Of course, there’s always going to be a few customer service needs that will endure despite the many changes. Politeness and an in-depth knowledge are staples and will always be needed. But there are plenty of new requirements in recent years.
Let’s take a closer look at how you can meet the customer service needs of today’s consumer.
The Need For Speed
The need for a quick answer has always been essential in customer service but now it’s even more important than ever. Whether it’s online or in person, if a customer can’t get an answer quickly they’re unlikely to be a loyal customer and are more likely spread negative comments about your business.
If you work in retail this means you could lose a sale and if you’re in the support industry, it will likely mean a customer won’t listen to you. Customer service crosses a huge range of industries and the more often you’re able to give quick and speedy responses, the better advantage you have over your competition. This can be achieved by having the best customer support system in place that makes sure your customers get fast and speedy support.
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There’s a lot of talk about the importance of digital in today’s customer service experience and for good reason. The digital platform is very important. However, it doesn’t matter the kind of product or service you provide, it’s very likely that a lot of your customers will contact you digitally.
This doesn’t mean that traditional human interaction isn’t important. In fact, many customers have stated that they will try to seek out a human to deal with when shopping… even online or using a product or a facility like a bank.
So, it’s essential that anyone working in customer service is able to provide a personalised experience. What is a personalised experience you ask? It means that the interaction should be more human and less scripted or robotic. You can engage in a little small talk or keep it short and just say a simple hello and goodbye.
With a personalised approach, customers will be more willing to come back and use your products or services again.
A Variety of Options
The “one size fits all approach” isn’t going to work in today’s customer service climate. Customers now expect to have a range of options open to them in all areas… this includes a range of payment options and contact methods.
A business or service without an online presence isn’t going to last long in this social media obsessed – instant gratification world. But traditional contact methods like a phone number are still very popular. So, if you want to ensure you meet the needs of today’s customers make sure you provide a wide range of contact options for them.
Front Line Staff Should Be Able To Handle Anything
“I’ll go and check with the manager” might be a famous phrase when it comes to customer service, but it’s not really a phrase that many customers are going to expect to hear anymore. Of course, there’s still the odd exception. Nowadays, when a customer talks to a staff member, they expect to be helped with everything.
This means it’s more important than ever that staff are knowledgeable and have an in-depth understanding of things they could be asked. Another point to keep in mind is that customers aren’t going to jump through hoops to get the information they need. They’ll expect front-line staff to be able to handle most of their requirements. This makes it imperative that your front-line staff are trained to handle any situation.
Honesty and Openness
Businesses, particularly bigger businesses, have been hit by many scandals in recent years and as a result, there is great distrust between the average consumer and business. That means the need for honesty and openness between businesses and their customers is so much more important.
So, say goodbye to hidden fees and an overly scripted service, customers want to feel like they’re being treated and talked to by a real person. That’s why personalisation is of key importance. But, there is more to it than that. Consumers today will expect any business they deal with to be open and honest with them at all times.
Remember, customers hate feeling like they’ve been tricked or misled so it’s very important to be open and honest with them. If they have a complaint or an opinion, actively listen to what they have to say and try your best to build a rapport with them.
Customer Service Is Always Changing
Customer service is very different now and it’s always changing. So, if you want to provide the best customer service possible, it’s important to always look at ways to improve. Keep thinking about what you would expect if you were in the customer’s shoes and try to implement that into your service.
Feel free to share your opinion on this blog topic! If you want to contribute your ideas, leave them in your comments below. If you know of anyone that can use the information in this blog, do share it on social media. Thanks for your help and I look forward to reading your comments and suggestions!