5 Simple ways to improve your customer service
Have you ever been so frustrated by a company’s customer service? On the other hand, how incredible is it when a company has excellent customer service?
One of key drivers in your company’s value is the value of your customers. Analysing customer profitability and maximizing a customer’s lifetime value are highly important and essential to any business.
Here are five simple strategies that can help you improve your customer service preformance:
1. Train your employees in good customer service
The simple things can make a big difference, so make sure your staff are aware of the need to smile and spend time getting to know your customers. An added personal touch can not only humanise your brand, it can lead to increased sales and boost your brand loyalty (leading to more sales and referrals in the future).
Each and every organisation has its own take on customer service, so it's important that each and every employee is trained in your philosophy and approach.
Educate them on your expectations, organisational standards, complaint resolution procedures and how to answer the phone or greet customers so you can ensure a consistent experience for your customers throughout.
2. Review each customer touch point for a high quality customer experience
Consistency is the key to building a strong brand identity and a loyal base of customers. This means offering a consistently good experience to your customers at each touch point. Think about all the ways your customers interact with you, from face to face, over the phone and via your website or app. Look at any areas that could benefit from improvement.
In many cases, it's possible to remove the need for a user to contact customer service by improving the quality of the information available via other means, mostly your website or app. For many organisations, a significant number of calls to customer service are down to the inability to find information, vague or unclear instructions, or difficulties completing a transaction online. If you can streamline as much as possible at your customer touch points, you can free up your customer service team to focus on relationship building, cut staffing costs and reduce call wait times.
All this will in turn build a positive customer experience.
3. Create a documented customer service strategy
This is essential if you want to provide a consistent experience to your customers and ensure your employees are all acting in accordance with your brand's values. Your strategy should cover every single customer touch point, and it should be communicated to your staff across the board.
A great customer service strategy incorporates the following elements:
- Customer service vision tells your employees what your overarching goals are and how they can help you achieve that vision.
- A hiring policy that focuses on hiring employees with the right skill set to provide quality customer service in line with your vision.
- Identification of customer needs and expectations.
- Clear goals for customer service staff.
- Recognition of good service and high performance. Just like your customers need to feel appreciated, your employees should also feel valued and rewarded when they do a good job
To fully understand the quality of customer experience, consider mapping out the entire customer journey, from the first time a customer lands on your website all the way to when they return to make a repeat purchase.
4. Improve the quality of customer interactions
As well as looking at your overall customer interactions, if you're serious about providing great customer service, you'll want to look at the quality of your customer interactions.
Do all your customers feel appreciated and valued?
If they don't leave every interaction feeling positive towards your business, they're not likely to come back. Getting this right is a big step towards building customer loyalty and bringing in repeat business.
It's well worth evaluating the outcome of your customer interactions and even seeking out feedback from customers after they have been in contact with a member of your customer service team.
5. Seek out Customer feedback
Listening to your customers is one of the most valuable things you can do, both from the point of view of making them feel valued and also so you can be aware of any issues that you need to improve on. A negative customer experience can be turned into a positive one depending on how you deal with it.
Take a proactive approach to seeking out feedback - many businesses avoid doing this for fear of what they might hear. But there's nothing to be afraid of!
Feedback can and should be sought regularly as part of the post sales process and it can give you valuable insight into your organisation's strengths and weaknesses. It also gives you the opportunity to fix problems before they lose you sales or cost you your reputation.
At RSM we can help you ensure you provide exceptional customer service by offering our support and expertise in business.