In a world where online sales have narrowed the playing field, customer service and support are more important than ever. In addition to the time, energy and resources spent promoting your brand, set some aside to put towards enhancing your customer support so consumers will leave with a lasting, positive impression of your company; here’s how.
- Be a good listener. Acknowledge every customer complaint or concern, whether verbal or written. Knowing your company can identify with, and validate, these concerns shows that you are genuinely interested in finding a resolution, reinforcing consumer confidence. Avoid using a lot of technical jargon in your responses and take a clear, direct approach.
- Liven things up. A live-chat option combines the best of both worlds: talking to a live person in real time without the hassle of waiting on hold or navigating a complicated phone tree to reach an agent.
- Be social. As technology and consumer preferences change, your customer support system should change too. Incorporating social media as part of your support structure meets the needs of today’s customers while allowing you to respond effectively and efficiently across every social avenue.
- Help your customers to help themselves. Including self-serve alternatives such as a FAQ section, user forum or portal, allows consumers to quickly and easily locate the answers to their questions.
- Hire the best. Staffing your customer and technical support phone and live chat lines should be done with care as these brand ambassadors are the first, and sometimes only, contact customers have with your company. Choose individuals who are trustworthy and talented with excellent communication skills. Give them the tools, resources and support needed to resolve each inquiry, including the ability to compensate customers without always having to ask a manager for verification, setting reasonable limits to avoid costly issues.
- Engage your customers. A toll-free number with a live person on the other end gives a positive impression and boosts consumer confidence in your company. For unusually busy times, offer a call back option rather than leaving customers on hold.
Customer support is often the first line of contact between your customers and your company, and is a direct reflection on your brand. These simple, yet effective steps can help elevate your level of support, leaving customers with a great impression of your SMB.