With customers anticipating a positive interaction each time they interact with a business, customer service is the linchpin of any successful operation. It goes beyond resolving customer problems and ticket closure; it’s a critical aspect that molds customer perception.
In this article, we will delve into the world of customer service, explore its importance, types, and share insights on how you can provide the best possible customer experience.
What is customer service?
Customer service is all the ways in which a company engages in direct contact with its customers. This can be to answer pre-sales questions or solve issues customers encounter after purchasing a product or service.
For instance, when a customer has a question on how to install software, they will reach out to customer support, and a team member will help the customer carry out the process.
Importance of good customer service
The quality of customer service you provide can significantly influence the success or failure of your business. Let’s delve into the significance of good customer service and how it impacts business growth.
Aids in keeping clients
The more devoted customers you have, the more your business grows. A satisfied consumer is more likely to do business with your firm again.
Salesforce reports that a positive customer service experience motivates 91% of consumers to keep purchasing from the same brand.
Sometimes, that means taking an immediate loss for future gain. For instance, you’re more likely to develop a devoted customer base if your customer support staff has a streamlined method that makes returns quick and straightforward.
Strengthens the brand and company values
Because members of your customer service team interact with consumers often, they bear primary responsibility for upholding the reputation of your company.
Positive reviews and word-of-mouth recommendations for your company can result from supplying excellent customer service and bringing in new customers. A positive public image can improve how customers perceive the goods and services provided by your business.
Improves worker retention
Support agents can only offer customer service as good as the policies, training, and infrastructure supplied by their company. With bad customer service policies, agents can be the target of customer frustrations, making their jobs routinely unpleasant.
If a company has good policies and gives agents sufficient training and all the tools they need to succeed, they’ll be more content to work there and better able to satisfy customers, as well.
Generates positive recommendations
The most effective and affordable type of advertising for a business is often word-of-mouth. Positive recommendations come directly from current and former clients who have enjoyed working with your business.
According to Qualtrics XM Institute, 94% of American customers will recommend a company whose service they rate as “very good”.
Satisfied customers spread the word about your accommodating and polite customer service to their friends, family, and coworkers, and they might even write about it on social media.
Their contacts may then be inspired to make a purchase from you.
Increases lifetime value of customers
The total revenue your business might expect from a single customer throughout their whole time as your customer is known as the customer lifetime value (CLV).
You can dramatically boost your company’s income by raising the CLV without having to increase your marketing expenditures. A rising CLV indicates that your consumers are either making more frequent purchases or are spending more money on each order.
Types of customer service
Let’s explore the various methods you can use to provide customer service to customers:
Self-service using knowledge base software provides customers with the ease of solving problems independently, without having to contact customer service representatives. It involves providing an organized collection of information, like frequently asked questions, how-to guides, video tutorials, etc.
Email ticketing software is a valuable tool in providing customer service, as it allows for thorough, documented communication. It offers convenience to customers, enabling them to reach out at any time and receive detailed responses. It gives businesses the ability to handle multiple queries simultaneously and maintain a record of conversations.
Social media has transformed customer service, making it more accessible, efficient, and personalized. Platforms such as X, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram provide businesses with a direct communication line with customers and the flexibility to adopt a more engaging and fun approach.
They serve as real-time solutions for immediate responses to customer inquiries, complaints, or feedback. Social media platforms also enable the tracking of customer interactions, offering valuable insights into behavior and preferences.
Tips to deliver excellent customer service
There are different ways to provide good customer service:
- Offer easy-to-understand answers to your customer’s questions and concerns. Provide simple instructions in your knowledge base articles and product listings, too.
- When communicating with your customers, keep a professional demeanor, especially when the other person is upset.
- Make sure your work is error-free. Check all orders to make sure that they are filled correctly, free of defects, and in accordance with customer specifications.
- Keep in touch with your customers when you’re working on their issues.
- Employ ticketing software to help you streamline your support process.
- Embrace automated customer service to reduce the burden on your support staff and enhance your customer service help desk.
- You should make it clear to your customers that they are valued in your business and that you appreciate their support. You can show your appreciation by including a thank you note at the end of every product purchase and at the end of every ticket resolution.
Refer to our blog to learn strategies you can use to handle customer complaints.
Essential customer service traits
Dealing with customers is sometimes hectic. Therefore, you should be mentally and physically prepared for any circumstances. The following are some examples of the top customer service skills:
Show customers some understanding. For instance, a customer can unknowingly misuse your product. In such cases, be compassionate toward the customer and express understanding for their confusion. This will build a good customer-company relationship.
The road to a business’s downfall is miscommunication. To avoid it, your agents need to actively listen to their customers. Even if their workload is hectic, agents need to concentrate on the customer in front of them and take note of their specific complaints and circumstances.
If an agent listens to a customer’s first sentence, decides they know what the problem is, and interrupts with a solution, they run the risk of lacking vital information and irritating the customer, too.
When a customer reports an issue and then doesn’t hear back, it can cause worry and frustration. Including a timeline for when the customer can expect to hear from your team and sometimes the steps your team will be taking can go a long way to relieving that frustration. Be transparent about what customers can expect from your company and how your services work.
Having the skill to communicate effectively with customers plays a large role in customer satisfaction.
With good communication skills, agents can relate well to different types of customers and meet their support needs smoothly.
While the ability to show customers sympathy is important, support agents also need to practice emotional detachment. Many customers contact customer service when they are frustrated and proceed to take that frustration out on the agent assigned to their case. Agents can’t take this personally. Maintaining a level of emotional distance will keep their side of the interaction professional and help them not burn out.
Effective time management
It’s doubtful that agents will often be serving only one customer at a time. Therefore, support agents must have exceptional time management abilities.
Being able to prioritize by urgency and deadline takes some practice, which can be helped by both clear guidelines from supervisors and automated systems that take the guesswork out of the process.
Sometimes keeping a customer happy when things go wrong requires a bit of creativity. A company should provide its customer service leads leeway to come up with creative solutions to satisfy customers when the potential benefit outweighs the loss.
Your customer service agents can’t efficiently help your clients without knowing how your product or service works. Giving your agents proper training and providing a work environment where asking questions and sharing knowledge is encouraged creates a knowledgeable workforce. Having an easily accessible and searchable knowledge base also increases their self-sufficiency in finding answers.
How does ticketing software help improve your customer service?
Among other benefits, ticketing software helps your team organize and manage all its tickets. It automates the prioritization and distribution of tickets, thus increasing the pace at which tickets are resolved.
It also automates sending acknowledgments to customers, providing them with reassurance that they’ve properly filed their tickets and outlining what they can expect after that.
It can also organize knowledge bases for both customers and agents, making solutions easier to find.
These are just a few examples of how adopting a versatile help desk ticketing system can help an organization meet its goals of customer retention.
Discover additional benefits of a help desk ticketing system in our blog.
Enhance your customer service and see the difference!
BoldDesk by Syncfusion provides you with all the help desk features you need to perfect your customer service. Schedule a live demo or sign up for a 15-day free trial to find out how BoldDesk’s tools can be customized to suit your business needs. If you have any questions, contact the BoldDesk support team.