A few weeks ago, we asked a bunch of consultants and marketers from lots of different industries to weigh in on the most useful advice they could think to give a small business. (You can check that out here.) We’re back today with a few more gleaming nuggets of customer service gold, just for you. But first, a few statistics just to put things in perspective: Customer service can make or break your business.
- U.S companies lose more than $62 billion annually due to poor customer service—New Voice Media
- 51% of customers will abandon a business after one negative experience—New Voice Media
- 69% of consumers say they’ve spent more money to do business with a company that delivers great service—American Express
- Lack of employee knowledge and training is the #1 obstacle keeping companies from achieving their customer experience goals—hotjar
Empower your employees
Happier employees mean happier clients. Empower them with the authority and the tools to improve their client experience and watch employee (and client) engagement soar.
Lori Lite, Actualize Consulting
Put your assumptions to the test
Test anything that you may be assuming as to its accuracy. Assumptions can narrow our perspective. Test each and every assumption to gain clarity and create a conversation that is open to all possibilities.
Kathy Taberner, Institute of Curiosity
Provide an easy way for customers or clients to give feedback: we welcome client feedback with open arms. No matter what your business is, there are always ways to communicate.
Jenna Erickson, Codal
Establish expectations early
Provide a Welcome Packet. This should detail your contact info, method of communication and best hours to be contacted and timelines discussed. Expectations of both parties should be clearly outlined.
Be a secret shopper from time to time. See how an interaction with sales or customer service plays out. See what happens when you push back a little in the process and how your team responds.
Suzanne Brown, Mompowerment
When in doubt, overcommunicate. Especially at the beginning, when you’re still building the relationship.
Paige Arnof-Fenn, Mavens & Moguls
Play in the customer’s court
Let your customer choose their preferred communication method. You may infuriate a customer by calling them back when they emailed you first. Keep your replies channel-specific.
Terese Kerrigan, FreightCenter
Always be accessible
If your customers face difficulties in contacting you, it’ll be unquestionably bad for your reputation. You must provide channels through which your customers can easily and instantly contact your customer service desk.
Andrei Vasilescu, Don’tPayFull