Regardless of your market niche or area of operation, serving well can make all the difference between closing more deals or closing your company – after all, poor service often generates detrimental customers. Therefore, it is important to invest in the relationship between you and your consumers.
So that you can leverage your results, we have brought 40 customer service tips that will help you understand everything about how to relate well with customers and find out why this pillar for your business success deserves all the attention.
We highly recommend that you check out all the tips, as we cover everything from customer relationship factors to technologies, metrics and solutions that can boost your results!
Tip: Websites Are Us can help you convert visitors into customers, find out how!
1. Study your audience
The first step – curiously overlooked by some entrepreneurs – is to study your target audience. It is not enough to simply know your product or service in depth, it is necessary to know who you are selling to.
However, it is by knowing your niche market and the products offered that you can view your customer’s profile, taking into account aspects such as:
- Age group;
- Demographic data;
Among other relevant data according to your business. Of course, there are extremely comprehensive products that are not targeted at a specific group of consumers, such as smartphones, for example.
2. Understand the main pains and challenges of customers
Still in the study of your target audience, it is important to understand what are the main challenges that your customer may be going through and to identify how your products or services can solve it.
As presented in the famous book of Neil Rackham, “Achieving Sales Excellence – SPIN Selling”:
First talk about its benefits and differentials so that the consumer realizes the added value of purchasing a product or service that will solve their problems. So, just after that, talk about price.
3. Create your persona
Being one of the most important customer service tips, after studying your target audience, be sure to also invest in defining your business persona.
Especially for companies that work with a well-defined mix of products or services, that is, they are not multi-category businesses, the persona can help you direct your efforts more efficiently.
The persona represents the profile of the ideal consumer, to learn how to define it, be sure to check out our complete guide.
4. Speak the language of your customers
From the creation of the persona, you will be able to identify the best way to interact and engage consumers during a service session.
Develop your company’s ideal language according to your niche so that you can bring customers closer to your brand.
Consider whether or not to use slang, be extremely formal or if you can be a little more informal, and train your staff to maintain a consistent standard.
5. Be available where your customers are
By perfectly understanding the profile of your customers, you will be able to identify which are the most effective points of contact to engage them, taking into account both the digital and physical environment.
From this, it is important to structure your service ecosystem in a way that offers channels according to your persona.
To exemplify, consider whether there are more possibilities for customers to chat with you by email or via social networks – and on which social network?
6. Be cordial and friendly
It may seem obvious, but this is one of the most important customer service tips for businesses in every niche.
Regardless of the language of your company, always be cordial and friendly, respect the consumer, as well as their opinions, preferences, pains and other characteristics.
It is true that the customer is not always right, but knowing how to deal with negative situations in a professional manner can be the difference between winning back frustrated customers or generating more detractors for your brand.
7. Know how to listen
This is another extremely important factor so that it has quality and can transform service into a competitive differential in your business.
No consumer likes to repeat their doubts or problems, just as they don’t like receiving solutions to just the first question sent in an email, while the other three questions are ignored, for example.
Therefore, your service team must be trained to listen and present answers and complete solutions, which incorporate the needs and specificities of each situation presented by consumers.
8. Be proactive
Being proactive means not waiting for the customer to take the first step towards your customer service team.
The most classic example of proactive service that we have today are the approaches of representatives in physical stores that usually involve opening phrases like “Welcome, can I help you?”
But of course, today we can no longer talk about customer service without considering the digital market – where doing this type of approach can be more challenging, after all, it is not always possible to see the customer entering your store.
Fortunately, there are already solutions that offer features such as proactive invitations, which circumvent this situation and allow your team to start conversations with online visitors in the same way as it does in retail.
7. Offer a personalized experience
Among the customer service tips, this is one that should serve as the core for your efforts.
Serving well means generating good experiences, that is, making customers feel happy and genuinely satisfied with the service provided.
Its customers do not want to be treated as “just one more” in their business – on the contrary, more and more modern consumers are looking for exclusivity not only in the products or services offered, but also in service.
9. Have empathy
Empathy is the biggest differential of humanized service and automated service, based on technologies such as chatbots or IVRs (Audible Response Unit) frequently used on the phone.
Empathy means establishing a human connection between your brand and the consumer, so that you can really understand the different situations presented and be able to personalize the communication as needed.
A frustrated consumer should not be treated in the same way as a satisfied and loyal customer, for example.
