7 Ways To Provide Excellent Customer Service
7 ways to provide excellent customer service
In our increasingly digital world, more and more of our professional ventures, daily activities and social interactions are carried out online. Thanks to the explosion in smartphone use and the development of wireless and 4G technology, ordering products and services has never been so simple and the world of e-commerce is reaping the rewards. Take a look at the sales figures from Christmas 2015, for instance. With 57% of all transactions carried out online and over a third of these on smartphones, it is clear that British shoppers are increasingly choosing their armchairs over the nation’s high streets. Online retailers can’t rest easy, however; today’s consumers are savvy and well-informed. Get things right and social media has the potential to send your brand stratospheric and create a loyal customer base. Get things wrong, though, and poor reviews will be all over the net quicker than you can say “Trustpilot”. Here we give our seven top tips for providing the excellent customer service that today’s consumers demand.
1. Multi-channel customer service is crucial
Most people shopping for goods and services online are likely to use a range of channels, including email, social media and your main website. You need to ensure you provide the same excellent customer service on each platform. Providing a well-optimised mobile site, for example, will minimise the risk of potential customers becoming frustrated by navigating a desktop page on their smartphone. Ensure you have clear contact details and your customer service hotline/email displayed prominently on each and every platform.
2. Use social media for constructive feedback
You really can create a fantastic impression by dealing with social media in a positive way. A company Facebook or Twitter page provides great visibility and customers are increasingly using them as a first port of call for inquiries. Ensure you deal with any questions or complaints promptly, take negative feedback on board and never delete posts or get into an argument on a public site – it really is the best way to damage your reputation. It’s far better to offer friendly, supportive assistance, which will cement your reputation as a brand people want to deal with.
3. Online support centre
The vast majority of customers will go straight to a website or Facebook page to have a query resolved. Create an area where they can find additional information about their order; consider an FAQ section or a link to delivery tracking, for example.
4. Online chatting
Increasingly used online, a web chat facility is a fantastic way for a customer to access a “real person” quickly and without the hassle of sitting on hold on the phone. This is certainly a great way for an online retailer to build a trustworthy reputation. Aim to man your web chat at least eight hours a day and set up a messaging service for out-of-hours queries.
5. Don’t keep people waiting
There is nothing more frustrating as a consumer than having a problem with your order and not getting a response from the company. Long waits on the phone and emails that are unanswered for days really are unacceptable and will do little for your online reputation. Make it your mission to deal with all enquiries as quickly as you can.
6. Keep track of your consumer interactions
By keeping an accurate record of what your customers are doing, you can far more easily respond in the event of a problem. By using a customer reference number that is linked to your records, you can avoid consumers having to repeat themselves on the phone and can accurately pinpoint their order history or interactions.
7. Be a “wow” company!
Exceed the expectations of your customers and you will see them coming back time and time again. Provide consistently excellent customer service and see your comments shared on social media and your brand receiving top ratings on review sites. Go above and beyond and you will be rewarded with a loyal and growing customer base.