Working in any customer service role requires patience, time, and commitment to ensuring your customer’s needs are met. That being said, if your company only uses basic customer service skills, you may find yourselves struggling to reach maximum customer experience and satisfaction ratings. When those ratings drop, your business can suffer. Therefore, it’s vital that you and your employees strategize to create contact centre strategies to keep customers engaged and ultimately satisfied.
While building on the basic strategies is always a solid idea, if you want to truly go above and beyond, you’ll need to be prepared to update your current workflow. Below, we’ve outlined some of the little-known and lesser-used tips and tricks you and your employees can implement today to drive your customer experience ratings higher.
Be Attentive To Your Customer’s Needs
One of the best ways to ensure your customer service team performs excellently is to ensure you and your employees are aware of what your customer needs. More often than not, escalated issues only arise due to miscommunication, confusion, and lack of organisation in client-management. There are a few different strategies you and your team can use to keep tabs on what your customer needs and find solutions together.
Keep Tabs On Customer Requests Upon All Platforms
Many companies have 2-3 different methods for reaching the customer service team. In some cases, this means submitting a help request online or through email. Other platforms allow for live chat, and, most commonly, phone-based customer service. Customers whose questions are not answered in the first contact – known as first-contact resolution – are often easily frustrated by their experience. However, at times it will be necessary for the customer to call back or ask additional questions.
This is why it’s important for customer service agents to review information about the customer across all platforms. Being able to review a customer’s file and see they called in previously in regards to an issue, submitted a help desk request for an issue, and are now calling again, for instance, can be very beneficial. When an agent reviews notes left, they can see what’s been explained to the customer, how it was explained, and can find a way to give the customer the information they need in a way they understand. Ultimately, this eliminates the “I’ve already been told that” frustration. Additionally, it lets your client feel like the customer service team is organised and understands exactly what problems they’ve previously encountered.
Monitor Your Time of Response
Time of response is especially important. Obviously, most customers don’t enjoy listening to on hold messages for twenty to thirty minutes without speaking to someone. Additionally, customers also dislike being put on hold once they’ve reached a representative, as it can be frustrating, especially for simple issues. Keeping tabs on your team’s time of response and ensuring that calls are answered in a timely manner improves customer satisfaction. Reducing total on-call hold time is also extremely beneficial. Whether you choose to allow your agents to address an issue by researching and calling a customer back, or simply providing them the tools they need to quickly resolve an issue, it’s an effective way to improve your customer service ratings.
Ask Probing Questions
If you’re speaking with a customer and you do not understand what the issue is, or exactly what they’re asking, ask probing questions. Gathering more information from a customer – possibly more than you need – from the beginning will help you better resolve the customer’s issue when they initially contact your customer service centre. Additionally, it reduces the amount of time customers have to listen to on hold messages, as agents won’t have to research a potential issue to determine what the exact problem is.
Make The Experience Simple
Another important aspect of customer service is keeping each interaction simple and to the point. Many customers get frustrated when they call a customer service centre only to be persuaded to purchase something or offered potential services that are not related to their specific issue.
Only Offer If It’s Relevant
While some issues may have specific product offerings, such as add-ons or online applications the customer can utilise, not all questions will. If a customer calls in with a basic question, you should answer it and educate them on where they can find more information. This way, the customer feels heard. Each contact should be an attempt to impress the customer. Providing additional information on how services work can be beneficial, but you don’t want to overwhelm your members.
Make Sure You Have Self Service Tools
For something simple, like placing an order or requesting a password reset, self-service tools can be extremely beneficial. These tools keep customers from having to reach out for every minor issue, which in turn reduces hold time and increases customer satisfaction, as it’s relatively easy to take care of simple tasks.
Be Realistic With Your Customers
If a customer calls in frustrated, being truthful with them about the situation will often make things easier. Telling the customer, for instance, that your team is experiencing technical difficulties and that’s why hold times are long can easily de-escalate a situation in which the customer may have been frustrated. Educating a customer on an issue that arose due to an error on their end can help them better understand how to avoid issues in the future. Being realistic, while also being polite, can make the customer have a much better overall experience.
Focus On Customer Service
Ultimately, you and your team should focus on customer service. Keep in mind that each time a customer reaches out to your contact centre, you’re presented with a new opportunity to impress. During each form of communication, you want to try to wow and surprise the customer. It gives them confidence in the company, reduces tension, and is a fantastic way to resolve issues.
And, at its core, customer service needs to be a company-wide priority. Each team-mate should make it their personal goal to help the customer in the best, most effective, and efficient way possible. If your team is dedicated to making their customer’s lives easier, your customers will be happier.