The Value of Great Customer Service & How You Can Improve Your Customer Service
What key components make up a great business? There are many factors that play into having a successful, thriving company, but aside from the quality of the actual work you perform for your clientele, great customer service is definitely at the top of the list! A receptionist or customer service representative is usually the first person your customers will encounter when seeking assistance from your establishment, so that first impression is likely to weigh heavily when it comes to pursuing your services. If you are seeking how to make your customer service stand out and increase customer satisfaction, below you will find a list of ways to help you get your company where you want it to be.
1. Empathize with Your Customer’s Needs
Unfortunately, as a small business, it isn’t always so simple to find the right person (people) to run your office at all times, or to ensure that every client’s needs will be met in a timely manner. One major problem this can present is that even the nicest staff in the world can sometimes feel overwhelmed with a high volume of calls and can end up losing that personal touch. That warmth is vital when it comes to building relationships with your clients, and the following suggestions could ensure your customer consistently receives that extra care:
- Understand their concern is valid to them, and help them feel comfortable opening up. This starts by making sure they are always greeted by a kind, pleasant voice on the other end of the phone.
- Take the time to answer their questions immediately if possible. Sometimes that can’t happen, but reassuring them that you will keep them updated can go a long way.
- Keep calm & patient, especially when conversing with unhappy customer. They may just feel a strong need to be heard, and that’s okay.
- An answering service or shared receptionist like those available at AnswerAide can effectively assist in taking the pressure off of your current staff by breaking up the workload when it gets to be too much.
2. Follow Up with Clients
Sometimes, having a front desk receptionist just isn’t enough to improve your customer service, because there are multiple tasks he or she is expected to do, and with the current influx in calls many businesses are currently experiencing, there may not be enough time in an 8-10 hour day to get everything done, plus place outgoing courtesy calls. These types of calls can really improve your customer service, and a team of shared receptionists could really help your company’s productivity by:
- reducing response time experienced by clients when there are many calls coming through at once
- removing the need for impersonal voice recordings by providing friendly, immediate service
- conducting/improving customer satisfaction surveys or asking short after-visit questions
- providing live answering service for calls coming in after-hours
- checking in after a service has been rendered and/or after an issue has been resolved
- use a CRM, such as Keap or Infusionsoft to keep track of your clients, and when it’s time to follow-up with them.
3. Knowledgeable & Informed Staff
We all know what it’s like to speak to a customer service associate who isn’t particularly helpful or seems like they aren’t sure if the answer they are giving you is the right one. A few important steps in providing excellent customer service is to make sure the receptionist handling your company’s phone calls is:
- to be familiar with the product and/or services your company offers,
- ensuring client hears certainty in their voice whether they know the right answer or assistance is needed, and
- keeping up to date with any changes, updates, or promotions your company may be offering.
- When this seems difficult, hiring a shared receptionist with AnswerAide is a great resource for staying informed, as studying the ins and outs of your company is a top priority. This can go a long way to improve your customer service.
4. Know Your Clients
It can be extremely tricky to run a business that caters specifically to your clientele when you don’t know much about them. We have already delved into how you can improve your relationship with those you aim to serve, and this segment focuses on how their experience can be customized to fit their needs as well as those of others. A great way to connect deeper with your clients is to:
- always address them by name,
- give positive interaction,
- ask questions when appropriate, and to
- engage them when discussing something that concerns them.
5. Make Your Company Unforgettable
Going the extra mile when it comes to caring for your customers’ needs can go a lot farther than most people realize when you want to improve your customer service. We have all encountered a disgruntled client or two who obviously isn’t happy with their experience, but some unsatisfied customers may not make such a fuss before sneaking away to a competitor. When you go above and beyond to not only meet the needs of your clients, they are much more likely to notice and remember that kind thing you did to earn their loyalty. Some ways to do this are listed below:
- Always answer, always respond. Customers know they can depend on you when someone is always available to take their call.
- Earn your clients’ trust by ensuring all information they receive is correct.
- Be open and honest with them; if you under-promise and over-deliver, all they’ll remember is that you were more efficient than they expected.
- Guarantee to accommodate their needs with no risk to them; if they aren’t happy with a service, your business will keep trying until you get it right.
- Simplify the refund process. If a service doesn’t end well, overcomplicating the protocol for submitting a claim could result in losing that customer’s business for life.
The Benefits of Virtual Assistants
An answering service like AnswerAide can be an excellent resource when your company is unable to run a 24/7/365 operation with a crew of in-house receptionists. That extra compassion each caller receives every time they call can go a long way, and we always end the conversation on a positive note. We also offer shared receptionists to ensure that your clients always speak to the same representative assigned to them, and we handle their accounts with the same care they would expect from a superior company like yours. If you are looking to improve your customer service that your business gives its clients, give us a call today! It would be our pleasure to help.