Customer service is something that a staggering amount of businesses overlook. But why is this happening? The answer is simple: because businesses tend to focus solely on developing their product or service. They spend minimal resources on customer relations. That's why many customers don't return to purchase again, even if they feel satisfied with the transaction. People are sociable creatures, and they need to think that the transaction was done on a personal level. A customer wants to know that their purchase means something to the business, and it's up to you to make sure they feel that way.
You must show empathy when things don't go right
No business is perfect. You are going to make mistakes. When something wrong happens, you've got to bite the bullet and let the customer know you're sorry. How do you show the customer that you are sorry about what happened? The answer to that question depends on the situation. You might only have to tell them that you're sorry for what happened and that you'll make sure it never happens again. Some situations might require a refund or giving away something for free. Whatever you do, make sure that the customer feels that you understand that their needs weren't satisfied.
What’s also important is to thank your customers for everything. For example, if they share some feedback with you, you should definitely thank them. Another instance is when they renew their subscription or buy again. You should also thank them for their patience if something goes wrong.
Another important piece of advice for you to have in mind here, is that you should “treat your customers as you want to be treated as a customer”. If you try to remember this, then your customer interactions won’t go wrong.
It’s more likely that your customers will continue buying from you and even refer your business to their friends if they have a positive experience. Try to make every interaction worth it, and make them feel good about working with you.
A little small talk goes a long way
You don't realize the impact that customer interaction can have. Even something as small as making sure that your email autoresponders are bright and cheery can make a huge difference. Every part of the conversation is vital to customer satisfaction, and that's what you have to keep in mind. If you offer live chat, always tell the people talking to customers to be polite and thoughtful. The person on the other end of the conversation will base what they think of your company on how the chat operator communicates with them.
Don't be afraid to seek out the opinions of your customers
You've got to have a thick skin to be in business. Sometimes customer feedback is the only way you'll ever be able to tell if something is going wrong. Don't expect everyone to give you feedback, and sometimes the feedback you get won't be too flattering. The important thing to walk away from all of this is with information that you can act on. If the customers are happy with how everything is going, then you're doing something right. Negative feedback is more valuable than someone patting you on the back because it helps you make your business better. The hope is that people are honest and not telling you off because they had a bad day.
A good way to ask your customers to give you feedback is through customer surveys. Customer surveys can be very helpful since it’s a way for your customers to express their opinion about your product or service and in that way they will feel valued. Moreover, using customer surveys you will be able to prevent any problems from happening since you will know your customers’ opinion beforehand.
Open lines of communication are a must for a solid customer relationship
Your customers need to feel like they can talk to you. Any time that customers feel they can't approach your business with needs or concerns, then you've failed them. No business is right all the time, and you've got to find a way to make sure that you aren't causing an unnecessary rift between you and your customers. Always let them know that you're here to service their needs. It's called customer service for a reason, and it's because it's your job to service the customers.