The important thing you can do to help your relationship with your client is great customer service. You might have a great product and great team members but something the client will remember is the service that they had with the company. A company’s most vital asset is their clients. Without clients there would be no business. When your clients are satisfied they help you grow by doing more business with you and refer you to family and friends.
Here are some steps to provide / improve your customer service:
- Empathy, patience and consistency. You will have clients that are easy to deal with and some that are not so easy to deal with. They might be mad, have a lot of questions or just like to talk. You have to be able to handle each type of client and have the same level of customer service every time. Great Customer Service is better than fast service.
- Being Attentive: Listening to a client is very critical in providing great customer service. Even if it is not good feedback that you receive you must listen. You must take the time to listen so you can identify what the customer needs.DON’T make assumptions! It's okay to ask them questions.
- Communication: Make sure you tell the client exactly what you mean. You don’t want the client to think they are getting one thing and provide them with something completely different. Always make sure to end the conversation confirming exactly what you are giving the client. Keep it simple and don’t let the client have any doubts. If they have questions or doubts make sure you answer them.
- Make sure you are accessible and respond in a timely manner: Make sure your clients have a way to contact you or someone within your company. There are many different ways they can contact you: phone, email or social media. Make sure they are easy to use and manage. Make sure that all emails and phone calls are returned within a 24 hour period.
- Knowledge: Your client relies on you for knowledge of your product. You must stay up to date on your products and know where to go if you don’t know the answers. You can also say “I don’t know”. If you don’t know the answer find a team member that knows. Clients appreciate honesty and help in finding the correct answers.
- Use Positive Language: Positive Language can make a client happy. Clients can create perceptions about your company due to the language you use. An example of talking to a client without positive language “ We don’t have the item you are looking for and won’t have it until next month”. Here is an example of talking to a client with positive language “The item you are looking for will be available next month. We can order the item now and contact you as soon as we receive it”.
- Adaptability and Staying Calm: Every client is different. You should be prepared to handle surprises , the client's mood, etc. You won’t be able to please everyone. There might be some things out of your control like a client that is having a bad day or a client that likes to complain about everything. No matter how much the client is complaining or talking you must stay calm. You cannot lose your cool.
- Follow up with the client: Follow up with a client after a problem has been fixed. You want to make sure that the problem is fixed and that the client is happy. An easy way to do that is to make a phone call, send an email or send a survey asking for feedback. By doing this the client can see that you care about getting things right and you are willing to work on it until it is right. When the client says “Yes it is good to go” or something along those lines you know that everything is fixed and they are happy. Great work ethic and willingly doing what needs done is key when providing great customer service. Can you give the client something that they cannot get somewhere else? What can you do to follow up and thank them even if they don’t buy from you? Knowing you are going the extra mile can make the client happy.
- Apologize if you make a mistake: If something goes wrong or you make a mistake you must The customer will appreciate you apologizing. You must deal with the problem/mistake right away and let the customer know. If you don’t then the client won’t be happy.
Per the Small Business Administration a recent three year study by the National Federation of Independent Business showed that small businesses that emphasis on great customer service are more likely to survive and succeed than competitors who emphasize on lower prices or their product. Yes lower prices are nice but most people are willing to pay more if that means great customer service.
I found the stats shown below in the following link:
What do you think is the Key To Great Customer Service? Leave us a comment below.