Why Customer Care Matters

When things go wrong, you are likely to have one of two types of customer present: the ‘it’s ok, let’s get it sorted’ proactive customer or the ‘what do you mean there is a problem?’ angry as hellfire customer.
Both types of customer are in need of your help. And while you might have a call centre or chatbot that can answer questions, do those same functions have any real power to resolve issues without escalation?
To improve your customer service standards, you need to start with the following.

Robust Response Systems

There are tools that you can use to ensure that your business is fast, responsive and accurate.
If you are using social media, it takes no time to set up an auto-reply in DM. You can also easily set up a chatbot on your website to take control of customer interactions.
A FAQ page is a must for all online businesses, be it B2B, B2C or C2C hosts. Answering a list of the 10 commonly asked questions gives your customers to source answers and take control of the information that they need.
Your website should also have clear customer service contacts so that if people need to reach out, they can do so with ease. A phone number, email or chat are all ways that allow people to converse with your business, and often it will be to compliment you, so make it easy.

SOPs

Your customer service needs to have standard operating procedures (SOPs), just like all areas of your business, but they need to be more flexible and reviewed on a regular basis.
You can ease much of the pressure on your business overall by empowering your customer service team to take direct action. For example, if an online purchase has failed and the customer calls to discuss the situation, the customer service agent should have a list of questions in a flow chart manner that allows them to uncover the source of the issue. The customer service agent should then be presented with solutions, such as; the problem is with the bank, so to answer the customer, you will forward them an email detailing the issue and they can pass that to the bank, or; the problem is with the company, so the company will take all the details and resolve the matter in a fixed timeframe and message the customer when it is resolved.
Giving your customer service agents power to make decisions and resolve situations without escalation to management means that your business is more productive and your customers are more likely to continue to use your service because minor issues are easily resolved.

Have a Company Customer Care Philosophy

Creating a company customer care philosophy will help everyone understand how to respond to customer issues or comments. These guidelines, while they do not have to be made public to your customers, will help all your customer care agents to respond in the way that represents your business.
If your online travel company has an in-house philosophy that all customer requests will be responded to with positive language and open-ended questions, then your staff will have a clear picture of who they need to be at work. If you do not have guidelines in place, it is hard to redirect staff who are not responding in the way that represents your business because they don’t know who the business is supposed to be.

We are all customers, but we aren’t all business owners. It is easy to create the customer service response team that you want and need when you imagine yourself on the receiving end of a conversation. Brainstorm with your team and be the aggressive, difficult customer looking for a discount or free offer; be the quiet customer who is understanding and responsive. Test your team by having them react in different ways. Once everyone understands that we all have good and bad days, and we all have different expectations and degrees of ‘ok’, your team will be better equipped to tackle some of the details of how great customer care is the key to lead generation and closing sales.

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