6 Ways to Create an Exceptional Customer Service Experience (and 5 Mistakes to Avoid)

With companies looking to make their client interactions more worthwhile and fortifying customer relationships, customer service has become the backbone of successful companies. Customer Service means the support a company provides to its customers not just after a sale is done but throughout the entire buying journey. A strong customer service team ensures that their customers have an easy and enjoyable experience when buying a product or service from them. With over 90% of Americans deciding whether or not to do business with a company based on customer service, a customer service experience any less than exceptional can cost you profits. 

A customer service that goes above and beyond in supporting their customer base can foster customer loyalty, skyrocket customer retention, and bring more business through word of mouth. In this blog, we’ll discuss some ways to create an exceptional customer service experience so to not just attract new customers but to also fuel repeat customers and referrals.

1. Know your product

One of the key ways to create an exceptional customer service experience is by ensuring your agents know the products and services well. Without a deep understanding of the product, your agents can not accurately and persuasively convince customers how it will add value to their processes and business needs. 

Great customer service representatives know how to turn product features into benefits. Some of the important things to know about a product are its purpose, how it works, how it is maintained and serviced, its price, how it can be complemented by other products, and how it fares when compared to the competition. 

2. Enable customers with an omnichannel approach to customer service

Leveraging technology for your business has never been more important. Growing expectations demand improved innovations across complete customer journeys. Allowing customers to reach you through multiple channels not only helps them get to you faster and more efficiently but also encourages them to practice self-service. 

Companies nowadays are successfully using Help Desks, Chatbots, Knowledge Base, and FAQs to assist customers with their needs. Chatbots, for example, are revolutionizing customer support each day with AI-powered communication. Through round-the-clock uninterrupted service and exponential reduction in resolution times, customers are loving the support.  

3. Practice proactive support instead of reactive support

The support you provide to your customers can really set you apart from your competitors. Customer support approaches can broadly be segregated into – proactive and reactive services. Reactive customer support is one where a customer reaches out to the support team to solve issues. And proactive support is one where the companies anticipate customer needs and possible issues. 

Reactive customer support usually involves a customer reaching out using a contact form, telephone number, or email address and waiting for a response from the customer representative. Proactive support involves companies thoughtfully putting out knowledge base articles, providing easy access to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), and instructional videos to promote self-service. 

4. Acknowledge your customer’s issues faster

As the competition soars, so does the customer’s impatience. Time is of the essence. According to Statista, about 12% of Americans call “lack of speed” their biggest frustration. 

To create a reputation for excellent customer service, companies must aim for prompt and efficient response times. Be it quicker responses or faster resolutions, customers appreciate organizations that value the customer’s time. One of the ways to do so is by automating your customer service using a Chatbot. Chatbots have time and again proven to speed up issue resolution, especially when it comes to time-sensitive matters. Read more about how chatbots can provide not just speedy but also accurate service. 

5. Enable self-service

As customer service is turning towards a proactive approach, enabling self-service for consumers has proved favorable. In today’s competitive market, a company’s success can largely be measured by happy customers. Since time is a valuable resource for both parties, self-service has gained a lot of traction in the customer-centric world.

But what is self-service? Self Service is the practice of helping customers to help themselves with quality FAQs, knowledge base articles. This not only drastically reduces long wait times and confusion for customers but also lightens customer representatives’ tier-1 workload. 

6. Be empathetic towards your customers

Putting yourself in your customer’s shoes can help you relate to your customers better. They want to feel acknowledged and heard. To deliver exceptional customer service, support agents must practice empathy in every interaction, paired with excellent problem-solving. 

And even if you might not solve their issues at that very moment, having a meaningful interaction with them and connecting with them can be an added advantage. Even during a difficult situation or a disagreement with a customer, agents can put on a hat of compassion and provide respite to angry customers. As increased compassion has a direct correlation with improved customer satisfaction, companies must take measures to embed empathy into their work culture – especially the customer-facing roles. 

Now that we know some crucial ways your service reps can go the extra mile to support your target audience, let us look at some common mistakes to avoid as you improve the customer experience in your organization. 

1. Not being transparent with your customers

One of the biggest mistakes a business can make is not be straightforward with their customers. When implementing transparency practices, companies are often scared to be fully honest. Giving the audience access to information that doesn’t portray businesses in the best possible light can put even the bravest ones out of their comfort zone. 

But the trust that you build with your customers is invaluable. Building loyalty from day one has proven that clients will stick with you even during setbacks. Thanks to the proliferation of social media and review sites, customer experiences can be widely disseminated and quickly shared. Let’s track issues better, resolve them faster, and aim to build loyal customers. 

2. Not be easily accessible

If your customer support team is not easily approachable, it can turn your customer base hostile real quick. One of the most common grievances of customers is getting in touch with support. Enter omnichannel customer service. 

Omni-channel customer service allows seamless customer experience across all channels where your customers exist. Reports say that having an omnichannel customer service strategy can help businesses increase their revenue by over 9.5%  compared to 3.4% without one. For instance, if you have an online eCommerce store, you might want to cover email support, phone call, real-time live agent support, online chatbot support, and a self-service platform. This ensures that no matter the channel, your customers’ needs, and issues are acknowledged and resolved. 

3. Not maintain accurate customer data

Data is growing at an astounding rate. Even when it seems difficult to maintain at this pace, businesses can not take data for granted. Providing wrong or ambiguous data is a big no. Bad data can cost an average company more than $3 million per year. 

Misleading information from customer inputs and outdated information can prove disastrous to your business. To combat this, companies must invest in a powerful database for this information. Using a tool like HappyFox Help Desk not only facilitates accurate data management but also security. Our customers love a platform to track all customer interactions, self-service knowledge base, and omnichannel support. 

4. Ignoring the power of analytics to derive insights 

As discussed above, maintaining data and customer information over notepads and excel sheets can get cumbersome very quickly. That’s why successful companies are leveraging technology and powerful metrics to streamline their business processes and information. 

Keeping technology at the forefront can help you be omnipresent, track customer feedback better, and provide proactive support than just reactive. With a tool like HappyFox Business Intelligence, you can better understand your customers and tailor their interactions. Using vivid and easy-to-understand dashboards and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) can help customer service executives better control business processes and have data-backed insights to customize their products and services. 

5. Forgetting about nurturing employees

Successful companies know the secret to staying ahead of the competition – nurturing their rising stars. Being the face of customer service agents, it is important to provide them with the right information, training, and support. 

Supporting your team members like you’d support your customers can take your company to new heights. This can take many forms such as providing flexible hours, the right infrastructure, individual incentives, or empowering your employees with self-service to increase employee engagement. After all, happy employees mean happy customers. 

Conclusion

To remain competitive, companies around the world are empowering their customers. And with this, customer expectations are also exponentially increasing too. It is enough to just have good customer service. Ensure your customer service teams’ focus on going above and beyond is backed with the right tools and strategies. Learn more about how HappyFox has helped clients globally to provide faster, better, and exceptional service to their customers.