There’s no shortcut around it: The key to keeping your existing client base and growing your business is effective customer service. Your agency can’t simply go with the flow when it comes to satisfying customers. There must be a plan in place that is always followed through on.
When your company builds a great rapport with its customers, then those customers will continue to come back. In turn, that positive experience and feedback gets spread to others through word of mouth, reviews, social media and a whole range of other free public relations material.
Once you have sold a product or service, it is then up to your company to offer a support system and overall customer service approach that dictates whether you will ever be able to sell something to that customer in the future.
The Most Effective Customer Service Habits
These 10 habits of effective customer service will help your business satisfy its existing customers, and help it grow for the foreseeable future.
Ask for Feedback
Don’t wait to see what people will say about your company, ask them! It’s better to hear from the customer first hand and help them through any issues they may be experiencing rather than getting a negative review. And positive feedback will help shape your overall business strategy as well.
Never let a phone call or email go unanswered. Your customer’s time is very valuable, and feeling ignored is a major turnoff for anyone. Respond to all inquiries as quickly as possible and don’t miss any phone calls that you are expecting from a customer.
And Be Prepared!
Know who you are talking to and what their issue may be ahead of time. Fumbling around to find a file or trying to remember who a particular client is will reflect poorly on the entire company.
From the start, it’s important to set reasonable expectations. If you have to overpromise to strike a deal, you’ll likely be unable to deliver on what was agreed on. Getting a customer’s repeat business is largely service based, so keep the expectations at a fair level.
No matter what a customer has to say: Listen. They are likely telling you much more than an individual concern or bit of praise. If someone is especially happy or unhappy with your service, ask what they are comparing their experience to. Getting information like this will help your company going forward.
Deal with Every Complaint
No one likes dealing with a complaint, and you can’t please everyone. But handling criticisms one at a time is essential for business growth. Helping a single person through a tough complaint will enable your company to show what kind of customer service is offered.
Act in a Helpful Way
It may not always be the most profitable idea in the immediate, but offering a discount or free service will go a long way. The little issues that people must deal with cost them their personal time. While your business may not have intentionally made it a poor experience, the effective customer service will pay off down the road.
The customer service staff, along with all employees, should always be courteous. Every interaction with an existing or potential customer is all part of the customer service experience. By training your staff on how to interact with customers, you will feel confident in their ability to promote your business anywhere.
Go Beyond What is Required
Don’t just provide an instant answer. Instead, walk customers through the entire concern they are having. A customer’s simple question is likely just the root of any issue. So get to the core of any issues and go beyond what is expected to show a truly great customer service experience!