Customer Service: Why Every Business Needs to Invest in It
No business is complete without customer satisfaction. As a business owner, you should aim to sell your products or services and ensure your customers have a positive brand experience. Due to the constant need to ensure overall customer satisfaction, businesses often employ customer service personnel. Some hire offshore staff to address every customer’s needs and other concerns.
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This article will explain customer service, how it differs from customer support and the customer service trends that business owners must watch out for in the coming years.
What is Customer Service?
Customer service is the backbone of any company and is the process of offering solutions to customer problems. Customer service representatives usually handle complaints, returns, and other related concerns. The ultimate goal is to ensure customer satisfaction and a positive brand experience that will keep them returning.
Good customer service can be as simple as answering the phone, responding to an email, or handling serious complaints promptly. However, often it’s more than that. It’s not only about responding to concerns and complaints but also about making customers feel valued and taken care of.
2 Best Customer Service Tips
Excellent customer service eliminates the hostile workplace aura of a company, and it means customers feel loved and well-cared for when their concerns are addressed immediately. It also adds a positive brand experience that ensures loyalty and even referrals.
Here are tips that businesses have used countless times that are proven to create a fantastic customer experience:
1. Use the right tools
Being updated on the latest customer service trends means knowing the right tools for excellent customer service. Using the right tools specially made for customer service help to get to know your customers better and gain better insights about them.
There are many modern customer service tools out there that can improve your business processes and establish strong relationships with your customers.
Do you need to respond to customer chat messages or phone calls? The key to finding the right tool is to understand what exactly you need in the first place.
2. Clear communication with customers is key
Aiming for excellence can improve your brand and position you ahead of your competition. Clear communication is as vital because it can make or break your business. Customers won’t want to interact with you if they don’t understand what you say or aren’t using the right tone.
Avoid being too formal, and talk to your customers like how you speak to a good friend. Also, avoid using technical jargon, slang, and passive-aggressive language (“technically,” “actually,” etc.) when addressing customers. Anything you do can affect communication, so be clear when communicating with customers.
What is Customer Support?
Customer support comprises several services businesses offer to respond to customers’ questions and resolve their issues. It is also key to having the best customer experience. Some of the most common customers inquiries that they need help with, among a few, are about:
- Discounts or special offers
- Product safety and usage
- Returns, exchanges, and refunds
Customers will often reach out for help with an issue that they are having with your product or service. Companies also employ customer support representatives to deal with and resolve the abovementioned issues.
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5 Best Customer Support Practices
Companies offering customer support and back-office accounting services should have the most up-to-date software integrations and systems. Ultimately, customer support personnel should provide an excellent customer experience.
Here are the best customer support practices that will drive success within your business:
1. Measuring the quality of customer support
Companies should set analytics, metrics, and key performance indicators to determine the quality of responses. At the same time, determine areas to improve and apply such improvements for better customer support services.
Excellent customer support helps customers trust your brand much more, making it likely for them to buy from one another time.
2. Delivering customized support
Using scripts is standard for customer support agents who are just starting. Although these can streamline the process and train new hires, canned responses can feel cold and insincere to customers.
You’ll eventually need to train your customer support representatives to handle complaints and other concerns with a personalized touch, helping to create a more pleasant experience for the customer.
3. Determining the right number of agents you need
While having customer support agents is vital, hiring too many may put you at financial risk. If your customer base is small, you may find a portion of your customer support team underused.
That is why it is essential to scale your customer support team. Cloud phone system features can help you provide real-time insight into proper scaling, letting you know how many agents are on calls and how often.
4. Aiming to resolve issues on the first call
Train your agents to resolve issues quickly on the first call. The faster resolution can give customers the impression that your company is reliable and an expert. Quickly resolving issues also helps to reduce waste time, allowing you to focus on more critical aspects of your business.
5. Hiring top talents
To offer the best customer support services, you should hire well-trained and experienced personnel. You’ll need to hire the best talent you can find because they will ultimately influence how customers perceive your business; you need to put your best foot forward every time.
Aside from top talents, you should invest in CRM software, tools, and employee training. These can improve your internal operations will customers can sense whenever they interact with you.
3 Customer Service Trends to Be Aware Of
It is essential to update yourself on the latest customer service trends. That way, you can improve and provide better customer service for your clients. Some customer service trends that have already taken effect recently are the following:
1. Use of social media as a major customer engagement channel
Not only do people use social media to share memes or keep up with their friends and family, but they also use it to address their product and brand concerns. It’s why more and more businesses create social media accounts to reach their audience more efficiently, respond to their problems, and establish trust.
2. Higher demand for real-time customer support
The need for faster response has doubled these past few years, given that most people use smartphones and tablets nowadays. They want answers in an instant, which is why real-time support is crucial to every business.
3. Rise of AI and chatbots
Chatbots are found to help businesses cut expenses by billions every year. It’s not wrong to use AI and chatbots for business purposes since customer service agents are humans who need rest, after all. Using chatbots offers round-the-clock support and provides automated solutions to frequently-asked questions. These also help in reducing lead response time and improving lead generation.
Your business would be nothing without customers and their trust in you. An excellent customer service experience isn’t only good for your business but also necessary to keep it going. By paying attention to your customer’s feedback, you can further improve your business and avoid repeating problems in the future.