10. Solve problems
This tip may also be obvious, but it is very likely that you, as a consumer, have already needed answers or solutions from some brand and the answer obtained has not solved the problem.
To exemplify: how many times have you heard the story of turning the modem off and on again to fix internet problems?
It is true that this can work in many cases, but when it is not enough, your team must be ready to take action until the problem is corrected.
11. Don’t follow the script to the letter
Having a service script is important, as it serves as a basis to help your operators and representatives understand what to do in each type of likely situation.
However, it is important to give your team autonomy so that they can, when necessary and in order to resume a negotiation or close a sale, leave the script and present different and exclusive solutions.
This type of strategy is especially valid to retain consumers who are already loyal to your brand. After all, as we mentioned in the previous content, investing in customer loyalty has a big impact on your results.
13. Be quick when answering
How many times have you or someone you know been frustrated by not being able to contact a brand to get answers or solutions within an acceptable period of time?
Response time is one of the most important metrics for customer service, regardless of whether it happens over the phone, email, online chat, among other channels.
So make sure you optimize your processes so that you can always return contact or answer a call as soon as possible – before customers give up talking to your company.
Check out our next customer service tips to learn how to do it using technology to your advantage.
14. Invest in an online chat for assistance on the page
If you operate in the digital market and offer a website as a sales channel, investing in an online chat is the solution to optimize your response time to the maximum.
This customer service channel has a satisfaction rate of 73%, and customers say that the possibility of talking to representatives in real time and having their problems resolved from within the company page is their greatest differential.
In addition, the best solutions on the market also offer added features to online chat to optimize your online service, such as the monitoring of visitors and proactive invitations to approach the page.
15. Make callback available on your page
Callback is a technology that exists to solve essentially all the problems of answering by phone, such as waiting time on the line, uncertainty if the number is correct or if the operators are working hours and even to avoid IVRs.
This is because the callback allows customers request a call of your team, so that they can maintain their activities and simply wait a few seconds until the first available operator returns the contact.
16. Be ready to deal with adverse situations
Another very important factor among customer service tips is to recognize that customer interaction will not always be positive.
Of course, you must work to offer products and services with the same quality as your communication with consumers, but that does not mean that you will never have to deal with people frustrated and disappointed with your business.
In this case, be patient and carefully apply all the relationship tips that we present in this content to try to get around the situation or, at least, prevent the customer from becoming a detractor of your brand.
17. Be clear and honest
Achieving service excellence requires effort and dedication, but above all, it requires honesty during negotiations.
Never, under any circumstances, try to deceive your consumer or omit negative points of your product, services, contracts, among others.
This is the kind of bad faith attitude that can ruin your business’s reputation forever, in addition to not allowing you to retain customers and keep them.
18. Values your reputation
It’s not just bad faith actions that can tarnish your business’s reputation, as we mentioned in the previous tip.
The truth is that failures in customer service can be enough for consumers to use pages like Reclame Aqui itself, among other platforms – such as social networks themselves – to prevent your circle of contacts from buying from your business.
19. Innovate your services
Today, essentially every business already answers by phone and offers a contact email.
However, knowing that these channels are no longer enough to meet the expectations of the Brazilian consumer, several businesses have already adopted more modern channels.
Some examples are the online chat and callback already mentioned, social networks and even non-professional service channels, such as WhatsApp.
20. Know how to say no the right way
This is one of the customer service tips that cannot be missed in any business. After all, it is inevitable to have to deny extreme consumer requests and requests.
The problem is knowing how to say no correctly, not closing the door on new business.
When saying no, always look for alternatives, present other proposals and alternatives to keep the customer satisfied despite the negative result.
21. Offer service, not support
Providing good service is not necessarily the same as offering support, such as through a support center of companies offering services.
Today, more and more businesses are looking to innovate their call centers to adapt to the expectations of the modern consumer, who seek a personalized and exclusive service.
22. Leverage service to build customer loyalty
To maintain the success of your business over the years, it is important to invest in differentials that help you retain and retain customers to your brand, instead of working only to sell once to each customer and then abandon it.
Among these differentials, customer service has great weight, in addition to presenting an excellent ROI (Return On Investment).
As a Bain & Company survey presents, increasing your customer retention by just 5% can boost your profits by up to 95%.
23. Be consistent
Working consistently across all channels is one of the top customer service tips.
After all, you don’t want good experiences to be tied to just one of your representatives or to a single team responsible for online chat service, for example.
