A happy customer is a valuable asset to any business. They can promote your business free of charge.
Did you know that businesses in America make losses amounting to $75 billion every year because of poor customer service?
According to EssayOnTime, a company that offers custom papers to students, investing in excellent customer service is important when it comes to building a long-term business-customer relationship.
In this tell-all guide, we are going to share with you useful tips to help you deliver great customer service that “wows” your customers and makes them want to come back more and more.
Implementing these tips will see your business increasing your customer loyalty and retention rates 5X.
Businesses that have poor customer support are going to struggle to attract and retain customers in 2020 because the number one reason customers leave is that they feel neglected.
By the end of this guide, you will have known everything required to deliver great customer service to your customers.
Let’s get started.
What is good customer service?
Good/excellent or great customer service is the practice of showing your customers how important they are to your business by interacting with them in a friendly and positive way, responding to their service requests and feedback fast and in a helpful manner. Good customer service means meeting and exceeding customer expectations.
Delivering good customer service can help to make your customers happy which also boosts your revenue.
Why is customer service so important?
Good customer service is important for any business that wants to achieve longevity. Every business needs to have great customer service programs that focus on treating customers well, responding to their requests and feedback fast, meeting and exceeding their expectations. When all this is done, your business will build strong relationships with customers, retain them, and make them loyal buyers. It’s costly to get new customers than to retain existing ones.
Here are a few benefits of delivering good customer service to customers.
Qualities of good customer service teams
Quick response time
66% of adult customers want companies to value their time. Today’s customers aren’t patient. They want to hear from you immediately they ask something. Your customer service teams should, therefore, respond rapidly to customer queries.
Availing self-service resources
50% of customers want to solve service problems without your presence. Does your support program have self-service resources? A knowledgebase is one of the best self-service resources your business can have.
This is the section on your business website where customers can find frequently asked questions and answers that can help them solve a problem on their own.
Diversified channels of support
Different customers will do business with you differently. Some customers want to seek help via email while others via social media live chat or phone. Your business should be able to respond to customers’ service requests on any channel they prefer.
Ability to solve problems creatively
A good customer service team will always find ways to help customers achieve what they want. For this reason, customer service agents need to be creative and be able to offer unique solutions to customer problems.
With that in mind, let’s get into the meat of this tell-all guide:
How to Give Good Customer Service to Your Customers
Follow these tried, tested, and practical tips to deliver great customer service to your customers and retain them, make them loyal buyers and your free advertising agents.
1. Be an Expert of Your Products or Services
If you asked for thesis help from most online writing companies, you will find that these companies know what exactly they are required to do. They have experts who know their services and can over-deliver to customers.
Depending on the types of products or services you offer, as a customer support agent, you spend most of your time assisting customers to solve their problems or achieve what they want. For this reason, you need to be an expert in your offers.
The first thing you need as a customer support agent is to know your products well. Knowing your products is, believing in what you offer, being conversant with the features of your products, being able to explain to the customers how the product can benefit them and being able to troubleshoot anything that doesn’t work according to your customers’ expectations.
Customers want to get the most out of your products. They want to get value for their money. Take your time to learn everything about your products so that you can explain to your customers everything they want to know about your products.
2. Know Your Customers’ Needs and Wants
After all, if you don’t know what makes them come to your business, then it won’t be easier for you to help them. Know your customers and if you can, mention their names when responding to their service requests.
Starbucks launched a campaign that aimed at building relationships between their employees and customers. In the campaign, customers who introduced themselves by name were rewarded with a free latte. The coffee brand gave out more than 350,000 free coffee drinks to customers.
What the company wanted is to get customers’ names so that every time their customer service agents are dealing with customers they can personalize their customer service.
3. Resolve Customer Queries Quickly
Customers of today aren’t patient. They want to be valued more than your business.
To deliver good customer service, you need to respond to their queries quickly. This is especially important if the queries are related to smaller issues that can be solved immediately. After all, even the customers understand that complex queries need time to be addressed. But even though it takes time to resolve complex issues, you should always respond fast then let the customer know how long it should take you to resolve the issue at hand.
For this reason, businesses should provide 24/7 customer support via email, phone, live chat or social media.
4. Pay Attention to Customer Feedback
To serve your customers well, you must listen to what they are saying. If your customers speak to you show them you hear them.
Your customer service agents should listen to the customers, understand the customer’s problems and determine the best way possible to provide unique solutions.
Remember that most customers don’t just want their problems to be solved, they want to know that they have been heard and who knows, perhaps they have been encountering the same issues for a long time and they want to see that it doesn’t happen to them the next time they do business with you.
Listen carefully and actively to your customers, hear what problems they are facing and by doing so, you will provide the needed solutions.
Some business owners assume that they already know what the customer wants until they lose that potential sale.
5. Own Up Your Mistakes
Yes, it’s just that. If you want to deliver good customer service to your customers, take responsibility for your mistakes. If you don’t own your mistakes, you are ruining your reputation.
Here is an example of taking responsibility for your mistakes as demonstrated by Amazon.
A customer ordered a PlayStation on Amazon and when it was delivered, the customer wasn’t at home so the delivery guys asked a neighbor to sign for the package. The neighbor then put the package at the customer’s door and that’s how it disappeared in the thin air.
When the owner of the package realized this, he was in complete shock.
Do you know what Amazon did? The company, although had not done a mistake, was quick to solve the problem by shipping a new PlayStation to the customer before Christmas without charging the customer shipment fee.
As you can see, Amazon didn’t stick their refund policy but chose to own a mistake that was partly theirs.
