Sam Walton, the founder of Walmart famously said – “The goal as a company is to have customer service that is not just the best, but legendary”.
In today’s competitive business world, it’s not just sunshine and rainbows. Businesses are bombarded with endless customer issues and of course, stories of poor support experiences. When the margin for error is so low, how do you improve your customer service?
Resolving the queries is not enough, you have to optimize the response times, pay attention to urgent queries and ensure that no customer feels underrated. Also, apart from working on new strategies to grab more customers, you need to ensure that your customer nurturing skills are on point!
Only when you get your customers to come back again, and again, can you turn them into loyal brand advocates. Because loyalty doesn’t happen overnight or over the first two or three interactions with your brand.
To ensure that the dicey game of customer happiness remains in your favor, we share 10 excellent customer support tips. Take a thorough read and find out what it takes to keep your customers satisfied, happy and loyal!
Let’s get started!
10 Awesome Customer Support Tips & Examples
1. Visualize the Needs of Your Customers
Don’t keep waiting for your customers to tell you about their experiences or problems. 87% of the customers wish to be contacted proactively by a company for support matters. When you anticipate the needs of your customers, you send a message that your business cares.
Further, excellent customer service doesn’t solely focus on the needs of the new customers. You must focus on your existing customers and figure out their future needs based on their previous purchases.
Always remember, chocolate and icecreams might be universal favorites, but you cannot expect everybody to like the same flavor!
Dig into the customer data to gather actionable insights into the recurring as well as unusual purchases. Address the dangling purchases in the abandoned cart and send reminders with lucrative deals that have the highest probability of conversion.
Take time to send these proactive messages via a channel that they use the most.
2. Excellent Customer Support Is a Team Effort
You might have an expert support agent with the best credentials in terms of customers, conversions and queries resolved. But, a single agent is no help when serving hundreds of customers at the same time.
You and your employees need to understand that every person in the company shoulders excellent customer service. When your teams work together, both your reps and customers benefit from it. You can resolve more problems in less amount of time and build stronger relations with employees and customers.
Foster a company culture where everyone works, keeping the result in mind – happy customers! Encourage every employee to be a valuable resource for the customers as well as the fellow workmates.
Educate and train your teams to do “their bit” towards customer happiness. They must know when is the right time to escalate and how they can enhance their support skills.
3. Focus on the Entire Customer Journey
Generally, businesses interact with the customers on standalone touchpoints in their journeys such as:
- First purchase
- First visit
- Problem resolution
- Cancellation of order etc.
However, studies reveal that focusing on the entire customer journey instead of these standalone touchpoints is one of the vital customer service skills. By doing this, you keep your customers “in the loop” or the “sales funnel” and keep the churn at bay!
Don’t forget your customers after they have made a purchase or renewed their subscription. Offer them a walk-through of the various benefits they can reap from the association and how they can make the most of their journeys with you.
Everyone likes a surprise now and then. So, send personalized offers and newsletters to show them that you “understand” their needs and “value” them.
4. Leverage Customer Support Software
This is one of the most reliable and relevant customer support tips in the current times when the competition is cut-throat, and industry disruptions are rampant.
Having a smart, efficient, and feature-rich help desk tool for customer service, such as ProProfs Help Desk, can reduce your burdens and open new avenues to customer delight.
It can help you via:
- Automated ticket conversions
- Canned responses for frequently asked queries
- Knowledge base for a swift resolution
- Ticket management for auto-routing, prioritizing issues, escalations, etc.
- Detailed reports and advanced analysis of customer service performance
- Doing a thorough pulse check via surveys, forms, and polls
A powerful help desk for customer support helps you create the right support system and empower the customers with self-service as well. It reduces your call volume by 10% and frees up 25% of your support resources to focus on more crucial tasks.
So, invest in an intuitive and robust help desk software that is compatible with your unique business needs for more streamlined and efficient support.
5. Listen to Your Customers, Understand Them, and Then Speak
Unhappy, angry, unreasonable, and frustrated customers are not news for your support team. Still, every support agent has a different response and reaction in such situations. While some customers might choose to express their dissatisfaction in stiff words, others might get rude or downright offensive.
For instance, take a look at this customer support example.
This is a classic case of a customer riling about getting the delivery canceled because of non-availability. And, the way Amazon tackled the situation is surely one of the excellent tips for good customer service for handling disgruntled customers.
