What is the most important thing you can do to reduce churn and increase word-of-mouth referrals? Improving customer support is the obvious answer but it’s often overlooked.
Your customers always remember direct contact with your customer support team. So, no matter how good your product or service is, it’s crucial to give importance to customer support.
It is already known that the industry is saturated with competitors, but with good customer support, you can have an edge over your competitors and have excellent growth.
Offer Solutions To The Customer
Today’s marketing has the role as much about delighting existing customers as it is attracting new ones.
You have to make sure your customers have a great experience using your product or service so they not only buy again but also spread the word through referrals or social media.
Customer loyalty is your ultimate goal, but that can only be achieved if you are in good with providing them excellent customer experience.
Some tips to improve your communication skills to attract more customers are:
i) Be a good listener and practice active listening and be patient and listen to your customer’s problem carefully and properly.
ii) Learn to use positive and non-offensive language to communicate with your customers and try to see the problem through the customer’s eyes and imagine how it makes the customer feel.
This step is very useful and important in customer support because the customer will be more receptive if they feel understood by your words. It can also de-escalate conflict and create a more enjoyable interaction with your company.
iii) You must have deep knowledge about the product and the way they work, this way, you’ll be able to help customers when they’re troubleshooting issues, and you’ll know product tips and tricks you can share to make the product easier to use.
Practice Patience And Consistency
One of the most essential skills to develop is the ability to be patient even when your customers are not. Customers will get angry and take the frustration out on you.
No matter how many times you explain the solution to a problem, customers will still not understand the solution to the problem.
Each scenario will test your patience. The key is to remember you are the face of the company at that moment. A customer’s negativity shouldn’t affect your behavior towards them.
Some steps to develop more patience:
- To be successful in tackling customer issues, you need to be patient. When it comes to employee relations, business negotiations, and communications, as well as the achievement of the strategic goals, patience plays a key role in them.
- Be confident about your product and listen to the customer’s problem properly and think analytically about the possible solutions and consider not rushing into conclusions.
- Have a stable state of mind when working and maintain your cool. Don’t get swayed away by words.
Make Use Of Automation
Automating customer support with AI customer service helps in reducing human effort, manual tasks, and also offers alternative solutions. Therefore, it saves time and effort of both the sales agent and the customer.
An integrated platform offers to incorporate provisions and processes that allow customers to retrieve information or answers at faster speeds without requiring the intervention of a customer support representative or any contact with an organization’s support team.
To create a system that effectively replaces certain repetitive parts of customer service with an automated mechanism is the objective. With this automated customer service, you are making strides to help customers get what they want almost instantly.
Along with a lead management system, you can segregate customers and prioritize the follow-ups and reduce the manual segregation.
Some benefits of using automated customer support are
1. Empower Customers To Help Themselves
Automated customer service is about handing the main systems of preliminary support to the customer. For example, by triggering the right prompts on a website, they will be able to get quick answers.
This will save a tremendous amount of time and will allow visitors to use that information much faster to complete the tasks that required the information. They can also get the information at a time of their choosing because unlike humans, workflow automation tools don’t need sleep.
So, any form of self-support is available 24X7. Automated customer support reduces agent interaction. It’s true that great agent conversations can gain higher customer satisfaction.
But getting forced to contact customer care for every little piece of information is tedious no matter how helpful or friendly the support executive is.
2. Reduce Your Costs and Overheads
By setting up automated customer support, a lot of time and money which you would have to spend on recruitment and training is saved.
Moreover, there is usually only a one-time investment for implementing your automation systems and there’s always an option to upgrade your automation tools when you require.
3. Improve Agent Productivity
By integrating your ticketing system, the ticket volume gets reduced since the customer won’t need to register it as a ticket at your helpdesk.
With the repetitive questions no longer on the agent’s agenda, their inboxes become less cluttered and it frees up valuable time for them.
Of course, reducing agent workload is only the first step. With this time on their hands, support agents can focus on performing tasks that will add more value to both the customer and their organization.
This also means more important and complex issues can be given the attention which they deserve.
Significantly, agents can now focus on having impactful conversations with customers.
Talk In A Positive Language
In today’s world, people are under enough stress. So the way to win their heart and business, is you should be the one who takes their stress away.
They should feel comfortable around you while doing business with you. Make them want to come back. By focusing on using positive language in customer service, is a good way to do this.
Words have that power. They can help you create a long, trustful relationship with customers. We know we can’t always give them what they want, but instead, we can be positive and nice in the way we say it to them.
When delivering bad news, it may appear easier just to blurt out any old thing, but there are better ways to do it. Positive language is telling a customer what can you do for them, rather than what you can’t do for them.
It is mainly about seeing all transactions from the customer’s perspective and highlighting the benefits of a particular action to them at the same time. It is about replacing negative words and phrases and emphasizing possible solutions which, in the end, is what customers care about most.
