Everyone knows that customer service is important. It’s what makes people want to do business with you and keeps them coming back. But not every company focuses on this key component, and many suffer as a result. This is usually because they either blindly trust that their staff members are doing what they’re supposed to do or they don’t really know how to improve their customer service skills. What many businesses don’t understand is that customer service is about much more than just being friendly to the people you do business with. It’s about making quality connections and attempting to meet their needs better than anyone else in the industry. You are, after all, competing for every dollar you earn and customer loyalty is the best way to win.
Get feedback from your customers
The best way to understand your customer is to ask them what they want, what they think your company is doing right, and what they feel you could improve upon. Of course, getting this feedback might require some strategizing on your part because people are not always eager to give up their time. Surveys are one of the best ways to get feedback because you can ask specific questions and easily track the answers. But since it’s not easy to get customers to fill them out, a good strategy is to offer some type of incentive for their feedback. Just make sure they know their actual answers are anonymous or you might not get honest responses.
Another strategy for getting feedback that often works well is analyzing previous customer service chats, emails, and phone calls. To do this effectively, there should be an ongoing system set up within your company. You can hire someone to do the specific task of combing over these conversations or require customer service associates to take specific notes after each call. The things they would record would be any complaints, comments, or praise the customers mention. You can then analyze these conversations and look for patterns to find out where your team can improve and what they seem to be doing well.
Keep your software up to date
In our technologically advancing world, customers expect instant, safe, and reliable interaction. While this may not seem like something you have much control over, implementing the right software can change the way you do business. For example, Bright Pattern offers cloud-based fully-featured omnichannel support for a low one-time set-up fee. With this software, you can easily integrate video calls, messaging, live web chat, in-app support, email, and voice calls into your customer service system.
Provide ongoing customer service training
Collect your feedback and use it in ongoing training for your customer service team. Use examples of things staff members have done correctly and what they’ve done wrong (anonymously, of course). Both will help, but sometimes hearing examples of what not to do can prevent some common mistakes from occurring. Schedule training sessions frequently and make them mandatory. You’ll probably need to offer an all-inclusive session for new employees during orientation, and you’ll have to have follow-up sessions monthly or quarterly that everyone attends to keep your staff informed of new techniques or refresh their memories about old ones. Seasoned customer service reps with good feedback and excellent results should be recruited to help in these trainings, either teaching in teams or one-on-one. It’s also helpful to occasionally bring in outside speakers or programs to teach new ideas in a different way. Many agencies offer team or independent training on leadership, customer service, and other business skills that your staff might benefit from.