Educate your reps to respond to such customers in a more accommodating manner. Tell them that any person spending money on a product that turns out to be faulty is going to be unhappy. So, begin with acknowledging the fact and listen to the customers.
Catering to such customers is easier when you have an understanding of human emotions. So, focus on listening and understanding the reason for their behavior, and then respond.
6. Surpass Customer Expectations
The customer expectations in relation to support have increased over the years, and they expect the brands to understand this. So, the traditional IVR support with a static “busy or unavailable” tone no longer works.
When you surpass your customers’ expectations, they are more likely to feel valued and become loyal. Now, you must surpass this “expectation” in terms of brand offerings as well as service standards. Many commendable brands serve as examples in this regard, such as Glossier, JetBlue Airways, and Ritz Carlton, etc.
These brands surpass the customer expectations in various ways:
- “Ask” the customers “what” they want next
- “Pay” in real money when they fail to deliver the services promised to them
- “Out of the bounds” customer service that speaks volumes about their business ethics and customer forwardness
While all your customers expect the discounts, they might not expect a discount or offer only after completing the registration on your website. Study your customers and figure out the things that make them happy in relation to your brand.
7. Gather, Process, and Work on Customer Feedback
Customer feedback is a powerful tool that allows you to learn more about your customers and their experiences with your brand. Gather their feedback via small surveys, polls, or questionnaires. A smart customer support software comes in handy for this as well.
Leveraging AMP emails for the same is another one of the excellent customer service tips to follow. It comes with a number of templates and a huge library of questions, with which you can compile a delightful survey in minutes. You can share the feedback or survey via various channels, such as emails, social media, and website pop-ups, etc. Social media management tools allow businesses to handle feedback from customers. AMP emails allow your customers to complete the survey right inside their inboxes.
However, don’t just stop after gathering the feedback. It is important to process the collected information and ensure that you work towards utilizing the same. Modify and upgrade your brand offerings to make them more relevant for your customers based on the survey results.
Finally, take one more step towards customer delight by sharing the results with your customers once you have done the changes based on customer feedback.
8. Personalization Is the Key to Customer Happiness
Personalized support is one of the best tips to improve customer service. Every customer has a different temperament and expectations related to support.
For example, take a look at the following stats:
- Studies show that 62% of the customers prefer email for support, 47% prefer live chat, and 41% of them prefer in-person support.
- 13% of the customers get information without contacting your support agents.
- 33% of the customers consider friendly and knowledgeable agents as the most important aspect of customer service.
Hence, it is quite evident that you have to personalize your support as per the customer’s preferences. You can automate this by leveraging the smart AI-based customer service bots that can ask the customers about their preferences right at the beginning.
Personalization goes a long way to make your customers feel valued and cared for.
Further, personalize your perks, discounts, and take that “extra step” to make your customers happy. While your new customers might cherish an extra 5% discount on their first purchase, your regulars might prefer a personal support assistant.
Hence, personalize your perks!
9. Equip the Support Team with the Right Educational Resources
Equipping your reps with the right in-house educational resources is one of the best tips for better customer service. For example, the audio recordings of specific query resolution cases or the written accounts of some support cases can be used for training.
Many customer service software tools allow you to automatically convert customer communication into an article that you can share in your employee portal or community forum section. Such write-ups can be an excellent source of learning for the new agents as well.
You can also keep them organized in one place to form a huge in-house knowledge repository for training and educating the employees from time to time. Apart from the in-house resources, you must invest in external educational resources, such as webinars, seminars, and training, etc.
10. Empower Your Customers with Self-Service
50% of the millennials think of self-service as a part of the brand promise, and 60% of the customers prefer automated customer support solutions for faster resolution of simple issues. Self-service is becoming increasingly popular as more and more customers are becoming tech-savvy.
Let your customers discover solutions by providing them self-service options via mobile app, bots, or websites. Create a dedicated knowledge base that consists of insightful help articles, FAQs, video tutorials, and more.
You can also provide community forums where customers can refer to the previous troubleshooting and query resolutions to solve similar problems.
Excellent Customer Service – Key to Sustainable and Futuristic Growth
Customer experience and customer service differentiate you in a sea of competitors even when you have no unique brand offerings!
Focusing on your customers’ requirements and brand expectations allows you to curate highly personalized and targeted customer experiences that fuel your growth.
While a great customer support system is not built overnight, following the customer support tips shared here can surely minimize your effort in doing so.
Now that you have the key milestones for the customer success roadmap take the first step towards customer delight and mark the start of sustainable business transformation.