As we usher in the new year, it’s a perfect time for businesses to set new goals and strategies. If your small business has been struggling to provide adequate customer service, you may want to consider revamping your customer support approach. With customers increasingly factoring in the level of customer service they receive from a company, 90% of Americans report that customer service is a critical consideration in their decision-making when selecting companies to patronize in 2021.
To help you build a better customer service strategy, we’ve listed some key steps you can follow to improve your business’s customer service.
1. Evaluate Your Current Customer Support Process
Before embarking on any changes, you’ll need to evaluate your current customer service approach to identify the areas that require improvement. Take a look at your customer service ticketing system, help desk, and phone communication to determine problem areas. Be sure to consider all customer queries and requests, identify bottlenecks in your system, and evaluate the performance of your agents overall. Remember, you cannot improve what you don’t know!
2. Set Goals
Once you’ve identified the shortcomings in your customer service process, set specific goals to address them. Rather than trying to improve everything at once, focus on the priority goals that you can realistically accomplish within 12 months. By setting goals within reasonable timeframes, you can monitor your progress more effectively and identify areas that require further attention.
3. Implement the Right Customer Service Software
Replacing your outdated customer service system with a well-rounded CRM software is a priority goal that can significantly enhance your customer satisfaction level. As you select the right CRM software, focus on integration with existing business applications and e-commerce systems, user-friendliness, centralization of customer information, and multi-channel communication abilities.
4. Train Help Desk Agents
Your customer service agents are the face of your business and key to providing quality customer experiences. Properly train and equip them for customer support by investing in selecting the right staff, teaching them company and product knowledge, communication skills, conflict resolution, and friendliness. A study showed that 68% of customers noted the importance of customer service representatives to their experience with a company.
5. Provide More Digital Channels
Online shopping thrived during the pandemic, causing businesses to provide more digital contact options as customers struggled with traditional ones. Incorporating digital customer support channels like social media, live chats, or self-serve knowledge bases improves convenience for customers and increases your accessibility to them.
6. Continually Analyze Data
When implementing the new customer service upgrade and taking your customer service from average to impressive, measuring and analyzing data is critical to enhancing your customer service. Continually analyzing data offers insights into your customer sentiment and preferences, allowing you to track patterns emerging from compliments, criticism, or complaints, and improves customer retention rates.
7. Reward High-Value Customers
Your business should always prioritize acknowledging customers’ worth, particularly the high-value ones. Rewards like exclusive offers, birthday/holiday gift vouchers, discounted membership, or personalized messages provide additional motivation to keep them loyal to your brand.
In conclusion, statistics have shown that customer service is a critical differentiating factor between businesses. By focusing on your small business’s customer service and incorporating these key steps, you can stand out from your competitors in 2021.