Customer support is the delivery of exceptional service to customers prior, during, and even after a sale. The perception of successful interactions relies on how employees “can adjust themselves to the client’s personality”. As such, it is extremely important to train all new and existing staff on good customer service skills. In a competitive business environment, every dollar that is spent effectively and appropriately will reap rewards for years to come.
Although most companies spend a tremendous amount of money and manpower in advertisements and marketing campaigns, very few use the resources effectively to enhance the customer experience. Many companies believe that comprehensive marketing campaigns are key to customer satisfaction, but research has shown this is not so. Most satisfied customers return to the same store or company time again because of excellent service. In fact, most people do not remember or truly appreciate how their experience with a company or product compared to another. A comprehensive customer care program will enhance customer satisfaction because it provides excellent service from start to finish.
Knowledge Base Customer support teams need access to accurate, up-to-date information in order to make best product decisions. Without a well-developed knowledge base, they are unable to determine which products, services, and offers deliverables are more likely to benefit the customer. Knowledge is power and understanding the complete scope of your customer base is paramount to your success. Developing a solid knowledge base starts by acquiring the skills and tools necessary to analyze your customer’s needs and expectations. It includes knowledge bases such as:
Effective Team Appraisal Customer support is often associated with helping customers, but effective team appraisals are just as essential. When assessing the effectiveness of your support staff, look for signs of inefficiency such as: poor behavior, unorganized work, low quality products, and/or delays. You want to eliminate the telltale signs of ineffective support; however, you also want to retain the skill set, personality, and knowledge base of your best performing employees. As with the customer support skills they already possess, keeping them should be at the top of your priority list.
Effective Communication As previously mentioned, customer service teams are charged with helping customers solve their problems and make positive memories with them. If your employees lack the communication skills and interpersonal skills necessary to effectively handle customer issues, you can expect problems to arise. Remember, “the best policies are no policies.” Effective communication means both good listening skills and the ability to effectively convey the right information to your customer. A thorough understanding of your customer’s needs goes beyond basic problem solving and involves engaging and connecting with them on a deeper level.
A key component of every business is its customer service strategy. However, if you feel like things are constantly getting worse and you are beginning to notice a disconnect in how your business is perceived by customers and your employees, it may be time to take a long hard look at your tactics and approach. Sometimes it takes a new approach to help you get the results you desire. By taking a hard look at what your company is doing right and wrong, you can quickly identify where any improvements need to be made.