How to improve your customer service…

A lot of companies I meet are under the illusion that they’re providing excellent customer service when they actually are not. A Customer Service Benchmark report revealed that while 80 percent of businesses it contacted believed they offered excellent customer service, only 8 percent of their customers agreed that that was true.

It goes without saying, no two companies are the same. However, successful companies do have a lot in common in terms of providing the best kind of service, founded on the following four strategies.

  1. Get to know your customers

The basis of providing excellent customer service is developing a close relationship with your customers. Knowing your customers gives you the opportunity to provide them with a personalised experience.

To know your customers, you may have to conduct surveys, relate with them via your social media presence, ask them questions, listen to them and seek to understand them.

  1. Fix your mistakes.

Customer service mistakes, like overpromising and under-delivering, can be costly mistakes. Nobody’s perfect, but at times when you make a mistake, it’s important to make amends as quickly as possible.

The aim is to maintain a high level of customer satisfaction at all times. Even when you’re not directly at fault, sometimes it’s good to step in to fix the problem just for the sake of ensuring that your customers are happy and your company’s reputation is protected.

  1. Be thoughtful.

People prefer to deal with companies that are more human. A company that shows care and genuine concern for its customers is powerful. Customer’s love feeling special and appreciate the effort companies put in to make them feel that way.

Thoughtful gestures like remembering a customer’s name, sending thank you notes along with the order or celebrating a customer’s birthday may seem simple or even insignificant, but they can endear your company to your client.

  1. Respond to inquiries quickly.

One of my biggest frustrations when dealing with customer service departments by phone is being put on hold. I am not alone. In fact, according to statistics provided on the Fonolo blog, 82 percent of customers in one survey said that how quickly a company resolves their problems dictates whether such a company provides good customer service or not. Consumers value the speed of delivery just as much as they value having their products or services in one piece.

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