What Is Good Customer Service?
Providing good customer service is the top priority for almost every successful business. Many companies like Disney, Zappos, and Amazon are known for providing first-class customer service. And good customer service is key to building close relationships with your customers.
We’ve identified the best practices to put your great customer service at the top of the game and dominate your industry.
The Importance of Good Customer Service
Good service makes your customers feel happy and satisfied, which keeps them coming back. Loyal customers are a great asset to the business as they typically spend more than a new customer and purchase more frequently.
Exceeding customer expectations is a great way to improve your bottom line since it takes less marketing dollars to retain an existing customer than it does to bring in a potential customer.
When a customer receives good service from your company, they tell their friends and family about the positive experience. They write good online reviews about the excellent customer service they’ve received from your brand as well. All of which are excellent marketing tools that don’t take from your budget.
In essence, providing good customer service is a form of marketing. Good customer service, without a doubt, helps grow revenue, increase customer loyalty, and improve your overall business strategy.
Study shows that ninety-six percent of consumers say customer service is a major factor in their brand loyalty.
The Cost of Poor Customer Service
Customer service is one of the most important parts of any business, but it’s often overlooked. Many companies spend too much time focusing on marketing messages or product costs that they forget to pay attention to customers’ issues.
The truth is poor customer service costs companies more than $75 billion a year!
If customers receive poor service, they may tell 9-15 people about their poor experience and write negative online reviews about your brand. All of which are detrimental to your brand.
With the competition high for many businesses and the consumers calling the shots, you can’t afford to provide mediocre service and expect to be successful long-term. Poor service also affects the morale within the organization as employees get the wrath of unhappy customers. Low morale within the office causes additional expenses, such as higher employee turnover and decreased production.
Let’s say this again: Poor customer service is costly. High-quality customer service is cheap.
An Oracle customer service report shows that eighty-nine percent of consumers have turned to a competitor after receiving poor customer service.
10 Ways To Provide Good Customer Service
Care About What Your Customers Think
Remember that your customers’ wants, needs, thoughts, and opinions matter. Caring about what your customers think tells the customers that you value them, but it also helps improve your internal processes and gives you a heads-up if customers are thinking about churning.
When you genuinely care for your customers, they will see it making them feel appreciated and cared for, which builds a closeness.
Remember, a customer providing feedback means they care enough to let you know how they feel about their experience with your brand, so it’s important to listen and give full acknowledgment, so they feel heard.
Listening is crucial, and a lot of times it is an overlooked part of good customer service. Customers begin to feel taken care of once you listen to and acknowledge their concerns.
Repeating their concerns, asking clarifying questions, and quietly listening without interrupting are ways to show that you are listening and that you truly care about their problems.
Complaints and Customer Upsets
Every business gets customer complaints from time to time. It’s the companies that know how to handle them who come out on top. Listen to their complaints and let them know you appreciate their feedback, confirm the validity of the problem, and offer a solution quickly. By listening to customer feedback, you may learn there’s a real issue with your product or service.
If you creatively problem-solve to meet customer’s needs and satisfy problems by going above and beyond, you’ll create a following of customers committed to your brand. When a customer is confident they will always be taken care of and satisfied with your company, they are more likely to be loyal and are typically even willing to pay a little more for this service.
Simply put, consumers today don’t want to wait. They want service quickly, efficiently, and accurately. Making customers wait takes away from the total satisfaction of their experience with your brand.
Set up your service process to handle customer inquiries fast to make the wait time as short as possible. Responding quickly leaves a good impression on customers and adds to a positive experience with your brand.
In today’s technology-driven world, consumers want service via multiple channels, including email, social media, SMS, online chat, and phone, and they want it 24/7. To provide the best service and to stay competitive, it’s imperative to be available for your clients when needed and through the channel they choose.
Most high-performing companies have adopted omnichannel support to stay competitive with their service.
Get It Right the First Time
Strong attention to detail helps avoid errors and things going wrong, which causes problems for your customers and your business. When you get it right the first time, your customers are satisfied and happy. Identifying issues or things that may cause customers upset before they arise is key.
You may need to go through your buying process as a real customer does to get a better insight into the ease and effectiveness of your service and locate areas that may need improvement to provide the best experience.
When you come across issues with your products, processes, or service, take action to correct them immediately to ensure it goes right in the future.
