As a business owner, you must provide excellent customer service. By helping customers out in any way you can, you help improve relationships with existing customers who, in turn, will swear their loyalty to your brand.
But customer service isn’t just about answering questions from emails and phone calls. It’s about how you and your team answer them and what you do after.
Irate customers could post on social media about their poor experience with your customer service, and this could have catastrophic consequences – according to PWC’s Future of CX report, 1 in 3 customers will leave a brand they love after just one poor experience, while 92% would completely abandon a company after two or three negative interactions.
Your lack of urgency to rectify matters could swing public perception against your brand. This could cause current customers to jump ship and potential customers to run away from your business, resulting in a loss in revenue.
So, it’s time to audit your customer support to ensure that it remains an asset and not a liability. This way, you can gather data from various sources that provide you with a picture of how you treat your customers and find ways to improve it.
Below are the steps you must take to do this:
First, you must look at how you designed your customer lifecycle process. This includes before people bought from your brand and after they did. From here, look at how your customer service helps convert people into customers and retain them as one.
To see how these occur in your life cycle, you must determine the different stages where people will most likely ask your support team for help.
For instance, people will probably reach out during the decision stage for the pre-sale to find reasons whether the product or service is a good fit for them.
On the other hand, your customer support should build relationships with high-value clients who have spent the most money on your brand for post-sale. Your team can execute customer engagement strategies such as running loyalty programs, special promo offers, and more to keep them coming back for more.
In e-commerce situations, you’ll want to establish your customer journey map and buyer personas to help your customer service team identify products and solutions that will best fit them wherever they are in the customer lifecycle.
Regardless of how you employed your support team in any of these stages, you must review if your customer service has had a positive effect on your lifecycle. If not, you can move on to the steps below to know why.
At the very least, you have the blueprint of how your customer lifecycle is structured. You can then make the changes once you’ve audited your customer service using the other steps.
Your team should respond to customer calls and emails immediately. Consumers expect an immediate response – 60% except it in under 10 minutes!
If they have to call multiple times or wait before they receive a reply from your team, that’s a sign that you need to increase your workforce.
The longer customers have to wait before you address their concerns, the lesser they feel like a priority in your organization. This could lead them to quit your business and go to one of your competitors that will treat them like royalty.
If you feel your team is losing its edge regarding response time, it’s time to shore up your customer support by getting a third-party service provider to handle all incoming calls and emails. This allows your other team to focus on customer inquiries they can manage without burning out.
You can use chatbots to develop an automated conversational workflow while sounding personalized at the same time. Omnichannel communication tools like CommBox help you build fully customizable chatbots that have all these capabilities.
From the bot, customers can just choose from a list of topics they want to know more about regarding your business. The chatbot will then reply with a list of answers linking to your knowledge base so customers can get their answers in an instant.
No matter how good they are to customers, all businesses will receive complaints one way or another. The same goes for generally disliked companies—they will have supporters even if the going is tough.
So, you must gather the number of complaints and compliments you have received over a period.
While you should expect to receive comments from dissatisfied people, you need to have more glowing reviews about your service. This way, you can know that your support aligns with what your customers expect it to be.
For starters, you can check your social inbox (if you use social media as a channel to receive queries from customers) or customer service platforms like CommBox. Comb through the messages between your support team and customers to see if your team resolved the issues or left a bad taste in the customers’ mouths.
You can also expand your search by conducting social listening. Using a tool like CommBox, you can track your brand on Facebook, Twitter, and other channels, and respond to users from the CommBox smart inbox.
Tools like Awario or BrandMentions show you messages posted about your customer service and the sentiment of each. This makes it easier to determine which messages have complimented your customer service.
For messages that gave your customer support a bad review, dig deeper about this instance with your team. Verify if the incident happened and determine how to rectify the issue. This way, you can prevent the same problem from happening again.
You can even use this as an opportunity to reach out to the disgruntled customer and set things right.
Another way to track complaints is customer feedback. CommBox allows your teams to collect feedback by automatically sending satisfaction surveys at the end of each conversation.
After reviewing your customer support workflow, you should check how much your support team knows about your system. It’s possible that some of the disappointment from customers regarding your customer service is due to the lack of knowledge your team has.
Aside from the know-how, they must possess skills helpful in conversing with customers. For instance, a strong and overpowering personality is not conducive to a conversation with an angry customer.
So, when training your customer support, your initiative must teach them how to empathize with customers and their issues. Their ability to adapt to challenging situations and make the right calls for the benefit of their customers is another highly valued skill.
You may find that rethinking traditional customer service can improve your results, empower your customer support team, and even dazzle your customers. Put the emphasis on authenticity and emphasize your interest in the customer – not just their problem.
After customers speak with your representatives, find out what they feel about the rating they give.
Use the information here to educate your representatives on the proper ways of talking to customers and addressing their needs. If they achieved a high rating, acknowledge the great job they’ve done. This will help them know that they’re on the right track with what they’re doing.
Tracking customer service using multiple disjointed channels makes the job much harder for everyone. For instance, your team must manually pull data from a different source and input them into another platform.
You also have to worry about gathering information about the performance of your customer support team.
You or your support manager can review the emails and chat conversations your representatives had with customers. But you’ll find yourself wasting more time and resources doing all these instead of using an automation tool that will do the heavy lifting for you with a few clicks of a button.
Providing your customer support team with the right tools allows your organization to leverage technology for a better and more agile customer experience.
We have already discussed using chatbots to help you improve customer response rates. We also covered collecting customer feedback using social inbox and social listening.
Another example is using technology for cross-channel communication. CommBox offers a unified inbox for customer interactions, allowing agents to communicate with customers through any digital channel they prefer: Facebook Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp, Telegram, Email, SMS, and more. By interacting with customers across channels, you improve their CX and increase your customer satisfaction.
Plus, you need to enhance your internal customer service processes. For example, automatic reporting for teams keeps track of everyone’s progress with their respective tasks and frees up time compared to manual reporting. So, if somebody’s having a hard time with particular customers regarding their issues, someone can lend a hand and resolve the problems faster.
Another way to improve your customer service is to integrate your internal systems with a customer communication platform like CommBox. CommBox streams data from any CRM, allowing your agents to see the customers’ previous conversation history and use that information for future conversations.
After auditing your customer service, you should develop insights using the constructive feedback found from the steps above. You can then implement them soon to improve the engagement of your audience and customers.
From reworking your customer journey map to stacking the right technology for your customer support, you should be able to make the necessary changes that will help grow your business. And it all starts with building better customer relationships with the help of your support team.
Leverage technology to make your customer service better than ever. Put special attention to your customer communication, and use omnichannel tools like CommBox to improve your service at every aspect – response time, personalization, customer satisfaction. It’s time to take the next step in your journey towards great CX.
We’re extremely excited to announce that we have changed our company name to CommBox. It’s still the same company with the same awesome people! just a new name, a fresh look, and a brighter future.Read full story