Customer service can be a powerful factor in determining the success of your business. After all, 84% of consumers list the customer service they receive from a company as a key factor in deciding whether they'll make a purchase.
Good customer service can keep customers coming back, too. The majority of consumers — more than nine out of 10 — indicate that they'll stop buying from or working with a company if they have too many poor customer experiences with them.
If you want to maintain high customer loyalty rates as you build your brand, then great customer service should be one of your team's top goals. This means everything from anticipating your customers' needs, engaging in active listening when they come to you with questions and concerns, and taking proactive steps to keep customers happy.
This article will discuss the importance of customer service and walk you through surefire ways your company can improve customer care step by step.
The Importance of Customer Service
Customers are the heart and main financial provider of nearly every business. You need them to keep your business running. This means customer relationships and the customer support that you and your team offer customers play a major role in their retention and the overall financial health of your company.
By providing first-rate customer service, you can increase your customers' loyalty. Happy customers are more likely to spend more money with you more frequently. These customers are also more likely to leave positive reviews and share their experiences with friends and family, bringing even more business your way.
You'll likely see the opposite happen — plummeting sales and bad reviews — if you focus less on the customer experience and start providing poor customer service, as these can affect your bottom line.
10 Ways to Improve Customer Service
As you strive to build brand loyalty and retain customers, here are some customer service tips to improve how you interact with customers and how you can provide them with the best experience possible.
Set an Example for Excellent Customer Service
As the owner or manager of your small business, exceptional customer service starts with you. If you expect your team to provide a good, memorable customer service experience for your customers, then you need to be an example for them.
Treat customers the way you expect your staff to interact with them and show them how to go the extra mile. This will help your employees stay mindful of their own customer service skills during customer interactions.
Make Sure Employees Are Well-Trained
Empower your employees with the training they need to provide great customer service. These are your frontline workers who will be interacting with your customers. They need to know and understand how you expect them to treat and work with clientele to guarantee customer satisfaction. Organize regular training on common customer service topics, such as active listening and how to handle customer complaints.
Develop a Customer Service Strategy
Create a clear-cut customer service strategy for your team to follow. By having a policy written in your employee handbook or elsewhere, your staff will engage customers the same way, ensuring that they have a consistent customer experience with every interaction.
Look for Ways to Personalize Customer Interactions
Customers love to feel special. By personalizing your business's interactions with them and catering to their precise needs and wants, they're more likely to have a better experience with your brand.
Easy ways to personalize customer interactions include addressing them by their name, offering them options based on their specific interests and needs, sending personalized messages and responses when they contact you, and developing profiles for both existing and new customers.
You can also use your omnichannel communication platform to personalize all of your digital interactions with customers, including phone calls, emails, websites, mobile apps, and social media — basically, anywhere a customer might interact with your brand.
Think Ahead of Customer Wants/Needs
Anticipating your customers' needs will help you rise above your competition. This means that you need to truly understand who your customer is, what's important to them, and what problems they're likely to need solved.
Make It Easy for Customers to Get Help
If you really want to create a powerful customer service experience, make it easy for customers to seek and find assistance when they need it. This means being available if they contact you — whether by phone, email, or other means — and responding to their concerns in a timely fashion.
As a business, you might consider going the extra mile by creating easy platforms for customers to connect with your brand. For instance, have live customer service representatives or chatbots available on your website to direct them to the information they need.
Offer a Guarantee
By providing a guarantee for your product or service, you're letting customers know that they can trust you and that you believe in your brand. Whether it's a money-back guarantee or free repair or replacement if there are problems with your product, a guarantee can help you land a sale you might not have gotten otherwise. Hooking a customer with a guarantee could also mean repeat business if they're happy with your product.
Encourage and Act on Customer Feedback
Pay close attention to customer feedback to understand how you can improve your brand's customer service experience and anticipate their needs. If you're getting consistent feedback from customers about specific areas of your customer experience that are falling short, you'll know where to focus training and improvements. Send customer satisfaction surveys to customers and pay attention to online reviews to learn how you can improve your business.
Build a Customer Service Team
While all of your employees should be trained in the art of customer service, consider building a dedicated team of customer service agents. These customer service reps should focus solely on the customer journey and customer relationship management (CRM). Their sole job is to ensure customer happiness while tackling customer issues.
Create a Customer Loyalty Program
By rewarding your most loyal customers, you'll drive more sales. Loyalty programs are often associated with retail shops, restaurants, and bars, but they work for business-to-business (B2B) companies, as well. Whether you're offering free items, a steep discount, or a unique experience, these programs make customers feel special and keep them coming back for more.
Skynova Makes Managing Your Business Finances a Breeze
How you interact with customers is just one aspect of offering stellar customer service. Keeping accurate records of your interactions with them and tracking your customers' sales and other activities is another way to improve their customer experience with your company, build your brand, and, ultimately, increase sales.
Skynova is dedicated to helping small businesses track their financial activities and manage their record-keeping system through our full range of accounting software, business templates, and other software products. Our easy-to-use platform streamlines your bookkeeping process by creating a centralized hub for creating and organizing your most important documents.
Keep accurate records by using our customizable templates to create documents for all of your business activities: sales tax, payments, sales orders, bids, invoices, and more. Simply input the data from each transaction and our system will generate the documents you need.
Check out our full line of software products to see how Skynova can help you take your business to the next level.
Notice to the Reader
The content within this article is meant to be used as general guidelines and may not apply to your specific situation. Always consult with a business or customer service consultant to ensure that you're meeting professional standards and operating legally within your industry.