Know Your Products
Ensure your staff knows your products inside and out, so they accurately answer any questions that arise without scrambling to find answers. Extensive knowledge of your products is essential for good customer service.
New hires should learn everything there is to know about your products and services so they could speak knowledgeably about them to your customers. If your products are super complex, having a common Q&A list for your employees to use as a reference will help them confidently answer any questions that your customers may have without delay.
Ideally, all of your staff should believe in your products and discuss the features and how the product benefits your customers. This belief makes customers feel they get actual value for their money.
Not all customers want to talk to a representative when they have an issue with a product or service. Some consumers want to resolve the problems independently if there’s a way to do it quickly.
Self-service is a cost-effective way to let customers solve issues themselves without needing to talk to someone. Providing content online that will help customers with anything they may need to use your product successfully is good customer service.
It’s essential to keep the data updated as new products or features roll out.
Keep a Positive Attitude
Without a doubt, a happy customer service agent with a positive attitude goes a long way with consumers. The right attitude even turns a negative customer experience into a positive one after an interaction with an upbeat, happy representative.
Maintaining a light and fun atmosphere for your staff will help the morale stay positive, which will be felt by your customers.
Customers hate feeling like a number. Instead, they want to feel like they are your biggest best customer (even if they’re not), and it helps if you make them feel that way. Getting to know your customers better helps you personalize their service and make them feel special. Calling your customer by name, going off-script, and talking to them like they are friends helps build a closer relationship with them. It’s ok to be light and fun while maintaining professionalism, as positive human interaction often keeps customers coming back.
When you get to know your customers better, you personalize their service to fit them, adding to a positive customer experience. You also personalize marketing ads to them to get them to purchase often, increasing your customer worth and moving your revenue needle in the right direction.
To provide good service, you need to relate to your customers, which starts with empathy. Putting the customer and their needs at the center of everything you do is a critical customer service skill.
Customers expect companies to be empathic and flexible to satisfy their needs. Investing in empathy training and empowering your staff to go outside of policies to deliver satisfactory solutions to your customers is super beneficial.
Anticipate Your Customer’s Needs
Good customer service includes anticipating your customer’s needs before they even tell you about them. Proactive service is when a business takes the initiative to help customers fulfill their needs before contacting the company for help.
It means working to resolve problems at the first sign of any issues.
Tips for Improving Your Customer Service
Invest in Your Staff
Employees are the backbone of any organization. They’re the ones that make things run smoothly and successfully, or they could cause problems and customer upsets. Hiring the best-skilled professionals from the start is essential.
The customer service agent may be the only human contact your customers have with your brand, so they are the face of your company in the eyes of your clients. The customer’s interaction with your service representative could turn them into loyal brand advocates or cause them to churn, making it imperative the best service is always provided.
Obsess over it.
Investing in the proper training for your employees to teach them how to provide first-class service and ensure they know your expectations is critical. It’s also important to train your employees (including management) to handle unhappy customers to make sure they leave happy and satisfied with your brand.
A happy employee committed to the organization’s success provides top-notch customer service and always does what’s best for the company, making investing in your staff a huge benefit.
When your team feels valued, appreciated, compensated competitively, and works in a positive environment, they’re more likely to enjoy what they do, which shows in their work.
Employee surveys or a feedback box is an excellent way to hear what your staff thinks and how happy they are working there.
Send Out Customer Surveys
Sending out customer surveys to get respondents feedback after every touch-point is a great way to see how well your service satisfies your customer’s needs and to gauge their customer satisfaction. Making a fun game internally for your staff to get as many positive surveys returned as they can to win a prize will give them motivation to always do their best.
The rewards should be something your staff would want so they are excited to work hard to get. Remember, providing good customer service will boost your revenue and company growth long-term, making it a win-win for your staff and business.
The employees you hire should match the company culture to ensure they’re a good fit long-term. All employees should know the organization’s mission and goals to work together for the same cause.
A customer service agent who is happy and committed to the organization’s success will go above and beyond to ensure they provide the first-class service to your customers, which will help gain a large following of loyal clients.
