These days, the quality of customer service has become one of the most important aspects of a business. 90% of consumers worldwide consider customer services a vital factor in deciding whether or not to support a business. Investing in new customers is five to 25 times more expensive than retaining old ones, and customer service efficiency is essential if you aim to maintain your customer base. Read on to find out about the ways through which you can provide better customer service:
Provide Better Customer Service
1. Seek and Encourage Customer Feedback
Communicating with all the customers themselves is essential to understanding what you are doing correctly and what needs to be reformed further. You need to make it easy for them to provide feedback. Feedback can be collected through online testimonials and reviews, personal phone calls or emails to ask for their opinion after they have used your product, and surveys. CRM systems in the market make it particularly easy for organizations to interact with their customers and collect and organize their feedback.
2. Have a Complaint Handling Plan Ready
You can only view the full picture if you make it easy for the customers to provide both positive and negative feedback. This also creates a need for a proper complaint handling plan well known to both your employees and customers to ensure that the customers know their concerns are taken seriously. Plans like this mostly take three stages into account:
Stage 1 determines the response of the front-line staff to complaints and objections. It further requires employees to identify the timescale of response to the customer and guide them through the next steps.
Stage 2 shows how the complaint will have to be handled if the customer decides to reach a manager or write the complaint out due to possible dissatisfaction with the initial response or the severity of the complaint.
Stage 3 commences if Stage 2 fails to satisfy the customer. It has the most senior manager objectively review the entirety of the complaint and its initial handling process to make a decision on whether to uphold the original decision at Stage 2 or to offer a different solution to the customer.
You will have to assign roles and communicate responsibilities clearly when presenting your plan. Making the level of compensation an employee can offer at each stage to a customer will also be necessary.
3. Analyze Feedback Carefully
You will have to figure out the root causes behind your customers’ concerns and complaints to find out what is going wrong and why. Having a structured system to store customer feedback can be of great help while doing so. Analyze the data carefully to find out patterns in what is mainly causing the customers distress. Make sure to treat all the customer responses objectively and be open improvising upon your products, services, and policies when the need arises.
It’s prudent to schedule review meetings regularly to stay on top of your customer service. Work closely with staff to see and fix the common obstacles customers have to face. Some companies even go as far as hiring shadow employees to act as customers to gauge how the customers are being treated.
4. Train Your Employees
If your business requires a lot of interaction with customers, investing in customer service training may be vital. Training providers hold expertise in getting to know businesses and coming up with ways to streamline their customer service. Alternatively, you could create internal customer service training programmes to enhance your team’s skills by working with team leaders to arrange regular briefing sessions. This can let you standardize your services and ensure that all employees are aware of protocol when handling customer feedback and complaints.
5. Reward Your Best Employees
Implementing a recognition scheme based on the delivery of customer services can promote healthy competition between your employees. It can also let you track employee performances and enlist the help of the ones who perform the best to train and advise the rest of the workforce. Reward based plans can motivate team members to pay more attention to how they deal with their customers. You can use rewards such as additional holidays, gift vouchers, or even chocolates in such a program. A scheme like this usually ends up paying for itself as it helps retain customers through improved services.
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Businesses of today need every advantage they can get to survive in today’s competitive markets. Approximately 60% of consumers change companies if they are dissatisfied with the customer service, whereas around 90% are likely to make additional purchases after a good service experience.
Working towards improving customer services through conducting better training programs, improving policies and enlisting the help of third parties for software solutions is vital for organizations who aim to maintain their position and grow in the market. If you think your company may be lacking, now is the time to take the initiative and fix the problem.