Offering good customer service is becoming increasingly vital for every company.
After all, the sentence “Change is the only constant” is particularly true in the historical period we are living in.
The pandemic showed us how change can be as unexpected as it is unpredictable and undesired.
Your company needs to be able to handle it, by riding it and learning to exploit it to implement innovations that will enable you, for example, to supply an efficient, accessible, and quick customer service.
How to handle change
Where does the change come from? A new communication channel, an unprecedented increase in customers’ requests or a lockdown, as we have seen during the last months. Regardless of what happens, customers expect a prompt and satisfactory service to solve their problems.
However, keeping up with change can be difficult. Does your company work with obsolete systems? Are you not able to “scale” down the efforts of customer service to keep up with requests? Do you struggle in managing customers’ requests that move from channel to channel?
In this article you will find the answers to these and other questions.
What is meant with good customer service
Customers’ expectations have radically changed and thus the definition of good customer service has been altered greatly with respect to the past.
Just think that only ten years ago, efficient customer service was appreciated. Nowadays, it is claimed.
After all, none of us expect to spend too much time waiting, nor to be recalled after days: the solution to our problem must happen real-time.
The pandemic forced us to stay home and obliged some of us, even those who preferred solving certain problems in person, to go online. Consequently, customer service requests have increased in order to satisfy the new demand.
This provides a new opportunity to serve different customers, who are used to human interactions that usually happens in person. Customers who learnt to use not only their phone, as a channel of communication with companies, but also social media, whatsapp, chats, chatbots, you name it.
Customers that need to be handled in a quick and efficient way.
Let’s see how.
The 5 principles for offering good customer service
In an era of constant connectivity, quality service means around-the-clock customer support. Customers also want to be able to autonomously talk with your company, through self service tools where they can immediately find quick answers to their problems.
Thus, prepare yourself to make room for tools such as live chats, but also chatbots, which have the perk of being active even when your agents are offline.
A chatbot such as Klodike’s can answer to frequently asked questions 24-7, without any human intervention. And if the chatbot does not understand? The request is addressed to a human operator, who will answer as soon as possible.
Not only do customers want a real-time available customer service, but they also want one for each channel.
The average customer uses 10 different channels to communicate with companies: even if consolidated channels such as email or phone basically have a universal spread, the customer support in most of the companies has registered an increase in tickets’ volume due to digital channels.
Social media, SMS and messaging apps such as Facebook Messenger and Whatsapp are used regularly. To these will soon be added voice assistants such as Amazon’s Alexa: the new customer care frontier.
How many times did we repeat the same things to different operators?
The truth is that customers do not care about how your company is organized: they see it as a single entity and do not gladly accept a customer care who does not have access to marketing or e-commerce interaction data.
They want the problem to be solved, without repeating the same story a million times.
Do you have a CRM that enables you to manage relationships with your customers?
Clarity and accuracy
Your operators need to be educated so as to be clear when providing answers. Make sure that they do not speak by using codes or words that are incomprehensible to an external user. Let them use simple words that are familiar to the person contacting your company.
The answers also need to be accurate and thus, the operator must provide the customer with reliable information. Accuracy will not improve the customer’s experience, but inaccuracies will definitely contribute to his/her dissatisfaction. And to him/her going somewhere else.
While clarity can be practiced with careful personnel training, accuracy can be facilitated by knowledge management systems that give the operator access to business information, answers and questions from previous interactions, and enable him/her to answer in a professional and tangible way too.
Efficiency and proactivity
Back to the times when there were only phone lines, efficiency was quite complicated: it was necessary to adopt a plethora of operators to cover peak hours. Nowadays, efficiency can be reached more likely with live chats, for which an operator can even be working on 10 customers simultaneously, or with chatbots, for which the operator only comes into play when really necessary.
Efficiency translated into proactivity too: customers want to be informed in advance from the occurrence of a certain event. Think about those messages informing you about the delay in delivery of a package, or instead about product recommendations based on your purchases.
On one side, customers would feel “pampered” and their experience with your company would definitely be positive. On the other side, by adopting predictive Artificial Intelligence products (for example through recommendation models), the companies would not only obtain a more loyal customer base, but also a positive word of mouth and a greater operational and financial efficiency.
Automate your customer support with the potential offered by AI: request a demo now.