6 Top Customer Service Tips for Small Businesses
Why Customer Service Matters
Customer service is how you support your customers before, during, and after they purchase your products or services. And a good customer service experience can be the difference between a one-time browser and a returning customer. One 2022 study found that 94% of customers are more likely to purchase again after having a positive customer service experience. But good customer service doesn't only bring customers back. It also makes customers more likely to promote your brand via word-of-mouth. This can attract new customers and enhance your small business's reputation.
On the flip side, a bad customer service experience can be a big problem for your business. According to a survey, 40% of American customers stopped doing business with companies with poor customer service. Here, discover Optimum Business’s top tips for creating exceptional customer service experiences for your small business.
Customer Service Tips
1. Hire the Right Team
Hiring the right people for the job is the first step toward providing great customer service. First impressions are key, and your customer service team is often the first point of contact for customers with a question or concern. So, they must encompass everything your brand stands for and possess the necessary skills and attitude to deliver good service.
There are a few attributes to look for when recruiting for customer service roles. These include being patient, empathetic, and having strong verbal and written communication skills. Another critical element to test for is the ability to solve problems. To assess their skills, you can ask how they would respond to hypothetical scenarios with difficult customers.
2. Train Your Team
While your team members may already have the right character and experience to work in customer service, they also need the business knowledge to back it. Providing training on your business is essential. This can include teaching the features, benefits, unique selling points, and common pitfalls of your offerings. Keep training current and allow your team to get hands-on experience with newly released products or services.
Equipping your team with expertise helps them to reliably and convincingly answer questions. Training can also enable your team to guide customers toward making the right purchase decisions for their needs. This type of strong customer service communication can help increase both sales and customer satisfaction.
3. Be Present on Socials
No two customers are the same, and they communicate through different channels. Whether it's over the phone, through social media, via email, or on a live chat, it's important that you're there for them. Responding quickly on these channels helps to keep your customers happy and engaged.
Training your team to ask direct and relevant questions is an excellent way to get straight into determining the issue. You can also work to develop a streamlined process for providing clear and concise answers.
Beyond being there for individual concerns, you can also post frequent helpful and relatable content on your website or social media channels. By having information for common questions and concerns readily available, you can mitigate potential customer service inquiries down the line.
4. Personalize the Customer Experience
Personalizing customer experiences can go a long way in building brand loyalty. In fact, in 2022, 62% of consumers stated they would lose their loyalty to a brand if it delivered an unpersonalized customer experience. This means focusing your efforts toward tailoring communications and interactions to the individual is essential.
You can use insights from customer data to personalize their communications. One example would be sending emails or offers for customer birthdays. This can help to create a bespoke customer experience, build customer loyalty, and boost your brand's reputation. Addressing customers by their preferred name is also a simple way to make any experience more memorable.
5. Communicate Promptly
A recent Statista report shows that 70% of US consumers expect same-day customer service responses. This indicates that customers expect speed and engagement from customer service teams. 56% of consumers also described slow response rates as the most common form of poor service.
Dealing with customer concerns promptly helps to ensure they don't escalate further. You can improve response rates by using AI chatbots or a Voice over Internet Software (VoIP). Hosted VoIP allows you to create and control a virtual switchboard from an app or desktop. It gives customers a recorded greeting and an automated list of options when they phone your business. This helps to immediately direct customers to the right place without a long wait, creating a positive customer experience in the process.
6. Have a Trusted Network and Service
Delivering exceptional customer service takes time and effort. But it can go a long way in building a solid brand reputation, developing a loyal customer base, and driving more sales. To deliver great customer service, you’ll need to ensure you have the right tools, such as fast Internet. Optimum Business can help you provide the customer service experience that your customers deserve. Check out Optimum Business's Phone and Wi-Fi options to stay connected with your customers around the clock.