10 Customer Service Skills Needed To Provide Good Customer Service
- Ability to anticipate and identify customer’s needs
- Active listening and effective questioning
- Maintain a friendly and positive attitude
- Resolve issues quickly and efficiency
- Understanding of customer appreciation
- Ability to clearly and accurately present options and solutions
- Listen to customer feedback and take action to improve
- Excellent communicating both verbally and written
- Ability to build relationships
Technology is ever-changing, and it’s vital to stay up-to-date to be competitive and ensure your customers’ needs are satisfied. Your systems must run as efficiently as possible to ensure you provide good customer service.
By keeping an eye on technology trends and staying on the up and up with current technology that impacts your customer’s interaction, you’ll ensure that they have a positive experience with your company.
Whether your customers use your payment system or visit your website, they want a fast, efficient, and seamless experience that will get them what they are looking for without delays or inconveniences. The slightest errors could cause big frustration.
Ensure your website is always up-to-date, easy to use, and provides accurate data that will add to a positive customer experience. It’s also important to stay up-to-date with your social media and the channels consumers commonly use today.
Take the Extra Step
If you want to provide good customer service, take the extra step to ensure the customer feels taken care of. Every customer is unique and so are their needs. Whatever extra step it may be, take it.
People notice when others make an extra effort. Even though they may not tell you, they may tell others of the additional care you provided. And those extra steps will win over more customers, which in turn increases revenue.
Throw in Extras
Giving a coupon for a future discount, additional information on features or benefits, or a bonus, goes a long way. It doesn’t have to be costly to be effective, but consumers love to get extra surprises or bonuses when making a purchase. Find something extra that you can throw in for your customers.
Reaching out to customers regularly ensures they are satisfied. You’ll learn if they need additional help or products. This not only keeps them thinking about your brand but encourages them to come back and purchase often.
Don’t Set a Ticket to “Done” Too Soon
A follow-up from a customer service request to ensure their needs are met and satisfied should be a requirement before considering the service ticket completed.
It could be an email (even an automated one) sent to the customer to ensure they’re satisfied. It’s a simple task that goes a long way in the eyes of a customer.
Good Customer Service Is Comprehensive
Customer service representatives should be willing to walk their customers through their issues or concerns to see them through rather than just pointing them in the right direction. The willingness to happily go through these extra steps is what separates good customer service from mediocre service.
Good Customer Service Is Personalized
Customer service shouldn’t be completely templated or mapped out; it should be personalized to fit each customer’s needs.
Good Customer Service Is Flexible
Sometimes, unique situations come up, and a customer needs additional care to be satisfied. Being flexible and adjusting your service to ensure every customer is happy goes a long way and is an excellent way to win over even an upset consumer.
Good Customer Service Is Timely
Waiting is not something consumers like to do. Providing efficient, accurate, and fast service is needed to provide good customer service and make your customers happy.
Good Customer Service Is Proactive
Identifying customers’ needs or problems and fixing any issues before your customer tells you about them is a great proactive approach to providing good customer service.
There are several components to customer service, and you need all of them to satisfy your customers truly. Good service is more than waiting on customers. It involves a pleasant attitude, listening to your customer’s wants and needs, timely resolution of problems, and doing everything you can to ensure your customer is satisfied. When your customers are happy, they are more likely to return and become loyal to your brand.
Like any relationship, it takes a lot of work and effort at times for success and long-term growth. With the correct components implemented successfully, you will have a large following of happy and loyal customers, increasing revenue.
Remember the Components of Good Customer Service
Good customer service involves being friendly, courteous, and professional while solving the customers’ needs promptly. It includes trying your absolute best to make sure that the customer is happy and satisfied.
Customer service is actively listening to customers and helping to resolve any problems so that they remain loyal and become brand advocates to help boost your revenue. The best marketing dollars can buy a happy customer who will promote your business for you.
Personalize Your Customer Service
The traditional customer support model revolves around following templated workflows and scripts, but consumers today want a more personalized approach to service. Going off script and tailoring your service to fit the needs of each customer is an excellent way to build a closer relationship with your customers and satisfy their needs.
Empowering your staff to call the shots to meet your customer’s needs shows your employees you trust them, which makes them feel involved. Showing appreciation for your team’s hard work makes them feel valued. A happy employee will be more committed to consistently providing good customer service to add to the success of the organization long-term.
Are you in need of exceptional customer service staff with experience in providing the first-class service? If so, contact Awesome OS today, and we’ll show you how awesome we are!