Want to improve your customer service? Here are 5 tips to help you streamline and improve your approach to keeping the peace.
Follow Up With Customers
A transfer of money for a product or service isn’t where it should end. When you follow up with a customer – via phone, email, or postcard – you can receive valuable feedback on how the product performed, how the customer assessed the buying experience, and how likely he or she is to buy again or recommend the product or service to others. This approach makes the customer feel like he or she has not been forgotten and that his or her business is appreciated.
Have Informed Representatives
We all know how frustrating it can be to speak to someone who doesn’t know what he or she is talking about! When a company takes the time to educate and train representatives on products, services, options, and policies, this reduces the need for transferring calls to other departments, the time it takes to respond to a customer, and the confusion a customer might have. While no one expects every employee to know everything, it is extremely helpful if customer service representatives can connect the customers to someone who can answer the question, as opposed to fabricating answers to save time.
Make Customers Feel Special & Appreciated
Rewards programs are a fantastic way to make customers feel that their money is being spent in the right place, but there are many ways to treat clients well! Handwritten thank-you notes say, “I took the time to think of you and write this,” while freebies like complimentary gift wrap or desserts say, “don’t worry about it,” and give the customer the sense of being special compared to someone who didn’t receive this offer. Simple gestures go a long way and don’t always have to be costly.
Talking to customers, especially disgruntled ones, is always challenging. Here’s an easy acronym to help you remember how to guide the conversation back on the right path:
Control the situation: don’t let the customer intimidate you or influence your persona. Keep it professional.
Acknowledge the dilemma: don’t ignore the problem. Try to put yourself in their shoes, even if it’s a small issue.
Refocus the conversation: don’t let the whole conversation be negative, or a rant. Focus on the issue at hand and stay positive about fixing it.
Problem solve: don’t simply apologize for a bad situation. Do your best to remedy the problem, or find someone who can.
Genuinely Care About What Customers Are Saying
We’ve all heard the saying “the customer is always right.” While this is absolutely false, there is some wisdom behind it. Despite whether the customer is actually right or wrong, he or she holds the money and the potential to encourage or impede more business. Treat all customers with respect, and try to treat every complaint/comment equally, no matter how trivial some may seem. A genuine response helps the customer relate to you and typically results in a more pleasant conversation overall.