A product isn’t just an item; it’s an experience. The same philosophy applies to your customer service strategy.
Customers are looking for more than a voice on the other end of the phone. Recent surveys reveal that 70% of customers judge business experiences by the quality of customer service.
Customer service is a helpline for customers, but it’s also a viable sales and marketing method.
If your customer service team isn’t turning complaints into sales, you’re missing a huge opportunity to increase customer acquisition, retention, and lifetime value.
Follow these tips and tricks to transform your customer service team into a sales machine!
Improve the Digital Experience
Customer service goes beyond phones, mail, and in-store reps. Your web design is vital to your entire customer service strategy.
Let’s start with user experience design or “UX.” This term refers to every user-friendly feature on your site. It covers everything from coding to content.
These are just a few UX examples:
- Easy website navigation
- Visible contact information
- Readable website content
- High-quality photos and media
- Product catalogs or service pages
- Hassle-free checkout experience
- Lightning-fast website speed
Multiple points of contact is another plus.
Deliver a true 24-hour experience with chatbots. Chatbots greet new website visitors, but they’re also available to answer visitors’ questions.
Chatbots pull answers from knowledge bases, so you’ll need to build up your FAQ database first. Include a link to that database on your website, as well.
You can also use real 24-hour chat agents. These agents work in shifts. You could employ them directly or go through a chat agent service.
Q&As are great, but chatbots and agents also sell products and offers to visitors. Program your chatbots to message new visitors with introductory signup offers. Draft chat scripts that instruct agents to upsell and cross-sell items.
Your chat agents don’t have to be “salesy.” On the contrary, chat agents have an opportunity to sell through education.
How to Measure Customer Experiences Online
Simply implementing digital customer service tools isn’t enough. You must analyze results to identify opportunities and improve trouble areas.
Fortunately, there’s no shortage of customer experience tools.
Start with a free web analytics tool, like search engine Analytics. Search analytics reveal your website’s visitor count, bounce rate, most clicked site elements, demographics, and more site metrics.
For example, your high bounce rate may be related to slow website speed, broken website elements, confusing web copy, or frustrating shopping experiences.
Are you trying to understand your customers’ experiences with helpdesk and email support?
Helpdesk data shows the number of tickets, resolutions, and wait time for each customer. This data can reveal the reasons for customer churn and support complaints.
Does your company use social media as a support tool?
Many top brands have separate support accounts on Twitter. Fortunately, your Twitter accounts come with free analytics, so you can measure engagement and satisfaction on social media.
Metric tools pile up. If you want an all-in-one approach, learn more about customer experience tools like Decibel, which calculates digital experience scores. These scores measure customer experiences across all digital platforms.
Measuring Customer Email Analytics
Are your customer emails not converting? Investigate your email analytics to learn why.
Email marketing management software comes with built-in tools for tracking the following metrics:
- Email bounces
- New subscribers
- Unsubscribe requests
- Email open rates
- Click-through rates
- Purchases from email campaigns
- Email shares
Email is a vital (and often underused) tool for customer service.
To maintain consistent customer service, automate your email strategy to include auto-responses for new subscribers, purchase confirmations, support requests, and follow-ups.
Remember to include limited-time offers, email-only discounts, and other incentives with visible calls-to-actions in you customer emails. This method can turn a simple confirmation email into a new sale!
Understand the Customer Journey
Customer service is an extension of your brand and marketing strategy.
Companies with horrible customer service attract onslaughts of negative reviews online. While large multinational companies can withstand a barrage of bad reviews, small businesses and new brands can’t afford that type of negative attention.
One way to avoid bad reviews is to treat customer service as a journey, just like marketing.
Great marketing strategies follow the buyer’s journey; this “journey” refers to customers’ natural step-by-step process when buying products. Like marketing, your customer service strategy should meet buyers at every stage of the journey.
Start with introductory materials like website pop-ups, chatbot welcome messages, and introductory emails. Agencies could arrange for introductory phone calls, which gives prospective clients a chance to talk to a real consultant.
Discover which avenues speak to your customers most. Every industry is different.
Leverage analytics and a/b testing to hone in on the right customer service strategy. For example, data may reveal that your customers prefer chatbot messages the most or outbound calls.
Turn Lemons Into Lemonade
Customer complaints feel like a punch to the stomach, but a successful customer service approach turns frustration into sales.
Customers want a listening ear; they want to be taken seriously. Customer service agents should be trained in active listening and quick resolution.
However, your agents need tools to succeed. Ensure your company has an attractive refund and return policy; this will help your agents satisfy customers faster and open the door to sales.
Routine support calls are also opportunities for profit. Like your online chat agents, phone agents also need scripts to follow. Instruct agents to suggest relevant products, offers, and loyalty programs.
Does your phone line get busy during the holidays?
Instead of subjecting customers to insufferable elevator music, play recordings of special offers, new product announcements, and special deals. You could even include a free gift for waiting!
Optimize Your Customer Service Strategy
Is your customer service strategy doing enough to satisfy patrons and generate sales?
Remember these ideas as you revamp your customer service approach for the new year, and check out the blog to discover more tools for success.