3 Essential Points for Great Customer Service
This article was originally posted on 06/03/2018 and last updated on 14/08/2019.
As we talked about it in previous articles, customer satisfaction should be the main objective of a company. And this can be achieved through various practices in your business. But one of the best tools you have at your disposal will be your customer service.
Consumers are becoming increasingly demanding. They expect easier ways in navigating a website, less delivery time for their orders, more payment options on the purchases, and greater ease in returning their orders, among other aspects.
And even though to you it might seem like everything is going well, there will always be the possibility that your client does not think the same. And that’s where an excellent customer service must come into play in your eCommerce.
What is Customer Service?
This service can be defined as the assistance of a company to its customers and potential customers, before, during or after a purchase. There are three essential aspects to consider in this process: customization, speed and proactivity.
Personalization is one of the keys for the consumer to have a good experience with your customer service, as consumers want an experience that is totally relevant to them.
That is why it is important that you know your customers well and collect as much information as possible about them in all the interactions that your online store has, either through the purchase itself, or when a direct communication happens.
From there, you can track record of that client’s behaviour, and use it in future in case there is more contact. You will find it very useful to extend the business relationship with that customer. Look at it from a perspective towards the future. A satisfied customer can become a customer for life.
Here are 4 examples on how to customize your service with customers to improve that relationship.
We also suggest that you use a cloud system that allows you to add all the information about the client in real time, and thus allows any member of your team or online store to have easy access to the same data. In this way, you don’t need to spend extra time in passing the same information to different people and having to notify each team member of updates about it.
One of the characteristics that customers appreciate the most in customer service is the speed of response of the company. Of course, this speed will depend on the channel through which customers contact your store.
For example, on Twitter 53% of consumers expect a response in less than an hour, while 41% would like to have a response in less than six hours by email.
Therefore, check your communication channels frequently to ensure that you answer as quickly as possible and that you allow your customers effective and competent communication.
Regarding this point, we want to clarify that speed should not imply any brevity in any way. By this we mean that the time you make your client wait for an answer should be short. Respond as quickly as possible, BUT once you have responded to that first contact, dedicate all the necessary time to the problem or question that your client has. The last thing you want to convey is a feeling of impatience to finish. Don’t make your customers think that you want to take them out of the way as soon as possible.
If you want to know what steps you can take to improve communication with your customers, here is a very interesting article.
Do not contact your customers only when there is a problem. Try to maintain a constant relationship or active communication with them, without overwhelming them of course.
Statistic shows that for every customer that submits a complaint, there are more 26 unsatisfied consumers. That is why it’s important to make sure they are satisfied with your product in advance. A good idea might be to send them an email during the purchase process, as well as before they receive their order so that they are aware that you care about their expectation. It is also a way to show that they can count on you for anything they need.
Let them know that this relationship between both of you goes far beyond the mere purchase of your products. Show them that you would love to know their opinion not only about the product but about the attention received, the delivery process, etc. For example, you can email them satisfaction surveys periodically. In that sense, they see that you still care about them and that you want to be informed.
In addition to being proactive with your customers, we also recommend you to be proactive in the communication your company provide for the public. The corporate image that your company creates on social networks is very important. If you are interested in knowing a little more about the proactivity, check this article.
The importance of these three points
When you are sure that your customer service has these three qualities, then you will begin to see its relevance and how they influence other three important factors of your eCommerce: image of the company, customer retention and, consequently, sales of the company.
According to a GrooveHQ study, a satisfied customer will talk to 9 people about their experience. However, a dissatisfied client will talk to 16 people.
With the growth of digital platforms, it is much easier to reach a greater number of people. And the truth is that consumers get informed more and more before placing any order: 63% read negative reviews on social media before buying something. That is why it is necessary to ensure that your customers have a great experience as well as perceive good image of your company.
A good way to minimize criticism online and to build trust with consumers? You’re thinking the same as us, right? Exactly! A great quality customer service.
To explain this point, let’s give an example with physical stores.
Hypermarket chains have a great weight in the purchases of the Spanish population, for example, but there are still many people who prefer to buy in small neighbourhood stores. Why they prefer that if they can obtain the majority of the products in large areas and sometimes for a lower price?
Well, some of the most important reasons are the proximity and convenience of this type of street shops, but another relevant issue is the attention one receives. There is nothing like going to a place where they know our face, our name and our preferences. It makes us feel special.
Well, the same can (and should) happen in the online world.
According to a RightNow study, 73% of consumers admit that good customer service can make them fall in love with a brand and 25% of consumers are willing to pay more for good service. And if the customer has a good experience, the probability of buying again in your online store is 52%. This is very important, because if, on the contrary, the experience is negative, 58% will not return.
Good customer service, in addition to increasing the likelihood of returning customers, can also bring an increase in the frequency of purchases.
These two facts are interconnected, since the probability of selling to a previous customer is 60% to 70%, while the probability of selling to a new customer is 5% to 20%.
According to the same study by GrooveHQ we mentioned before, a client who experiences excellent customer service and attention will, as a rule, spend 140% more on your eCommerce compared to someone dissatisfied.
If until now you did not consider that the customer service in your eCommerce was something so necessary or important, perhaps it is time to change this mentality. Or maybe, do you need more reasons to value and pay attention to quality customer service?
If that’s the case, here it goes: not only can it help you create more loyalty among your customers towards your brand, but it will improve your company image for future customers who may be interested, plus potentially increase the sales of your online store.
Therefore, remember to create communication channels with your customers that are effective, adapted to their needs and in which they feel they can express themselves freely. Make clear that your business is willing to listen to all their comments, good and bad, to keep on growing and improving. And of course, show them that you care.