When you manage a seemingly endless number of customer service requests each day, it’s easy to lose sight of the importance of each client interaction. With the business landscape becoming increasingly competitive year over year, delivering quality customer service can directly impact the success of your company. For customers on the receiving end, a single interaction with your company can completely alter their perception of your brand and services. Delivering poor customer service will not only damage your business’s reputation but it could have a direct, negative impact on your revenue. Because companies now communicate and engage with customers on a multitude of platforms, it’s essential to follow best practices for each one.
Here’s a look at how you can amplify your customer service and implement best-in-class practices on the following 3 platforms: phone, email and social media.
Do you enjoy being kept on hold for an extended period of time? Heck no. Neither do customers. Always answer the call within two rings - this will help you begin with a great impression (especially if they’re calling your company for the first time).
Even though your customer cannot physically see you, if you smile when you talk, it’ll naturally create a pleasant and positive tone of voice. You’d be surprised how big of a difference smiling on the phone can make.
When receiving an inbound call, the first thing your customer expects is to be greeted by the company they intended to reach. For example, “Good morning/afternoon/evening A Better Answer, this is Mary, how may I help you?” So, keep it brief and help the customer get to their desired destination as quickly as possible (without being rude, of course).
It is also best to provide a name so the customer knows exactly to whom they are speaking. It creates more of a personalized experience.
That’s a serious customer service faux pas. Never interrupt a complaining customer while they’re airing out their grievances. Your blood pressure may rise. You may have to bite your tongue. But as hard as it may be, it’s an essential part of creating a good experience for your customers. Staff should be trained to make sure all customers feel like they have been heard and understood. You need to make sure the customer feels like they are being heard and well taken care of.
Your customer should always be in the know. Train your team to provide the client with a list of action items and next steps, followed by an expected timeframe that’s longer than necessary.
Why? Because this gives you an opportunity to remedy their problem faster than anticipated, which makes it look like you really went to bat for them. This is how you create loyal customers and retain business. When you take longer than you stated, they’re going to be oh-so-angry with you.
Here’s an example of what you could say:
“After we hang up, here’s what I plan on doing. I’ll give the supplier a call and I’ll let them know you need another chair. Shipments to our store from the factory typically take a week. When it arrives, I’ll give you a ring, so you can either pick it up or have it shipped directly to you. In the meantime, I’m going to send you a return label for the damaged item. The new chair should arrive within two weeks. Again, I’m sorry for any inconvenience this has caused you, but I’m happy we were able to resolve it for you.”
First off, telling someone to calm down is not only rude, but it’ll most likely have the reverse effect and drive the customer into an even angrier state. Always respond to irate customers using reassuring language, such as “I can understand how you feel” or “wow, that’s incredibly frustrating!” This shows you empathize with them and you fully hear their complaint. All a customer is really looking for is to be understood and have their problems resolved.
Personalize your interactions with the customer. Don’t view emails as transactional but rather as a conversation between two people. Clients want to feel they’re communicating with a real human being - not a robot or automated company messaging service. Use your name, have your photo in your signature and ensure you’re creating a relatable, authentic customer service experience.
Despite what you may think, a customer complaint is a golden opportunity to fix something other customers may experience (or have already experienced) - essentially helping your retention rates with other clients. Showing gratitude in business is a huge way to separate your brand’s customer service from a competitor. A simple “thank you for bringing that to our attention” holds a lot of power and will ultimately strengthen your relationship with that client. Always make sure your customer walks away from a conversation knowing you’re very appreciative of their feedback good or bad.
Your customers can feel unimportant if they have to send you a follow-up email to check on the status of their request. That’s a serious palm to forehead moment. Whatever organization tactic works for you - whether it’s adding a note to your calendar or creating a task in your company’s CRM - make sure your customers know what to expect and deliver on your promise.
The words you choose to you can have an immense impact on the way your customers interpret your emails. Make a concerted effort to replace any negative words with positive ones.
Here’s an example:
Before: “Actually, you can just do this within the settings tab.”
After: “I’m happy to help! You can do this by clicking on the settings tab in the upper right-hand corner of your screen.” Feel free to add some personality or use a smiling emoji if you’d like (of course, only if this seems appropriate).
You need to go where your customers are. By using the social channel(s) they’re comfortable using, you’ll be able to deliver a more effective support experience as you’re leveraging their preferred network.
