No matter what type of business you’re in or the products you sell, your success largely depends on your company’s ability to provide excellent customer service. Strong communication skills create an atmosphere for positive interactions with your clients, even when they are dissatisfied with your product or service. Statistics show that 81% of consumers say that having a positive customer service experience increases their chances of returning to make subsequent purchases.
You might already have a good system in place, but like many other things about running a business, there is room for improvement. This article is here to help you find the best ways to improve your communication with your customers to keep them coming back.
Respond to unhappy customers
Sadly, not all customer feedback will be positive, and you might come across some rude or nasty reviews about your business, whether true or untrue. Understandably, you may want to ignore such messages or even delete them. But failing to respond will only harm you in the long run. As a business, you must not avoid any negativity. Instead, treat such complaints with concern and assist your customer with an open mind.
Many customers will forgive a company for a mistake if it holds itself accountable and resolves the problem. That makes honesty very crucial for the success of your customer relations. Although negative comments or complaints can be frustrating to deal with, you must consider it a learning experience and use it as an opportunity to retain your customers.
Ensure that there is dialogue
Your business will not survive if it does not use feedback to improve its operations. You cannot thrive in a competitive business space if you’re the only one disseminating information. Communication is designed to facilitate and encourage feedback. Therefore, you must think of ways your business can have meaningful dialogues with its customers.
Regardless of its size, many businesses have realized how powerful social media is in encouraging dialogue. Your customers can tweet their concerns or praises, and you can reply to them almost immediately. The same goes for other social media platforms like Facebook, where you can personalize customer interactions with its Messenger feature.
Apart from social media, there are other ways to establish a dialogue. Traditional channels like telephone lines and emails are effective.
Reply to inquiries as quickly as possible
While it’s good to answer comments and questions and acknowledge your customers, you must ensure that you respond as quickly as possible. It doesn’t matter if a concern seems trivial or small. When you show your customer that their concerns matter, they are more likely to return and continue doing business with you.
However, it is almost impossible to always be available, so that could be a challenge for you and your business. Larger companies have 24-hour customer service centers that allow them to cater to their customers at all times. If you have a small business, it might not be in the cards for you now.
Fortunately, several resources like www.owlreply.com help you communicate with your customers even when you are off the clock. You can outsource your customer service to a call center or automate your responses when they text or email you. Other resources like chatbots are also great ideas for improving your customer support services.
Use simple and unambiguous language
Since you’re an expert on your product and industry, you likely have a vast knowledge of what you sell. But your consumers often don’t know the complexities of making your product. All that matters to them is if it can do whatever it is designed to do.
When communicating with your customers, whether to answer inquiries or resolve an issue, ensure that you use simple and clear language for your answers and suggestions. If it is impossible not to use a technical term, make sure you explain further.
Being proactive is the key to staying on top of your customers’ feedback. That means you must take the first steps in contacting your customers before they contact you. When your customers see that you are taking active steps to ensure they are satisfied with you, it reduces their frustration while making them feel more appreciated.
But proactivity goes beyond calling clients to know how they are faring after purchasing your product. You can send them regular updates or even personalized emails on their birthdays. The key is making them feel comfortable knowing that you will resolve any of their issues.
Provide your customers with tutorials
One of the best ways to reduce the number of calls or emails you receive from customers concerning your product or service is by placing tutorials on how to use your products or services through infographics and videos. That way, your customers will have a resource to refer to whenever they are in a bind. Ensure that you regularly update your documents when there are any changes and alert your customers whenever you do so.
Make it a point to circulate your tutorials. Your website and social media pages are excellent channels for sharing. You can also have a few printed materials for walk-in customers if you have a physical storefront.
Be a good listener
You have also been a customer at different times, so you know how difficult and frustrating it can be when you’re not being listened to. Aim to do the opposite for your business. Even when customers call on your busiest days, ensure you give them your full attention during your interactions.
Don’t interrupt them when they are speaking. Take notes, and try to ask open-ended questions to gather as much information as you can from them. When you make it a point to actively listen to your customers, you will be in a much better position to provide excellent customer service.
Improving your customer communication is vital to your business’s success. Ensure that you attend to all your customers, whether it is a pleasant or unpleasant encounter. When your customers feel acknowledged, they feel more assured and comfortable working with you. Plus, you will have the opportunity to build a reputation as honest and reliable. It’s a win-win for every party involved.