Excellent customer service is at the centre of the success of any business. Without it you will find both your short term and long term success is damaged: complaints will deter new clients and existing clients will decide not to return to you. With this in mind, here are our top six tips to customer service success:
Responding quickly and in a friendly manner.
Speed is of the essence. Great customer service relies on reassuring your customers that you are attentive, present and welcoming. Any dead air created by a delay in service can be a killer in forging this impression. Responding to them rapidly, effectively and politely is essential. This means being attentive to your customers when they are physically present. It also important to ensure that you have robust processes in place to rapidly and effectively respond to queries through email, telephone and social media.
Acknowledging and working to correct your mistakes.
If an apology is appropriate after a complaint then don’t hesitate to make it. Make sure you include a constructive reassurance that you will avoid the mistake in future. This is another way to reassure customers that you are attentive and that you are serious about your service, willing to be self-reflective and willing to embrace improvement.
Knowing your customers.
To achieve excellent customer service, it is vital that you forge personal connections with your customers by understanding them. Research is the key to this. Make sure you know what your customers’ needs are, what drives them and, even, what causes them pain. Understanding what your customers want and don’t want means you can tailor your service to a personal level.
Look after your customers.
It’s not all about getting new customers – nurturing your existing customers is vital to any business. Getting people to come to you again and again relies on you finding ways to welcome them back and by getting to know them. Great customer service involves appreciating and welcoming repeat customers.
Going above and beyond.
You are the expert in your field – so try to give your customer more than just the standard. If you work in a restaurant, make sure you know where your produce is sourced. If you work in a clothing retailer make sure you keep up-to-date with the latest styles and trends. Offer informed advice to customers so they begin to respect your opinions and your service.
Remember to ask for feedback.
Finally, to deliver excellent customer service it is essential that you actively seek feedback from your customers. All the points above rely on you learning from the customers you have and having the flexibility to react to their feedback. But don’t forget that gathering information about the quality of your customer service is only the first step – you should take advantage of training opportunities to improve.
We can help you to achieve this.
Xperior offers a range of services that give your customers a voice and that can help you to react to what they are saying. Through our mystery shopping service we can get under the skin of your business. Through our social media monitoring we can ensure that you are in a position to respond swiftly and effectively to any query or concern. From customer satisfaction surveys to tailored customer service training, we can help you ensure that your service is shaped by the needs, desires of the people you serve.
Get in touch for more about how we can help you deliver excellent customer service.
About the author
Emma Carmody is Managing Director of Xperior Ltd. With over 18 years’ experience in management across different sectors, Emma takes a proactive approach to customer service, using data and analysis to shape bespoke customer service programmes.