Key Ways to Improve Your Customer Service
We may earn money or products (at no cost to you) from the companies mentioned in this post. However, we do not let any merchant influence our ratings - even though they might like to. ;-) Some of our top rated merchants we have no relationship with, other than we like their products! We do however appreciate you using our links when possible, because it allows us to keep the lights on and bring you more great reviews!
Customer relations should be the biggest concern for all companies – whether you sell consumer products, offer a service or consult. To improve customer relations, you must focus on your customer service. No matter how talented your staff is or even how great your product is, the wrong type of customer service can make your products less appealing.
A company is defined by the quality of their customer service, so while you may be focusing on better ways to market your products and services, do not overlook the importance of a skilled, friendly team of customer service representatives.
How to Improve Customer Service
Your customer service team can always improve. Even if you feel as though they sell enough or have excellent results, they have room for improvement. By constantly looking out for ways to improve that relationship, you can fine-tune your training and inch closer to 100 percent customer satisfaction.
Strengthen Your Team’s Customer Service Skills
Your customer service representatives need the right skills first. When hiring for your team or even assessing the quality of the team members you have, you should look for the following qualities in the reps themselves:
- Patience, consistency and empathy
- The ability to adapt to different customer personalities and needs
- Clear communication skills
- Excellent work ethic
- The ability to stay informed and educate customers – you should never have a representative that does not know how to answer a customer’s question or handle a customer concern
- Thick skin – not all customer calls are pleasant calls
Work to Improve Customer Interactions with Representatives
Even the most talented customer service representatives can fail your customer’s when it comes to interactions. To ensure your representatives give customers the best possible interaction, you should work on:
- Asking your representatives to try to come up with a common ground they share with the customers calling in – this helps create a better relationship and helps the customer relate better with the rep.
- Have a system for follow-ups after a problem has been resolved – such as a manager contacting the customer to ensure they were satisfied with the problem and resolution.
- Ensure your reps are not afraid to admit mistakes and take ownership of those mistakes. If you notice a mistake before a customer does, report it to them right away – admitting it first will go a long way.
- Have your representatives practice active listening so that they can show the customers they truly appreciate their concerns.
Increase Customer Service Hours
Your customer service cannot have limited hours. In fact, companies with larger contact windows get more business because customers like to work with companies that are available when they are.
Consider Adding Live Chat
Not all customers have the time (or patience) to contact your customer service line or wait for email. Live chat allows them to address their concerns while still taking care of other tasks. If you haven’t done so already, consider adding a live chat feature to your website.
Upgrade Your Virtual Phone System – or Add a Virtual Phone System Altogether
Are you still using traditional landlines? Or worse, are you giving out your private cellphone for customers? To improve customer service, you must also seem professional. One of the best ways to do this is by upgrading your phone to a reliable, professional virtual phone system. Check out our reviewed and scrutinized Top 5 Virtual Phone Systems to see which companies may work for your business.
Not all virtual phone companies offer plans for call centers, so if your business uses a call center for customer service, you will want to look at our favorites for Call Centers.
Improving your customer service should always be top priority. With these tips, you can start to implement a new training program and hopefully, improve your relations with new, prospective and existing customers.