Our digital ecosystem has created heightened accessibility to social media. People can connect and interact on social platforms from virtually any location or device. This face-paced, “always-on” mentality has changed expectations among customers.
Did you know that 42% of consumers expect to receive a response within 60 minutes on social media? That means, when it comes to social, your team should be making an effort to address complaints, inquiries, and reviews as quickly as possible to meet these expectations.
Just as in an email, your tone of voice is an essential part of providing excellent customer support. This can sometimes be challenging to pull off when platforms, like Twitter, impose character limits on Tweets. To get your tone just right, you should always tailor your language to mirror that of your customers.
For example: Are they using slang, emojis, or exclamation points? If so, this means you can reciprocate in a similar manner, but always remain professional.
Likewise, if your client sounds frustrated or angry, you want to turn up your empathy and communicate in a tone that’s reassuring, understanding, and apologetic.
While it’s crucial you always listen and respond to your clients through social networks, there will be times when the issue at hand simply cannot be resolved within the platform. When these circumstances arise, it’s perfectly fine to transfer your communication to another medium, such as phone or email.
In order to accomplish this, you need to handle it the right way. Simply directing your customer to email or call for further assistance is going to come off as apathetic, rude, and lacking empathy. No customer wants to just keep getting passed from one person to the next, or one channel to the next, with no actual action taking place to help resolve their issue. Instead, you want to come off as eager to help, using a friendly tone and demonstrating you truly care for the customer and helping them come to a resolution.
Let’s face it: There’s always room for improvement when it comes to customer service efforts.
Because the level and quality of your customer service will ultimately dictate the success (or downfall) of your business, you may want to consider employing the help of a professional answering service who have the expertise to not only handle customer service initiatives but they are trained to handle a variety of situations - from the good, the bad, the ugly - when it comes to speaking with your clients. What’s more, they are typically cheaper than hiring an in-house customer service rep. So, why not give it a try? You can elevate your customer experience to a whole new level with the right talent and techniques in play.
Publish Date: December 16, 2019 5:00 AM
Accordia Solution CIS
Accordia Solution is an innovative developer of seamlessly integrated cost-effective omnichannel Contact Center Solutions specifically targeted at the micro, small and medium operations.Our core business model involves the development and marketing of IP Telephony and IP Contact Center Solutions. We also strive to develop customer interaction solutions which include contact center and customer relationship management (CRM) that enhances Customer Experience Of The Future (CEOTF) and optimizes agent productivity.
Our flagship product, the Accordia Customer Interaction Suites (CIS), offers comprehensive functionality by helping your business meet and exceed the level of service in line with...
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|3.)||Arise Virtual Solutions|
The Arise Platform
Arise is a pioneer of on-demand customer management business process outsourcing solutions, headquartered in Florida. Through the cloud-based Arise Platform, Fortune 50 and other companies connect to Service Partners who deliver authentic, loyalty-building interactions with their customers. Delivering radical flexibility to meet even extreme contact volume fluctuations, the award-winning Arise Platform is an innovative alternative to the traditional contact center.
Astute Agent gives your agents everything they need to work cases confidently and efficiently. This modern case management CRM is the preferred choice for Consumer Relations and Customer Care teams who support some of the world’s most prestigious brands.
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CCaaS, SIP Trunking, SD WAN, Interconnectivity
Brook Trout Solutions provides Technology Guide services to help Contact Centers to the best possible solution for their business. This includes:
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Call Center Studio
Call Center Studio is the world’s first call center built on Google and is one of the most secure and stable systems with some of the industry’s best reporting. It is one of the most full-featured enterprise grade systems (with the most calling features, one of the best call distribution, outbound dialing features and integrations—including IVR, AI Speech Recognition, blended inbound/outbound calling and includes Google’s new Dialogflow and Speech API. Call Center Studio is the absolute easiest to use (with a 10 minute setup), and is the price performance leader with lower equipment cost and less setup time.
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CallTrackingMetrics is the only contact center solution with marketing attribution software built in. Our powerful UCaaS platform lets you know upfront who is calling in, what campaigns they were referencing, and their previous history with your company. Partnering this data with tools to automate and streamline your team’s workflow frees you up to focus on truly delighting your customers.
Conditionally direct calls, texts, chats and forms based on:
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From AI - WFO and everything in between!
