what Apple trains its employees to do is to actually try to be helpful and listen to people who come in with problems. It’s a remarkably simple and effective concept but sadly one that has not caught on much in certain industries.

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