Communicating with your customers directly is one of the most effective ways a business can improve their brand and global outlook. Marketing efforts can only get you so far. Once a customer makes, or is close to making, a purchase, it is time to put extra effort in satisfying them in order to build a customer base that keeps returning for more. This is where customer service enters the picture.
Up to 76% of customers base their decision to make a purchase on their customer service experience. A large portion of revenue is reliant on communication and building relationships rather than product development. Some of the largest companies such as Apple and Google have now begun investing more in public relations and communication rather than R&D.
Brand quality is unmistakably tied to customer satisfaction. In this blog, we’ll be sharing how, in our experience, customer service can help companies improve their outlook.
According to one research, direct human interaction is the biggest sales driver in a business. While automated customer response systems have certainly shown their potential, nothing comes close to a person directly talking to your customers. It is the reason why more than 91% of callers in any given customer service opt to speak directly to a representative rather than choose an extension. When asked why in multiple surveys, customers consistently responded that they find a company more trustworthy if they got a chance to speak directly with a person.
Trust is perhaps the biggest asset that a company can build. Having great products or services is one thing, making customers confident enough to make a purchase is a completely separate challenge. Customer support helps create that much needed bridge between sales and acquisition.
For online stores, high quality ecommerce customer support is imperative for building brand reliability. With ecommerce seeing its highest growth in the last 5 years, online users now have more options than ever when it comes to buying products online. With competition at its peak, the best way to stand out is with excellent customer service that understands and speaks to your target audience.
Any automated solution such as chat-bot or auto-responders will simply never be enough to gain customer trust. A well-trained call center or remote agent will always be the best representatives to connect your customers with.
In our experience, most businesses struggle with keeping existing customers returning for more. After customers have made their first purchase, most of them tend to bounce off without much explanation. Customers that stay tend to make more purchases than new ones and, therefore, are your most valuable client-base.
Retention can be achieved in a number of ways. The usual approach is to consistently create and diversify new products or services in order to attract your existing customers to try some of your other offerings. But perhaps the best and easiest strategy to retain customers is by consistently communicating with them, hearing their issues and then by responding in a timely manner. This is made simpler with customer service.
From a cost perspective, it is always a much better idea to keep your focus on retention. In one survey, it was found that companies would have to spend almost 700% more to find and gain new customers rather than keep the existing ones. Because of this, many businesses are now putting more focus on retention rather than acquisition. With a lower customer churn, companies can not only improve their trust factor, but also substantially reduce cost. And as mentioned above, the best way to increase retention is by having high quality customer support ready to respond 24/7.
Customer service is more than just for answering calls and resolving complaint tickets. It is one of the best places to start when trying to understand your customers better. Call centers that utilize modern VoIP software usually have customer management tools retrofitted with their technology stack. This means that most agents aren’t just responding to phone calls and messages, they are also helping to maintain customer data. Everything from product preferences, demographics and common complaints are stored by contact centers for use by marketing and sales. This can allow many businesses to find key areas where their service is lacking or discover new opportunities.
When directly talking with customers, representatives can further solicit feedback with common questions to find what they like, why they chose and why they decide to stay with a brand. This allows companies to hone in on their unique selling points and find out how to further improve their offerings. Ideation is always fueled by insight and feedback. And customer support is perhaps the best way to unlock all that information.
Winning a Losing Customer
It is inevitable that companies will often face irate customers and unhappy buyers. A company’s ability to turn them into life-long consumers is what differentiates an average business from a forward-thinking and successful business. The only way to do this is by having exceptional customer service. Oftentimes the best response to unsatisfied customers is to simply talk to them, understand their pain-points and resolve their issues with kind words and a smile.
In one research, it was found that up to 80% of customers will return or continue doing business if their customer service experience was rated ‘good’ or ‘satisfactory’. Most companies tend to bleed customers due to minor issues. For example, online stores observe a big drop in sales if there is a hosting issue that slows down their site. However, active customer support can quickly inform consumers of this issue, preventing them from abandoning their service. It is not easy to elegantly handle unsatisfied customers. Call centers need to have experienced agents that are properly trained and coached.
Building a high quality and effective customer support for your business is a challenging undertaking. For those who are inexperienced, it can be difficult to know where to start. With IdeasUnlimited, our goal is to help you streamline this process so you can start your very own customer service operation as fast as possible. Everything from deployment to extension can be handled by our experienced team who have served over 500 clients from around the world for more than 12 years.