Which do you remember more? A good customer service experience or a bad one?
It’s safe to say that more often than not, the bad experiences are the ones that tend to stick out the most. At the same time, however, if your customer service exceeds your customers’ expectations, they’ll be likely to spread the word.
That being said, investing in customer service should be a top priority because whether we want to admit it or not, it is key to a company’s long-term success.
To understand how important excellent customer service is, knowing how a poor one can affect your business would be most helpful, and below are some of them.
The biggest impact poor customer can have on a business is that of losing customers. We’re not just talking about current customers here though, because it can also affect your potential and future customers too.
Always keep in mind that consumers chose you over your competitors for a good reason. It can either be because it’s convenient or because you offer something they can’t find anywhere else.
But you also have to remember that even the most forgiving customers can lose interest (and patience) if the customer service you provide is inferior, to say the least.
To make matters worse, people who experience poor customer service often tell their friends and family members about it. They also post such experiences on social media which can ultimately damage a company’s reputation.
Speaking of reputation, this is something you can’t take with a grain of salt because a reputation for providing poor customer service can be difficult to shake.
A bad customer service reputation can have a domino effect because it will not only turn potential customers away, it may also turn off other businesses. This can lead to fewer partnerships that may potentially help your business in the future.
This may also turn away good employment because potential candidates may assume that you treat employees badly judging from the way you treat your customers.
Nobody wants to be yelled at or cursed at by irate and disappointed customers which is exactly what your employees will get if you provide poor customer service.
Not only will this affect your team’s morale, but it will also cost you time and money because of the constant advertising, hiring, and training you have to do every time someone leaves.
This may also make your customers question your management practices given how your company can’t retain its employees.
All of these negative effects boil down to one thing – profit loss.
With fewer customers come fewer sales. Fewer investors mean fewer growth opportunities. All of these events will trigger a vicious cycle that’s going to be difficult to come out of.
It’s expected for companies to try to save money if the business isn’t turning in some income. Such moves can affect the quality of the people and the service they render, which will put the business further into a downward spiral.
If such circumstances can’t be mitigated in time, business closure is inevitable.
Given these scenarios, we can all agree that providing excellent customer service and further improving it should always be in the pipeline.
All this being said, below are a couple of tips you can implement that can help provide your customers a great customer service experience.
People call customer service because they need help, which means they expect the person on the other line to provide just that.
Apart from empathizing with the customer (which is already a given for any customer-service-related job), customer service representatives should also know the product or service they’re offering from top to bottom.
Good product knowledge is an essential customer service skill. Anyone who provides customer service should take the initiative to learn everything they can about the product they are supporting.
But this goes both ways. From the management side, providing top-quality product training is also a must if you want your reps to provide great customer service. Try not to rush them into taking calls or emails immediately.
The best you can do is give them all the tools and training they need for them to perform their function to the highest level. If you want to see good returns, you need to invest in good training as much as you do with the people you hire.
Waiting in a queue or being put on hold for several minutes is no fun which is why it’s essential for customer service reps to respond quickly especially for small queries. Do take note too that there’s a difference between responding quickly and resolving the case immediately.
While this may not be possible for the more complicated ones, it’s safe to say that customers understand that there are issues that take longer to resolve. Just make sure not to rush them to get them off the call or close the issue without resolving the matter.
Last but not least, don’t make a promise you can’t keep. If you promised a customer a callback in 20 minutes, call them back after 20 minutes. The last thing you need is to aggravate the situation by giving them another thing to be furious about.
Don’t you just hate it when all you get from customer service are robotic responses and canned templates? Isn’t it infuriating when you press so many buttons just to get to talk to someone but end up with an automated response?
People want to interact with a person. Not a company or some automated voice. That being said, personalizing the customer’s experience is essential if you want them to stick with your brand.
While it’s not possible to memorize every detail about each customer, try to go out of your way to at least know the basics. Who are they? Are they long-time customers or new ones? Is this the first time they’re calling or are they following up on a previous concern?
Customers today expect a more tailored experience, and understandably so because it is irritating to repeat one’s self every time you call. People appreciate a more personal touch so don’t be afraid to go off-script and be more personal when needed.
Mention their name throughout the call when necessary, make them feel you value them by taking off from their last call instead of letting them repeat everything.
Little things like these can make a huge difference when delivered correctly.
Customer service has evolved through the years. From providing support over the phone, it has also transitioned to other mediums like email, online communities, and lately, social media.
It’s crucial for your business to adapt to these innovations so you can provide your customers more avenues to air their concerns.
A lot of companies today provide support over social media channels like Facebook and Twitter not just because people are on social media all the time, but also to provide them with more alternatives.
It’s no secret that going through a customer service hotline can sometimes be frustrating with all the waiting that needs to be done. When you have additional options for customers to reach you, you can effectively temper down those frustrations one way or another.
Not all customers are highly dependent on customer service for answers. Some prefer to go through basic troubleshooting first (by themselves) before tapping out and calling for help.
This is why it’s good to have a mix of both human and automated self-service channels for customers to choose from. Automated services like an FAQ or a knowledgebase provide customers an easily accessible guide that will help them troubleshoot any issues they’re having difficulty with.
Add a real-time chat service that customers can turn to if the knowledgebase isn’t enough to resolve their problems. By implementing these strategies and providing your customers both a human and automated customer service option, you’re also giving them a reason to remain loyal to your brand.
Just imagine the convenience these options provide compared to calling the hotline and waiting in a queue. Implementing such changes can make a huge difference especially in the long run.
Providing great customer service is one of the most effective ways to grow a business. It’s what keeps customers coming back and what keeps them loyal to your brand which leads to a better and more trustworthy reputation.
By implementing the tips provided, you should be able to provide your customers with the best experience they could possibly get, enough for them to keep buying your products and recommending you to other people.
If you’re looking to grow your customer service team, FreeUp can help you hire an experienced customer service agent.
With a good reputation and a loyal following, you’ll be able to take your business to new heights.
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