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What is customer service?
Customer service, often known as customer support, pertains to assistance given to customers at any point in their brand experience.
While support personnel typically responds when customers have a query or problem with a particular product, customer service goes beyond by seeking to understand better customer wants and wishes – before, during, and after contact.
Client service, formerly solely offered over the phone through a call center, has changed to accommodate customer preferences and now includes live chat, email, and social media platforms. Simply put, excellent customer service is a vital component of a pleasant client experience.
What is a customer service representative?
A customer service representative (CSR) communicates with customers on the company’s behalf, usually to address their concerns. They are the service providers’ front lines in customer support. They have firsthand knowledge of how satisfied and dissatisfied customers are with the services they have received.
A BPO customer service representative possesses a wide range of skills required to provide adequate customer service. It includes effective communication and problem-solving abilities, quick wit, and interpersonal skills. Customer service associates and customer service advisors or consultants are two other terms that are commonly used.
Responsibilities of a Customer Service Representative
Their responsibilities vary depending on whether they provide inbound or outbound customer service. Inbound CSRs answer incoming calls, chats, or emails from customers, address their concerns, perform basic troubleshooting, and assist them in navigating a website or app.
Meanwhile, outbound CSRs are primarily responsible for lead generation, billing reminders, appointment confirmation, and market research. In contrast to inbound CSRs, they are the ones who contact customers either through cold calling or via emails.
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Why is customer service essential for the success of your company?
Excellent customer service leads to a fantastic customer experience, especially when your support team goes beyond simply responding to problems and begins to anticipate customers’ issues.
When support agents are empowered to go above and beyond for customers or have a help desk solution that allows them to upsell or cross-sell relevant services efficiently, they can develop helpful experiences that let you stand out from the competition.
Support Is An Essential Component Of The Product Experience
The difference between products and services is becoming increasingly blurred, and customer experience has become an essential part of the product or service itself. (Think of Amazon’s Mayday button — it’s an entirely seamless way for customers to get assistance.)
It may appear that only prominent technology companies are doing this, but even small businesses are incorporating the product into their customer experiences.
Some online businesses begin by incorporating their support centers into the headers and footers of their websites or by adding links to relevant support articles to specific pages on their site.
In addition, many app developers include a way for customers to log tickets within their product experience. In-product support is the customer service trend of the future.
Potential Customers Will Be Willing To Pay More For A Better Experience
It’s not only the latest craze to put the consumer first; it’s also an excellent business. It turns out that not only will upgrading every touchpoint make your clients love you, but it will also raise your profitability.
According to polls, 86% of customers would pay extra for a superior customer experience. Assume that some of your customers are willing to pay a higher price for premium services like premium assistance, early access to new features, or other perks. You could want to divide your consumer base into tiers in that instance.
In any case, positive customer service experiences will benefit your bottom line.
Top tips for providing excellent customer service
Because customer service is a crucial driver of business success, it’s time for companies to stop viewing support as a cost center and start seeing it for what it is: an opportunity waiting to happen.
Every individual or company will define what constitutes good customer service. Whatever you call it, these eight tried-and-true customer service principles can help you transform your support operations and consistently provide the best customer service experience.
Understand your product
You spend your whole day as a customer support agent troubleshooting for customers, requiring product expertise.
A thorough understanding of your product is vital for providing excellent customer service. Ideally, you should believe in your product, go over all the features and use cases in detail, and show how it can help them.
You must help your clients get the most out of their purchases while also ensuring their value for their money. Make it your mission to understand everything you can about your product so you can amaze your customers with timely recommendations for additional features and services.
Team support for customers
Customer service is a team effort. Accept that you will never wholly understand every issue that comes into the support center.
Maintain open lines of communication with your team to stay on top of the big picture. Additionally, train all employees on your help desk software so that they can all pitch in during peak times.
Sure, you’ll want to delegate highly technical cases to experts, but everyone should be able to assist.
When everyone is on the front lines, staying focused on customers and maintaining service levels is more manageable when things get hectic.
Keep a positive attitude
When it comes to providing excellent customer service, attitude is essential, and having a positive attitude goes a long way. It’s easy to misjudge the tone of textual communication, and email or live chat can come off as chilly.
The brain deciphers another person’s emotional tone based on many signals, including body language and facial expression, many of which are absent online.
If an email or chat conversation grows tense, don’t be afraid to utilize emoticons or pick up the phone to show warmth and good humor.
Listen attentively to your customers and share their feedback
There’s nothing like speaking with a customer service representative who truly listens on all cylinders.
Take the time to learn about the issues and how they affect the customer’s business.
People are more likely to stick with your brand if they know you value their needs. Encourage customer service representatives to ask questions when interacting with them.
The more your agents understand your customers and their needs, the more valuable they are to your company and your customers.
Your customer service team might be a valuable source of product development ideas. The customer care team presents customer feedback at every business meeting in certain successful companies.
Dynamically solve problems
Over 80% of customers have abandoned a company due to poor customer service. That’s why you should like resolving difficulties for your clients and making it a core component of your support function — since there will always be problems to fix.
Don’t be scared to dazzle your consumers while attempting to fix their problems. You might fix the problem and move on, but by going above and beyond to meet their demands, you’ll develop clients who are loyal to you and your product.
Another aspect of good customer service is the promptness with which you respond. Customers are aware that more complex queries require more time to resolve.
There is a time difference between how quickly you respond and how quickly you solve their problems. Customers do not like to wait for tickets, but they are prepared to wait if it takes to fix their problems. You should be aware of this as well.
As soon as possible, respond to your customers. But don’t be too rushed to get them off the phone or close the ticket before you’ve fully resolved the problem.
Get better as you go
Do you see the same problems over and over? There may be a problem with your product or service, and you need to notify other teams so that they can fix it.
It could also be an issue with your manuals or support content. Investigate any ambiguities and update your knowledge base or FAQs.
You can reduce contacts for many repetitive problems and improve customer satisfaction by clarifying your messaging. Keep track of any decreases in service load and share your findings.
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Customer service is an essential asset in the business world—all of the elements listed above work together to produce excellent customer service. Excellent customer service is what keeps your customers loyal to you and your company — and it’s what earns you a reputation for being helpful and pleasant to work with.
Customers prefer to be treated as individuals rather than numbers in a ticket queue. Humanize them, as well as yourself, for customer-driven growth.