How can you get your customer service right?
The race to delight the customers has become so ingrained, that most businesses are taking resort to immoral ways of doing it. According to a report published in the Harvard Business Review, business managers are so hell bent on delighting their customers, that examining the nature of techniques has taken a backseat.
Impressing customers at all cost – has become the ruling mantra.
In the words of Błażej Szperliński, ‘’Delighting the customers has given rise to a set of bold statements of customer service -
· WE are available 24/7
· WE are flexible
· WE hold in depth expertise
· WE are agile and responsive and understand your concerns
· WE WOW our customers always
While companies have left no stone unturned in coming up with the most innovative declarations; in most instances all words and no actions has been the scenario. Put simply, in the lieu of promoting quality service to their present/potential customers, companies have gone too far (more than what they can actually deliver).’’
Consequently, failed customer expectations and poor customer service has come to the forefront.
What experts suggest?
Remain relevant. Proclaim high-end promises only when you can deliver. If you say your customer service is 24/7 available, make sure it is. If you say you can help get things done, do it. Remember the last thing customers want to hear is that you cannot deliver because of so and so…..reason.
Substantiating this point further, Harvard Business Review has stated – The inclination to punish bad service is higher than the impulse to reward a delightful one. Multiple surveys have been conducted that shows
Customer loyalty gets influenced by –
How well a company delivers on its basic, plain-vanilla promises?
Customer churn is likely to get caused by
False customer service claims
This is precisely why the number of customers patronizing a company because of its over-the-top service is less than the number of customers cutting from companies because of terrible service.
A customer is more likely to revenge an airline that has lost his bag than return to a hotel that has attentive staff.
Focus on delivering the basics
As per the research carried out by the Customer Contact Council (part of the Corporate Executive Board), over more than 75,000 customers along with hundreds of customer service leaders,
Customer service strategy should be -
To minimize the effort of the customers to get their problems solved i.e. after-sales support should be fast and effective.
In the words of Matthew Dixon, Karen Freeman, and Nicholas Toman, ‘’Making tall customer service claims that are rarely in line to the day-to-day reality will do irreparable damage to a business. Businesses should first get the basics right, before setting the eye on creating a dazzling experience. ‘’
What makes up for a basic but satisfying customer service?
As aforementioned, evidence shows that customers do not tolerate the rushed and inconvenient service. They are looking for a satisfying experience and businesses that provide it win their loyalty.
In the words of Dave Dougherty, ‘’When customers contact companies for service, they only care about two things:
· Knowledge of the frontline employee
· Issue resolve on the first call.
Source: Harvard Business Review
Yet, most customer care managers do not prioritize these two aspects. This could be because in most instances, businesses are not aware about the right area to concentrate upon. Hence, traditionally customer service quality gets measured on
· Time on hold
· Minutes per call.
Inevitably, these parameters force the customer agents to rush through the calls, thereby creating a dissatisfying experience for the customers.’’
He recommends measuring
· Percentage of problems resolved within the first contact
· Reason behind the problems that aren’t resolved in one call.
Further, investing in high-end cloud CRM software plays an integral role in keeping the first contact resolution rates high. With all crucial information consolidated in one central platform, it is easy for the customer agents to instantly respond to the customer query.
‘’Hourly response rates is amplified through Cloud CRM software. For those who think otherwise, can take a look at all the major (customer-service renowned) firms - feature-enriched cloud CRM solution is the common factor. Not only CRM ensures fast initial response rates, but high-quality interactions between customers and frontline employees too.’’
Businesses who do not implement this tactic experience loss through wasted investments and high customer attrition. Disgruntled customers leave them without the slightest warning. Even when companies rebuild themselves, they cannot choose to ignore the high attrition rate that represents lost opportunities in terms of customer revenue and brand promotion. Conversely, businesses who act on these insights are bound to benefit in multiple ways - improved customer service, reduced customer service expenditure, and low customer churn.
Patricia is a full time CRM consultant at ConvergeHub and part-time blogger. She has earned herself quite a fame as a specialist and market expert in CRM software. In the last five year she has worked with various companies as CRM consultant to help them move their businesses to cloud. Her expertise lies in offering cloud CRM consultation, CRM customization and integration solutions to small enterprises. For last one she is engaged in building ConvergeHub, cloud-based CRM solution for SMBs, as a consultant.Follow her at Twitter: @jones_converge