Consumers expect to find the same quality standard regardless of which point of contact they choose to contact their business.
And we are not necessarily talking about following the same script, but rather serving in the same friendly, proactive and personalized way, with a focus on the customer, in all channels.
24. Answer in more than one language
Today, the Brazilian market is already considered highly globalized. This means that even if your business does not export products outside the country, you still need to be ready to serve customers who do not speak Portuguese.
Therefore, it is very important to be able to serve consumers at least in English and, according to the demographics of your audience, Spanish.
To do this, hiring bilingual or multilingual operators and representatives may not be necessary.
Today there are solutions capable of automatically translating communication through certain service channels, such as the online chat on your page, for example.
In fact, the automatic translator is one of the resources most used by our customers at Websites Are Us, as it helps them not to miss business opportunities regardless of the language they use.
25. Pay attention to your availability
It is true that not every business needs to offer 24-hour service. However, this does not mean that you should ignore the best time to be available on channels such as online chat, telephone, etc.
So test and evaluate your reports to identify peak times in your business.
Hire according to these times and, in order not to close completely to consumers while your team is unavailable, make use of Chatbots to receive and redirect calls, for example.
26. Seek customer success
Of course, we couldn’t leave Customer Success out of our customer service tips.
Achieving customer success means offering a combination of very high quality products or services and a service that can really make your customers feel like they are winning whenever they follow through with a purchase decision.
Customer Success is exactly the difference between offering support and offering a satisfactory and exclusive experience for each consumer and, therefore, this is a strategy of great impact on customer loyalty.
27. Professionalize your service
Today, there are several companies that offer WhatsApp and other messaging apps that are not integrated with a customer service platform to communicate with consumers.
Considering the popularity of this channel in Brazil, it is not uncommon for companies to seek to leverage it to get closer to customers.
However, it is important to keep in mind that WhatsApp is not a professional service channel, as it does not offer resources for you to evaluate satisfaction rates, easily track calls or even keep your history organized and indexed – so that others team members have access when needed.
Furthermore, as it is connected to only a single user, it is not possible to say that WhatsApp is a scalable service channel, that is, capable of following the growth of your business when it starts reaching hundreds or thousands of consumers.
28. Integrate your channels
Today, the multichannel service model is already out of date and is not able to meet the expectations of the Brazilian consumer – especially in the digital market.
It is not enough to just offer multiple channels, it is important that they can share information with each other and that the consumer can, for example, make a purchase with their telephone team and request to pick up the product at the physical store.
The competition between telemarketing and other points of sale, where prices and conditions are different can be detrimental to the shopping experience, in addition to causing interruptions in the customer journey.
29. Become an omnichannel business
A company with a strong omnichannel strategy is one that allows its consumers to move through all available service channels without interruptions in communication.
This way, the customer does not need to explain his problems again when leaving the online chat and talking to a representative in the physical store, for example.
Because the customer’s information, as well as their service history, is available to all team members.
The omnichannel service model surpasses the cross channel and multichannel exactly because it focuses on the consumer experience – which is why this is one of the most important customer service tips for businesses that want to differentiate themselves from the competition.
30. Customize your automations
Today, it is very common for companies to use automation to increase their efficiency and ensure compliance with processes.
For example, when you register on a platform and receive a welcome email, that is an example of automation – usually done through email marketing tools.
Here, personalization refers to how you target the consumer. Instead of simply sending the same email pattern with a message “Dear customer…”, make use of the name of the consumer in question and ensure that the content of the email is relevant to them.
31. Do Upsell and Cross Sell in customer service
Upsell and cross sell are sales techniques that aim to increase the value of the average ticket – which represents how much each consumer pays, on average, for each purchase made. Of course, this technique can be incorporated into your service sessions.
No upsell, its goal is to present a better and more expensive product than the consumer’s initial choice. However, it is imperative that it covers the same initial needs and requirements – otherwise, the customer will know that you are not presenting a better alternative, but that you are just trying to push something more expensive.
Already no cross sell, the concept is to offer products or services that complement the customer’s initial choice. The best way to explain it is with the classic example of french fries and soda along with the snack chosen by the customer – where these two products are cheaper in the “combo” than if they were purchased separately.
32. Invest in after-sales
After-sales is another precious strategy among the customer service tips presented in this article.
Since your goal is to retain customers and make them return in the future to buy again, do not abandon them after a sale is made.
