The importance of customer care
Whether you’re selling a product or a service, customer service can either secure you repeat business, or could cause you to lose clients; both existing and potential.
96% of customers who score an organisation highly for customer satisfaction intend to repeat purchase and remain loyal, compared to just 66% of those who rate customer satisfaction slightly lower. A bad experience could therefore lead to a future loss for your business, making customer facing roles incredibly important.
One of the key elements of customer care is communication, which is a skill that is much more complex than you may initially think! Psychologist Albert Mehrabian researched what communication factors are actually remembered following a person-to-person interaction. He found that:
- 7-10% of what was recalled was the actual words used
- 30-35% was the tone of voice
- 50-55% was the body language.
This means that it isn’t just what you say that matters, it’s how you say it and how you present yourself when saying it! But that’s just the tip of the iceberg; communication is a vital element of customer care, but there’s much more to it than meets the eye. Whilst we’d love to give you all the answers in a blog post, we can’t! So instead here are a few tips to help you get started on the road to amazing customer care.
Empathy is one of the most important things to establish when dealing with people, both in the person, on the telephone, or online. Establishing empathy will help you connect with the customer and build rapport with them, making it more likely that they will come away from the situation feeling better.
As they’re speaking, make ‘listening’ sounds and don’t interrupt them. Agree wherever possible, and make sure you use positive language throughout the conversation such as ‘yes’, ‘I agree’, and ‘absolutely’.
Be solutions focussed
Often, people just want to be heard, but when there’s a problem they want it to be sorted and dealt with properly. Instead of saying you’ll get back to them, or you’ll pass it on, make an effort to find a solution. Explain the next steps, offer them options that can resolve the situation, or, if you don’t have the answer straight away, let them know when you’ll be in touch.
Going around in circles and being transferred from person to person can make the customer experience much worse. What started out as a small problem, for example a damaged parcel, can turn into a real source of frustration and stress for the customer if it doesn’t get sorted as soon as possible.
Know your telephone system
It sounds basic, but do you know how to hold a caller, return to a call, and transfer a caller seamlessly? Accidentally cutting off a customer does not reflect well on the business as it looks amateur and unprofessional, callers will want to feel safe and secure in your hands.
Spend some time getting to know all the functions of the company telephone system and get into the habit of using them – your customers will be much happier for it!
If you’d like to learn more about providing perfect customer care, take a look at our Customer care and telephone skills course here.