As a student, I found customer service or human resource management to be the most boring part of my course. Often, I thought to myself as to why would someone include these in the curriculum? It made me realise as the years went on and also with some practical exposure as to why customer service is such a big deal. Companies lose out on their clients, year after year, and that’s what makes businesses shut down.
Read Part 6 of The Ultimate Customer Guide to know more about how to avoid losing customers by implementing excellent servicing tips.
- Treat the customers as if you cannot work without them. Well, that’s true because, without them, your business will suffer. If you provide a great product replete with resplendent features, they’ll be flattered. As they say, the first impression is the best impression.
- But do focus on the after-sales support as some businesses, though very meticulous about the finesse of products, they offer almost nothing afterwards.
- One of the foremost steps begins with knowing your product in and out. Half-knowledge is dangerous and at times, you will come across people who know more than you do, maybe through passion or experience.
- Engage and re-engage with customers. There’s nothing better than getting your old customers back. Social media is a great way- Offer giveaways!
- Set metrics. Sounds silly but I’ve come across people who say they feel more motivated when they establish metrics and deadlines for themselves that they need to work on. Introspect as to what can work the best for your business in dire situations, like the lockdown that we’ve had or the impending ones.
- Empathise and understand- What would have you done had you been in their shoes. Be soft-spoken but firm if you cannot go lower than what you have offered. Show respect and gratitude for their time even if they do not make a purchase. Remember, people will forget what you say or what they hear but they will not forget how you made them feel. Simply exchanging pleasantries also work as people feel valued and appreciated.
- Ask for feedback and implement it. Don’t take it personally, take it constructively. Sometimes, people might refuse to provide feedback as they think it’s a waste of time but you can be the perfect example and use this feedback in positive ways. Offer some sort of incentives so that people feel encouraged. Check-in with your customers.
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Winning over hearts & minds
- Get the right equipment. Give them what they want and not a standard response. Work on the response rate and be approachable. How would you feel if someone behaves with you this way?
- Use positive language. Make a note of everything that happens. Create a database of your existing customers as customer retention is important, research markets to target more people. Acknowledge, analyse, focus and move. Do not hold grudges because these things happen in business.
- Know how to close a conversation. While you may nurture great relations with your regulars and can often be termed as pals, remember it becomes difficult to do business with friends. It’s funny that this is coming from me as I’m a talkative person, but know where to draw the line. Of course, you can go for coffees or dinners but keep in mind not to provoke the customers in any way and know what it would take your business to close the deal with them.
- Use technology. The world revolves around technology. Forget revolve, it works on technology.
- Have a great team. Now, if you’re a one-man army and are looking to cut down costs, have a great technical on front. Consider using automated helpdesks such as ZenDesk or FreshDesk, or perhaps hire contractors. They can work on a contract or as freelancers and you won’t need to put them on the payroll as they belong to the gig part of the economy.
You don’t need to follow all of these together though for the perfect solution, following through this detailed bit is highly recommended. However, you’re the boss and while we and the other sites on the internet can only offer advice, it’s up to you as to how you make it work.