Invest in after-sales actions, such as email marketing shots or satisfaction surveys to see if the consumer is really satisfied with the product or service purchased.
33. Leverage social media
Today, 96.2% of internet users in Brazil have a profile on at least one social network. This means that, regardless of your niche or area of operation, it is certain that several of your customers use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn.
Therefore, do not abandon these communication points and try to use them to bring consumers closer to your brand.
Try to reinforce your digital presence and communicate with customers, either through the online chat native to the social network or integrated into your service platform, as well as through comments on publications and shared content.
34. Train your team
There is no point in hiring a new operator or representative and expecting them to know natively what the company’s language is and how to apply its values to customer service sessions.
Often, inconsistent service is related to the lack of training and qualification of professionals – where old operators already know how the business works and new employees end up having to learn on their own.
Therefore, to achieve the best results, do not neglect training your customer service team.
35. Be available on mobile devices
In 2018, a large part of the sale of fashion, multicategories and furniture ecommerces in Brazil took place via mobile, as a survey by the World of Marketing points out.
In addition, according to Statista – the world’s largest business statistics portal – today, more than 52% of online traffic occurs from smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices.
As you can see in the image above, this is a trend that should continue for years to come.
Therefore, being available and offering convenient points of contact for the mobile consumer is critical for every company that wants to transform its customer service into a competitive advantage.
36. Invest in CRM systems
CRM systems (Customer Relationship Management, or customer relationship management) exist to help you structure your sales funnel and processes to optimize communication and follow-up with your customers.
Through them, it is possible to configure sales automations, as well as delegate activities to members of your team and monitor everything in a visual and practical way.
That way, you will never lose business again for forgetting to return a contact or not remember if a customer has already received the requested budget or not, for example.
37. Request feedback on services provided
This is another one of the customer service tips that may seem really obvious, but there are still companies that fail to ask for feedback from their customers.
Who is better than your own customers to answer questionnaires about satisfaction with the services provided?
Either at the end of the service or through an email, send questions to measure the CES (Customer Effort Score), how:
- Are you satisfied with the services provided by our team?
- Can we solve your problem?
- How many times have you had to get in touch to resolve your situation?
And also take the opportunity to do an NPS survey, as explained in the next tip.
38. Track your Net Promoter Score
The NPS is a metric that indicates how likely your consumers would indicate your brand to acquaintances and family members.
To measure it, a scale from zero to ten is used, as follows:
- From 0 to 6, your customers are Detractors: that is, in addition to not recommending your brand, they have great chances of talking badly about your business to other people;
- From 7 to 8, your customers are Neutral: that is, they are not customers loyal to your brand, but they also did not have a negative experience;
- From 9 to 10, your customers are Promoters: in other words, you managed to achieve the loyalty of these customers, who were so impressed with the shopping experience that they felt free to indicate your brand to family and acquaintances.
To calculate NPS, use the following formula:
NPS =% Promoting Clients -% Detractor Clients
The percentage result should be compared to the following leaderboard:
- Critical Zone: between -100 and 0
- Improvement Zone: between 1 and 50
- Quality Zone: between 51 and 75
- Zone of Excellence: between 76 and 100
Send emails or forms so that customers can answer a short NPS questionnaire and then you will be able to not only do the calculation, but also identify those customers that deserve special attention in each category.
39. Track your metrics
Finally, we could not fail to mention how important it is to closely monitor your service metrics.
As well as the response time, Net Promoter Score and Customer Effort Score mentioned in this article, also be aware of your customers’ satisfaction rate through emails asking for feedback.
It is very important to quickly find out if something is wrong with your processes or with your team so that you can apply the necessary corrections before the problem negatively affects the experience of multiple consumers.
40. Be creative
Creativity is a term that is not used often when it comes to issues like sales and customer service, and this can be a problem for your business.
Understanding what the competition does is important, but have you ever wondered what you can do differently to gain and retain more customers?
There is no single answer, as it is necessary to consider the specifics of your business to find out what can be done – but differentiating yourself from the competition is one of the pillars for success.
Did you like the customer service tips?
We hope this article has helped you to identify the main aspects that differentiate excellent service from a service that is not able to help you generate more business.
And don’t forget, if you are looking for an omnichannel online service platform, install Websites Are Us for free on your page and take advantage of our online chat, telephony, callback and integrations with several solutions – including CRM systems.
We wish you good sales and that you can win and retain customers!
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