What does good customer service look like today and how can you measure it?
With the digital ecosystem being what it is today, and with everyone being connected, customer service has shifted from the simple process it was a few years ago to a dynamic, all-hour operation. Often organisations pride themselves on their customer service, they see it as a main differentiator, but if everyone says the same thing will you really stand out?
So ask yourself: are you able to offer exceptional customer service, or is it the same as everyone else’s?
How can you know if you’re delivering good service?
I’ve been asked this question a hundred times before and the answer is the same every time. You have to do a thorough analysis of your service touchpoints. You also have to understand exactly what each point does and what the customer expectations are. Then make it possible to evaluate and get feedback from your customers as often as you can. If you don’t have an easily accessible “review your service” mechanism in your business, then you’re at a disadvantage.
This feedback will allow you to look at your company critically, identify successful engagements and channels, but also to spot the areas that aren’t working. Scrutinise each response and how you respond, i.e. what you say, how you say it and when you say it. You’ll be amazed at how honest your customers will be if you allow them the opportunity to provide this kind of feedback.
The interesting thing in business today is that customers jump at the chance to critique service, and they often go loud and far with their comments. Receiving positive feedback however is often overlooked or not even done. So make it easy and provide them with that channel.
What should you demand from your customer service agents?
The following criteria is what I deem as non-negotiable when it comes to good customer service.
They need to understand the product they’re offering support on. This is crucial for giving quick and efficient service to your customers. Spend time training and simulate different question types to train your team. Also remember it’s impossible for them to know everything, so how they react at times when they don’t have the answer is as important. They need to tell the customer they’ll look into it and get back to them at an agreed time and date.
Friendliness and good customer service are completely connected. Did you know you can hear when someone smiles in their voice and demeanor? It’s a no-brainer, but so often overlooked.
Customer service agents need to be consistently present through all available channels. They also need to take into account that each channel will need its own specific response. For instance, a webchat calls for answers rather than a host of links to click on, and a social media conversation needs more of a “PR” reply because a comment or tweet will be available for all to see.
Always follow up, whether manually or through automation. People often ignore a follow-up email, but if an issue wasn’t resolved then it’s an opportunity for the customer to continue the conversation. Close the loop to ensure satisfaction.
These elements can be implemented at little or no cost. However technology does help us become more efficient. There are a whole host of solutions available that focus on customer service improvement. The questions is: are you willing to invest in this part of your business and be one up on your competition, and how much does one more happy customer mean to you?
Chat to us about good customer service. We have a solution that could help your business.