10 hacks for an outstanding customer service

Investing in offering excellent customer service means meeting and surpassing customers' expectations. Interacting and engaging with your clients in a friendly and helpful way, shows them how important they are to your business.

Ilaria Carboni, Head of Marketing at Oct8ne, describes the 10 main points that have to be taken into account, when implementing a successful customer service strategy.

Offering outstanding customer service also means looking after your online reputation. In fact, 23% of consumers used to share their customer service experience on social media, mostly on Facebook and Instagram. One of the biggest mistakes a company can make in the online world is thinking that having a good reputation at their brick and mortar store is enough to build trust among their customers.

The reality is that e-notoriety of a brand can be compromised and ruined very quickly - as mentioned by Sprout Social, 55% of consumers complain on social media to see results, 70% of purchasing experiences are based on how the customer feels they are being treated.

This point makes it quite clear that customer service is probably the major key to success, considering that 55% of customers would pay extra to receive better service. If you wish to build a successful business, it is important to keep in mind that satisfied customers lead to more revenue and growth since keeping a loyal customer is less expensive than acquiring a new one. In fact, research shows that when a business is reliable and provides good customer service its customers have trust in the brand, and satisfied customers are likely to make new purchases.

That said, here are ten main points that have to be taken into account, when implementing a successful customer service strategy:

  1. Make sure your customers can easily get in touch - Online customers are always more demanding, so offering help in real time and through different channels is a key point in engaging and building trust.

  2. Customer Service should be personalized - Let's be honest, none of us likes to be treated like a number. Therefore, offering personalized service will make the customer feel understood and will increase the chance of closing a deal or possibly turning a bad purchase experience into a positive one.

  3. Break the barrier of being online - lots of people are skeptical about online purchases, because they can't touch the product, which results in a lack of confidence when finalizing the purchase. Using a livechat where you can show images and videos of your products through visual support directly from the shop's catalog will break this barrier and boost your sales because the shopping experience will be much more similar to one of an offline store.

  4. Do not keep the customer waiting - Among a variety of contact channels, we prefer the ones that allow the customer to have a real-time conversation. This way you'll make sure that all those compulsive buyers don't jump to another online store because they don't receive an answer to their questions.

  5. Anticipate customer needs - spot the possible exit points on your webpage and make sure you set the right strategies to engage with your customers before they leave. If you use a chat, a good trick is to set triggers that will open the chat and offer help to the customer at the right time.

  6. Make time for the customer - dedicate the necessary time to assist the customer and make sure when the conversation ends, everything is clear and you have done everything to assist them.

  7. Speak the language of your customers (language, empathy, friendliness) - having the possibility to talk to someone who speaks your language breeds confidence, so where possible, choose native speakers to attend your customers or opt for services that give you a real-time translation, so your agent can easily communicate with your customers. Don't forget to be empathetic with your clients, always being polite and friendly will make the customer feel understood, despite how angry/frustrated they might be. And, if you are attending them on the phone, don't forget to smile. It might seem cheesy, but it's been proven that if you have a smile on your face, the tone of your voice changes, and a smile puts the caller at ease.

  8. Train your staff - your agents need to have an in-depth knowledge of your product or service and be confident about what they're selling. This builds the customer's trust, and they will be more likely to buy your product.

  9. Make use of automation - implementing a no code conversational chatbot that can answer all the FAQs and guide customers toward the product/solution they are looking for, allows you to attend clients 24/7 and filter valuable vs non-valuable conversations, so your agents can dedicate more time to conversations that really need personalized attention.

  10. Manage customer expectations - be always clear with customers about policies and product features. There's nothing more frustrating than receiving something that isn't what you expected or in a timeframe that doesn't meet customer needs.