While customer service is one of the most intense and demanding fields in almost all organizations, it is the new companies that give it its fearsome air. When you are starting with customer service and it is one of the many hats you wear, it can be a bit difficult to put that extra effort and provide exceptional support with every interaction.
Most people make the mistake of forgetting that it takes more than a support software to brighten their customers; What you need is the right people and you do it the right way. The Internet is full of literature on the first subject, but the second not so much.
Here is a list of tips that no one will ever say when you are starting with customer service:
It is not about the channels in your service, but the service on your channels
The road to hell is paved with good intentions. Everyone wants exceptional customer service on all existing support channels – the real question is whether it is feasible to do so.
So before you enthusiastically declare that you are available on all social media networks and start creating a MySpace page, take a deep breath, and deliberate about your choice of channels.
What you really need to consider is:
Do you have enough people for all the staff on these channels to be useful to your customers? For example, if you are going to have phone support for about an hour each day, it is not worth it.
Is this a channel that your customers frequent? Sure, Pinterest is a good addition to your wallet, but if your customers are not into it, it does not make sense to try.
Thus, based on the roadmap towards the future, it is best to find out what channels are actually feasible to support. If you seem to find a lot of complicated features in front of you, a knowledge base backed by a real-time channel is advisable. Poll your customers to know what channels they prefer.
Compare the two lists. If the lists are in tune, excellent. You are on the right path.
If your first choice can be undone (as if you do not have the staff for the 24/7 live chat channel), you should tell them why. They will appreciate your honesty and are not going to waste your time trying to get in touch with you on channels that do not have the attention span.
Once you have made your choices, do not forget to advertise what channels are available so that your customers know where to send your call for help.
Expectations, both internal and external, can make or break your support
Most of the famous customer care stories are born because companies can not make sure that everyone is on the same page. When a customer sees that you are on Twitter, they will expect you to be active 24/7 unless otherwise specified. It does not matter if it’s on the other side of the world; If you do not specify your working hours clearly, they will assume that you are active whenever they are and will be very disappointed if they do not receive a response right away.
So, take a sheet from Zapier’s book and set clear expectations.
Zapier, set the right expectations as a boss.
It also advises us to specify your hours for each channel on the home page or ‘Contact’ page so that customers can find out which channel will be best for getting their answers as soon as possible.
It is also important to set the right expectations internally. Of course, your customers would love a permanent attendance on all their channels, but that’s no reason to go back to their crazy agents trying to meet those demanding demands.
Remember, it’s about the service on your channels, not the channels on your service. You do not want to overload your agents and reduce the quality of your service in an effort to meet exaggerated expectations.
You should take stock of your team’s resources and capabilities, and set internal expectations for response time before setting external expectations. Once you begin, you can adjust your resource allocation processes, and expectations as you progress to give in the right level.
The customization can go further, but it is self-service what most customers want.
Automate or customize, that’s the real question.
Over the years, we have had many clients who tell us that they prefer not to have a knowledge base on hand because they want to have conversations with all their clients, not just those who could not find answers on their portal. This, they insist, will not only help you build a more intuitive product but also assures them that they are always in harmony with their customers.
There is something to be said about truly personalized customer service, where every interaction is with a real living human being. But if only 45% of the supporting interactions involve a human intermediary, that’s a very strong indication that this self-service train is here to stay.
As beneficial as direct interaction can be for you, customer service is about catering to the preferences of the customers.
If customers want self-service (and it seems they do) then it is better to have a knowledge base.
Customers do not expect steaks at the airport, they just want to be treated like people all the time.
Since the advent of social networking, companies have been trying to outdo each other with great love statements in an effort to win PR points. Steaks at airports, extravagant Christmas presents and a taco truck … the list simply continues. And that’s good! Your customers deserve all the love you give them. However, they would prefer that their affection be in a more consistent way.
Before you try to reach the highest levels, establish a baseline of love for the client. As Peter Shankman said, “I do not need you to try to surprise me, I just want you to smile at me, I want to get a” Hello! “, A” Welcome to our airline. “Something that tells me that I exist in your eyes. Everything you need to propel the company to the stratosphere. ”
Bonus: Maintain all support equipment for as long as possible.
In most new businesses, customer support is everyone’s job, which is great because it ensures that everyone is on the same page about the concerns of customers. However, as teams grow and a dedicated support team is formed, companies forget the importance of the whole company being in support.
So, if you have to beg, borrow, lie and steal to get your teammates to stay in the support, do so, for as long as possible. This includes everyone from the CEO to the humble interns. You would not believe how beneficial it can be.
In that regard, we also recommend discussing a tone guide thoroughly as soon as possible. Not everyone is going to be a prodigy of support so this will be of great use to them.
As is the case with most camps, there will be several unwritten commandments that are learned only at work. Learning is a continuous process and we are still in the curve. What are some unwritten rules about support that you think are important?