Cloud Call Center Search has spent hundreds of hours evaluating and vetting leading cloud software applications (Omni-Channel, Artificial Intelligence, Business Intelligence, Workforce Management and many others) and their actual use in the trenches with real-world clients. As a result, we understand the strengths and weaknesses of cloud-based call center software solutions. At NO charge, Cloud Call Center Search will match your organization with the cloud software providers that are the best fit to drive positive ROI in your customer experience, sales, and back-office operations.
|9.)||Cloud IT Services GmbH|
Dialfire offers you a complete call center solution that is simple and intuitive to use and adapts to your needs. It's completely cloud-based, saving you the hassle of setting up a phone system and installing software. In addition to predictive dialing and call blending of inbound calls, you can create personalized campaigns through an intuitive and easy-to-use interface. Features include automated workflows and full control over the agent screen.
You can see the full list of features here:
Cloud contact software that makes customer contact pain free, so your team aren’t worrying about complex technology and can focus on what they do best. Take control, and design the perfect agent interface with a drag-n-drop visual editor. Combined with AI, leverage data-driven contact strategies to ensure the right agent is contacting your customers at the right time & on the right channel.
Content Guru makes engagement easy. A global leader in cloud communications solutions, we deliver off-the-shelf and bespoke customer engagement and cloud contact centre services, through the multi-award-winning 𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝗺® platform.
Europe’s largest Customer Engagement and Experience platform, 𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝗺, brings together intelligent automation, third-party systems integration, and on-demand scalability to enhance all customer communication functions. With true omni-channel engagement capabilities, 𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝗺 gives organisations the power to create consistent and seamless experiences for customers, inspiring loyalty and powering success.
CSX Cloud provides a full omnichannel cloud-based turn-key customer communications solution as a service based on a monthly subscription with no long term commitments. Our easy to use solution and top-notch customer service makes it an easy choice to get started today.
Edify connects businesses with customers and employees with each other. The company’s Business Communications as a Service (BCaaS) platform, Huddle, is the only one that unites unified communications (UC), contact center (CC) and communications platform (API) functionality in a single software solution that lets users move seamlessly among channels within one conversation. Edify removes all the risk of using its cloud-based platform with five free users forever, global availability, real-time redundancy, usage-based pricing and a 100% SLA uptime guarantee.
Envision Click2Coach WFO/WEM
Data from phone, e-mail, web chat and social media interactions can help quickly identify patterns and trends, optimize operations and transform customer relationships. Envision delivers innovative software solutions, in the cloud or on premise, to optimize and engage your workforce. With our integrated line of Click2Coach products, customers get voice of the customer analysis, graphical dashboards, performance management, desktop analytics, speech analytics, interaction and compliance recording, quality management, workforce management and coaching and eLearning.
For more than 20 years, Envision has been providing award winning solutions to our customers that optimize customer experience...
Call back / virtual hold solution
Fonolo's solution can eliminate hold time from your contact center without changing any business process.
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Microsoft Teams Contact Centre
Geomant is enabling organisations to extend the power of Teams even further, to customer interaction with our Buzzeasy Contact Centre. Buzzeasy is a native Teams application that enables Teams users to handle customer interactions effortlessly, across multiple channels including voice, email, webchat and the most popular messaging platforms, such as Messenger, WhatsApp, Viber, etc. By adding Contact Centre functionality to Teams, it becomes an all-in-one collaboration and communications platform not only for internal communications, but for customers as well, in an easy and cost-effective way.
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uContact is an All-in-One contact center solution. Our unique one-on-one customer service makes us perfect for small to medium call centers. Rather than relying on multiple applications we will offer you: - Dialers (Inbound & Outbound)
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|18.)||Intelligent Contacts, Inc|
Intelligent Contact Center Suite
The Intelligent Contact Center harnesses the power of machine learning and predictive analytics to substantially increase agent productivity when compared to manually dialing.
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|19.)||Lieber & Associates|
Technology Acquisition Consulting
L&A provides vendor-independent counsel to select, contract for, design, test, and implement cloud and premise-based systems. The firm has experience with all major vendors and many smaller ones. Lieber & Associates' technology consultants are contact center systems specialists with several decades of experience each.
LiveXchange is an online turnkey service designed to equip your corporation with the means to successfully develop and operate your own remote enabled contact center.
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