It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that the two things that top the list of complaints about calling a customer service line are long hold times and having to repeat an issue multiple times. According to Forrester Research’s North American Technographics Customer Experience Online Survey, Q4 2013, over 75 percent of customers think valuing their time is most important. Valuing a customer’s time is involved in the best customer service strategy, as agreed by Shep Hyken, an expert.
Prioritizing valuing customer’s time entails eliminating the above said top two complaints, probably by shortening call hold times by utilizing a scalable outsourced agents model during peak call times and eliminating the need for customers to repeat themselves by having a single, multichannel desktop that provides a 360 degree view of the customer. Other than these two, there are ways that brands can do to make sure that the customers feel that their time is valued and impact customer experience.
1. Foreseeing the Customers’ Need
Brands that are proactive in social listening – that is being always present on social media – enables them two things: to determine the issues or complaints customers have even when not directly addressed to the brand, and to determine new needs or demands in the marketplace. This quiet observation enables brands to better understand their customer, and thus helps them be guided in their decisions and production in business. Those that embrace social media use it to their leverage to mitigate customer dissatisfaction and gather invaluable insights into the future direction of their market – both which are time- and energy-saving for customers.
2. Saving the Sales Pitch
Although it’s a given that customer retention be prioritized, sometimes one needs to know when to cut losses. A customer’s issue must be efficiently addressed right away, and it must be accepted that not every interaction is guaranteed to increase the bottom line. Brands are too often focused on keeping a customer, upselling or cross-selling that the quality of service is compromised. Sometimes, withdrawing in a graceful way is the best to keep the customer in the long run. You might miss out on a particular sale, but fighting with all that you can to keep a customer is a sure fire way to end the relationship for good.
3. Ensuring a Follow-Through and Follow-Up
It’s an often case that customers go back to the brand to resolve a problem. Unfortunately, the brand should carry the burden of having a follow-up instead of allowing the customer do it first. This ultimately completes the interaction by finishing the communication loop. Call or send a quick email to thank them for doing business with you, ensure their purchase is working out and ask for feedback. This mitigates customer frustration as the opportunity to ask question regarding the brand is given You may also show your appreciation through a quick tweet or Facebook comment. Anything will do as long as you keep the communication line open in a way your customers prefer.
Although obvious, these simple things are still overlooked. Following these practices will help you have a niche in the competition, better enhance customer experience, and on top of it all, will make customers feel they and their time are valued.