1. Use the CARP Method (Control, Acknowledge, Refocus, Problem-solve)
CARP gives insights on these four pillars of communication i.e Control, Acknowledge, Re-focus, and Problem Solve. Complaints are never pleasant, but they are a necessary part of member service.
Excellent companies will use complaints to find ways to improve on the product. Deal with complaints using the CARP method.
Maintain control of the situation by allowing the member to voice the full situation before you acknowledge the issue.
The issue should be acknowledged by restating the problem to make sure all parties understand.
Refocus the member toward what you can do for him or her, then tell the member how the problem will be solved. If there are options, present them in the “refocus” portion of the complaint.
Control – It’s the key to reasserting control in which we behave in ways that send the subtle sub-message.
Acknowledge – It is also important that the angry person sees that you are understanding his/her emotional state and the situation. Two working techniques to apply here are empathy and active listening.
Refocus – Refocusing mainly involves making the transition from dealing with the customer’s emotions to dealing with the actual problem faced by the customer.
Problem-Solve – Problem-solving techniques involve actions like getting and giving information, suggesting possibilities while appearing helpful, offering more choices, and following through the conversation.
Listen Actively and Pay Attention To Their Experience
Active listening is the foundation of effective communication. Active listening in customer service means being totally focused on the words that the customer is saying, understanding what those words mean, and responding in a manner that validates what they’re saying.
Why is active listening so important in customer service?
Every customer call has a real person behind them, who’s looking for guidance and solution to a problem. It’s critical to engage in active listening in order to make that person feel truly heard, understood, and served.
The more empathy you have with your customers, the more you listen to them, the more they will value their relationship with you.
Best customer feedback
If you listen to your customers, even if that’s just on social media or basic feedback surveys via survey software, you gather a wealth of information about how your customers view your product.
Companies have made a success of pivoting to meet customer demands and it is clear to anyone that the best way to grow your company is by implementing customers’ feedback.
When you do that, existing customers will appreciate you even more. Actively listening to your customers is such a successful approach that more and more companies have switched to it over older models.
It fosters understanding and empathy
Most people call or contact customer service if they’ve encountered a problem with a company’s product or service.
That means, more often than not, call center agents have to exhibit a great deal of calm and patience as they navigate each customer’s concerns.
Active listening is especially critical in situations where customers are upset, frustrated, and perhaps exhibiting some hostility.
By asking follow-up questions, relaying back their situation, and empathizing with their frustrations, customers feel truly understood and taken care of.
Use The Right Customer Support CRM Tool
The most important part of your business is your customers. To stay better connected and get the help they need, customer service software or CRM alternative tool is used.
It takes trust and communication, which allows businesses to build strong leadership in the market using customer service software.
To build that trust, there is a need to have plenty of open lines of communication in the relationship between customer and executive.
That’s tricky with so many digital means for customers to get in touch. Providing a modern customer experience.
Best ways in which customers can be supported with customer service software are:
The ticketing system software turns a support-related customer interaction into a ticket (often referred to as a “support ticket”).
To simplify how tickets can be tracked, prioritized, and solved by customer service representatives, ticketing systems are used.
When a customer has an issue during their customer experience or while using your product, a support ticket is created.
Workflows can be customized as it is built around support tickets and they can be personalized according to the business requirements and can be configured to a specific agent’s roles and preferences.
A very popular form of customer service is offering support via chat. Live chat software can be used by agents to communicate with customers in real-time and it has been seen to be very effective in this field. It can be done easily on the desktop or on mobile.
Live chat is the main strategy for customer support used by executives. The chat option can be placed at opportune moments in the customer’s journey, like right before they’re about to make a purchase or if they’re stuck in a help guide.
CRM and customer support go hand-in-hand, they’re both important technology tools for creating a better customer experience.
A CRM system along with IVR service is tied many times to the sales processes, incoming leads, following up on prospects, and closing deals.
That data about customers can provide much critical information about them, like who they are, what they do, and how they use your products and services.
Having connected capabilities between CRM and support makes it much easier to tie critical interactions together, which may result in better customer experiences.
The best customer support software will not only offer flexibility beyond CRM but also tie in external information for even more capable customer service.
Close Your Communication Correctly
Conclusions are just as important as your first impressions. Too often, support representatives are in a hurry to attend to the next ticket in line. This can ruin the experience for a customer who’s communicating with them at the moment. Your eagerness to solve one more ticket could cost you a customer.
So make sure that your representatives end their conversations well. Even if that extends the chat or call by a few minutes. Your objective should be targeted on how to end the conversation in such a way that leaves your customer happy and satisfied.
Ending the conversation with a happy voice saying “Thank you so much for your time today. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you need any help in the future.” leaves trust and faith in your customer towards your product or company.
Everyone should be feeling the customers’ pain points. When the whole company is encouraged to learn the basics of customer service, knowledge of problems, bugs, and features becomes illuminated for the entire team.
There’s no faster way to make improvements that drive your business forward. Using the right customer support tools and automation goes a long way.