Customer expectations continue to rise with each passing day, which means it’s time for a hard look at your company’s customer service practices. The first question to address: is your company delivering the type of experience customers expect?
After all, customer service is literally the face of your company. Any misstep on the part of customer service and it can spell trouble for your overall reputation and, ultimately, your bottom line. You may lose customers and struggle to bring on new ones (because of poor customer service reviews). On the flip side, a great customer service department can result in loyal customers and new customers (via word of mouth and great reviews).
Here’s what the latest research tells us customers expect along with examples of companies successfully meeting those expectations:
- More personalization: In an age when business and personal interactions can be anonymous and impersonal, customers want very personalized experiences. Retailer Zappos invites customers to call, chat or e-mail with customer service representatives for as long as they’d like. Zappos employees strive to get to know individual customers, calling them by their first names and getting to know them a bit while they are providing answers or addressing customer service issues.
- Provide more ways to interact: Customers demand self-service, voice, digital, mobile and social channels to interact with a company, and they still expect each to deliver a personalized experience. The mobile phone is the most preferred tool; however, in recent years the use of other channels has risen: Web self-service, online communities and chat features, for example. While making multiple channels available, it remains vital that communication is relatively easy and fast and of course, friendly. Disney does a great job of offering a high-quality omni-channel experience to customers.
- Listen closely, respond quickly: Companies need to respond to feedback and customer issues quickly and let customers know what’s been done to remedy the situation. The customer service experience needs to be friendly and offer a quick resolution. Nike has mastered this approach. For example the athletic shoe giant created a Twitter account just for responding to customer inquiries and issues: @NikeService. Nike Service makes it easier for customers to reach out when they have a problem or a question they want answered and is known for its quick response and fast resolutions. Now, more than ever, it’s important to make customer support easy and convenient for all customers.
The most important thing is for the customer service rep to do their best to address the concerns brought forth by the customer. Sometimes a customer just wants to feel heard. If you can provide that service, you’re halfway there, if not more.
Make sure that your customers are represented by highly trained and knowledgeable customer service agents that will go above and beyond for your customers. Give us a call at Zedd Customer Solutions.