It’s a tough old world out there and starting a business or simply staying in business is getting more and more difficult every day. There is a lot of competition and businesses are having a hard time trying to differentiate themselves from the competition. There is, however, one thing which will keep your customers coming back again and again – a valuable customer experience. The customer experience you provide begins and ends with spectacular customer service.
What Is Customer Service?
It’s being there for your customer from the moment they meet you, whether it is online, on the phone or they walk through the front door of your establishment. It’s being there to prevent any potential problems and it’s being there to resolve any issues that come up. Customer service is about being proactive and engaging your current customers so they always feel valuable and appreciated.
For many businesses, and you’re sure to have had this experience as a customer, customer service is an afterthought. It’s when the problem solvers step in and attempt to appease you. While this is certainly part of customer service if this is your approach you’re going to spend a whole lot of time solving problems.
Spectacular customer service means being in communication with your customers to make sure they’re happy, to find out what they need and want and to meet those needs with innovative products and services.
How To Provide Spectacular Customer Service
Be transparent and available 24/7. This doesn’t mean you have to answer the phone at all hours but it does mean providing all the information possible for your customers to have easy access to. A FAQ page and a customer service form on your website can fill in the off hours and you can hire a customer service company to answer phones, address problems, and even have a presence on your website in a pop up customer service chat screen.I actually had a great experience with this type of service the other day – I had a problem with my website and could not load a file I needed to the server – I hadn’t used this sort of chat service before and was pleasantly surprised at the speed of response – literaly 30 seconds – and at how helpful and efficient the person at the other end was.
However as mentioned earlier, customer service is about more than answering questions and solving problems. It’s about creating strategies to solve problems before they occur, to embrace your customers’ needs and wants before they know what they are and solve them.
This can be accomplished with regular communication, surveys and polls, special offers for your loyal customers only and regular tracking and analytics. Data is a valuable asset to providing an ideal customer experience. Think about your last shopping experience at your favorite store. Chances are your satisfaction with the outing was influenced by the sales representatives you encountered but also by the layout of the store – how easy it was to find things – and how easy it was to check out. Online or off these little experiences add up to a spectacular customer service experience.
The happier and more satisfied your customers are the more they’ll come back and the more they’ll talk about you to your friends. It means a bigger and better business and more profits. Focus on your customer experience and you’ll be building the kind of success which lasts.
I’ll be featuring a series of posts and articles on the topic of “Customer Experience” over the next few months as I really believe it can be a key factor in outshining the competition. Stay tuned…..