6. Meet and Exceed Customer Expectations
In the end, the customer wants their problem to be solved, but for you, you should go above and beyond that. Good customer service means more than just solving customer issues. It’s about meeting customers’ expectations and exceeding them. This way, you will leave your customers happy.
Bonus #1: Offer Personalized Customer Service
Undeniably, chatbots or AI are doing a good job when it comes to offering customer support but 40% of customers say they want to be served by humans. Personalized customer service begins with understanding your customers and treating them individually.
Customers will feel angry when they are not being attended to individually. For instance, when a customer is directed from one customer service representative to another or being referred to by a ticket number.
Know your customers’ names and understand their special days such as birthdays as well as their hobbies.
Bonus #2: Enable Customers to Help Themselves
Some customers want to solve problems quickly by themselves. 81% of customers try to solve problems before contacting customer support. Another study has shown that 71% of customers want to solve customer service issues themselves. Having customer self-service resources in place can help customers achieve this.
Bonus Tip #3: Deliver What You Promise
Another way to deliver good customer service to your customers is to keep your words. If you promised your customers something, give them just that. Keeping your words helps to build customer respect and trust.
If you say you offer a 30-day money-back guarantee, make sure you stick to your refund policy. Even though it may be costly in the short term, the long-term benefits are worth it.
Note that customers will not feel extra thankful when you exceed their expectations, but will feel bad when you don’t deliver as promised. For this reason, you’d better of under-promise and over-deliver to put yourself on the safe side.
Bonus Tip #4: Work on Your Company Policies
Company restrictions and regulations can also keep your customer service agents from providing good customer service. It’s their duty and responsibility to solve customer complaints. However, if company policies or restrictions can’t allow them to go the extra mile, then your customer service will be poor. For instance, if your customer service representatives can’t offer incentives than don’t expect them to perform their duties as expected.
A good example of a company that gives powers to its customer service teams is Ritz-Carlton. This company allows each employee to spend up to $2,000 per guest each day to address the customer’s concerns and meet their needs.
The employees don’t need permission from the manager to do that. This enables customer service employees to solve a problem immediately it occurs.
Bonus Tip #5: Have Clear Feedback Templates
Even though customers are happy to take part in surveys, most of them hate it when a survey requires them to provide their login details to access a survey platform.
Yes, you need their feedback to improve service delivery, but don’t put them through an involving process to give feedback.
A good way to encourage customers to give feedback is to include a link to a survey in your emails so that a customer can just click the link and answer questions you ask. It’s also important to make sure you ask the right questions in your surveys.
Also, keep your surveys short and sweet. No customer is willing to spend more than 10 minutes in a survey. Keep your surveys as short as possible- it should take a customer 5 minutes to answer all the questions you asked.
Offer incentives to customers who participate in your surveys.
Bonus Tip #6: Observe Your Tone
Your tone can be felt even when you are sending an email or message. The way you respond to chats can tell more about your attitude.
Take your time to write your message, read it several times paying attention to your tone before you hit the send button.
Bonus Tip #7: Improve Your Customer Loyalty Programs
Most e-commerce businesses have customer loyalty or rewards programs where they offer incentives to loyal customers.
Customer loyalty programs help to improve customer retention rates, drive product adoption, and improve referrals.
However, you should make your customers understand how your customer loyalty programs work to avoid confusion.
Bonus Tip #8: Have Ongoing Customer Service Training
Although managers will put customer service skills as must-have for customer service representatives during the hiring process, it’s important to improve these skills by having ongoing customer service training.
Bonus Tip #9: It’s Okay that You Won’t Know All the Answers to Customer Questions
But even if you don’t know the answer to a question asked by a customer, don’t just say “NO” but offer alternatives.
As a rule, always offer to be helpful to customers in need.
If you don’t know you can let the customer know that you are finding out and you will get back to them in a specified time.
What are the benefits of delivering excellent customer service?
i. Increased employee retention
Delivering good customer service will not only benefit your business but your employees as well. With a good customer service program, employees will not have to handle dissatisfied customers. This way, they are less likely to quit because of the stress caused by angry and dissatisfied customers.
ii. Greater customer/client loyalty
Great customer service makes customers feel happy and satisfied. And when customers are satisfied, they will likely become your loyal customers regardless of your prices. Good customer service helps to create a strong bond between customers and businesses.
iii. Free advertising agents
The best marketing money can buy is a happy customer. When you deliver good customer service to your customers, they will be happy. They will share their experience with other customers (friends, family, or social media). This way, you get free marketing.
iv. Business continuity
By providing excellent customer service you will reduce risks of business failure greatly. You get to understand what customers want and also create a lasting relationship with them hence keeping them with you for a long time.
v. Improved business reputation
Look, that customer who bought your products recently did it because of the reputation your business has to the outside world. People want to invest their money with reputable businesses. And if you have a good reputation, it means your customer service is also exceptional.
vi. Helps in product or service evaluation
Just take a look at the reviews customers leave on Amazon and see how many people complain about their experience with customer support of different companies.
What that tells you is that even if your products are good if your customer service is poor, your quality products won’t matter to them. They want to see that there is someone who they can turn to in case they need immediate help.
vii. Makes your employees happy
Once your customers are happy and satisfied, your employees will also be happy and satisfied. This helps to boost their productivity to perform their duties better and serve customers well.
How is Your Customer Service?
If you put these tips into action, you will give good customer service to your customers hence making them want to buy from you every time they need something.
Remember that to keep your business growing for a long time; you need to know how to treat your customers. After all, they are your boss.
If you treat them well, they will come again, they will also let their friends and relatives know about you and this will increase your customer base.