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5 More Things Your Customers Expect When Calling You

5 More Things Your Customers Expect When Calling You

When your customers call in, they typically have high expectations regarding your center’s ability to field incoming calls and provide satisfactory customer service. If you missed the first part of this series, be sure to check it out. We’ll help you make sure your call center can provide customers with the following five things: Effective Communication In the world of customer service, communication is key. In order to address customer issues appropriately, agents should have an exceptional grasp of the language in question. For customer service representatives, it’s also important to remember that communication goes both ways. Not only should agents have superior speaking skills, but they should also have excellent listening and comprehension skills in order to communicate effectively. Understanding customer needs quickly means agents can solve problems correctly and efficiently. Quick Resolutions Depending your business’s focus, consumers can call in with a wide range of questions, issues, and needs. No matter the reason for their initial contact, though, it’s important that any agent can assist with and resolve the issue at hand. Unfortunately, many businesses staff their front lines with service representatives who don’t have the capacity or ability to problem solve. Instead of assigning only low-level tasks to frontline agents, equip them with the ability to offer helpful information, make important decisions, and provide quick resolutions. This may require some staff reorganization or retraining, but staffing your primary channels with capable agents will improve satisfaction and can lead to better agent performance down the road. Attention to Detail When customer service representatives answer the same set of questions around the clock, they have the potential to...
5 Things Your Customers Expect When Calling You

5 Things Your Customers Expect When Calling You

From support calls to order placement, customers contact businesses to complete tasks efficiently and effectively. Here are five things your customers expect when calling you. Stellar Customer Service First and foremost, callers expect stellar customer service from the moment a customer service representative first picks up the phone. Agents should answer all calls clearly and professionally, and they should have the knowledge and power to handle customers’ issues. Monitoring calls can help businesses ensure that they provide the best customer service possible. By analyzing agent and customer behavior and changing scripts accordingly, businesses can continue to adapt to customer needs, respond to evolving issues, and meet changing demands. Personalized Experience When contacting a business, no customer wants to feel like a cog in a machine. Instead, customers expect a personalized experience that acknowledges their unique problems and needs. Agents can meet this expectation by forging a relationship with each customer. From the very beginning of the call, an agent can insert a personal note by addressing the caller by his or name, but there’s no reason to stop there. Customer-oriented businesses should take full advantage of customer relationship management (CRM) software, which allows agents to enter and reference information about each customer interaction. Utilizing CRM software offers two big advantages. First, it informs agents about a customer’s previous order and support history, helping the agent to better serve the customer. Second, it provides outbound call centers with the information they need to contact customers regarding personalized order follow-ups, upcoming promotions, and future sales. Minimal Hold Times In a world where time is money, customers expect their calls or emails...
How You Can Easily Improve Consumer Engagement

How You Can Easily Improve Consumer Engagement

Engaging with your customers boosts their loyalty, and loyal customers are one of the most important assets for your business. Your repeat customers love your products, are less likely to turn to the competition, will give you the benefit of the doubt if something goes wrong, and will tell their friends about how you helped them. The question arises, then, how can you engage with consumers and ultimately increase their loyalty to your business? Really Listen American author Bryant H. McGill once said, “One of the most sincere forms of respect is actually listening to what another has to say.” Show your customers you respect them by asking for their opinions and acting on what they say. This may happen on a large or small scale. Consumer surveys may reveal areas where your business can improve as a whole. Individual comments can alert you to the need to further train specific team members. Also, getting to know your customers on a one-to-one basis can help you design sales pitches and find personal ways to show you care. Be Available An article on Inc.’s website points out, “Your customers decide if and when to communicate. Your job is simply to give them the tools that make the interaction and communication easy and natural.” Social media, email, and online chats are all useful channels for interacting with customers, and different customers prefer different channels for different situations. They may send an email for casual inquiries. To share an opinion, social media may be the method of choice. For immediate needs, however, many may prefer to talk to a person on the...
Customer Service in the Mobile Landscape

Customer Service in the Mobile Landscape

As mobile technology advances, customers interact with companies in new and sometimes unexpected ways. Is your customer service strategy prepared to address mobile customers? Learn how innovative solutions can give your customer service a boost in the mobile landscape. Why You Need to Go Mobile Only a few short years ago, smart devices were new to the market and didn’t yet drive consumer behaviors. At that point, creating specialized solutions for mobile consumers was optional. Today, however, two-thirds of American adults have a smartphone, nearly half have a tablet, and almost all have a cell phone. Now it’s necessary for companies to approach customer service with a mobile focus. To address this market shift, you can look to a number of solutions. Email Support In this burgeoning landscape, smartphones offer endless possibilities for connecting. Mobile users spend an impressive 86 percent of time on their mobile devices interacting with apps, which means phone support isn’t always the best option for your company. Since many users choose emailing and chatting over talking on their phones, email support is becoming a preferred customer service solution. When you choose email support from Novasors, you can rest assured that your customers receive timely and effective responses. Live Chat Constantly on the move, mobile users don’t always want to wait for responses to email inquiries. When consumers need immediate answers to their questions and solutions to their problems, consider live chat support. From IT support to help desk services to order fulfillment issues, you have a range of live chat options. Since live chat services allow agents to multitask and provide quick answers, this...
Meet Your Customers’ Needs in Their Preferred Space

Meet Your Customers’ Needs in Their Preferred Space

“Your customer doesn’t care how much you know until they know how much you care,” said Damon Richards, a customer service expert. Indeed, the way you interact with your customers can impact your business’s bottom line just as much, if not more so, than the quality of your products or the incentives you offer. Some businesses fall into the trap of designing their operations around what they think their customers want; they fail to do the proper research, and they end up with results that fall short of expectations. What are some things you can do to meet your customers’ needs in their preferred space, rather than in your own? Ask Your Customers What They Want Oftentimes, when you visit a website or make a purchase at a store, you’ll receive a gentle nudge to fill out a quick survey. You may want to let your own business follow this trend, but be sure to pay careful attention to how you craft your survey. Your survey should be brief and ask concise questions. Be careful not to word your questions so they encourage a particular answer. You should also set goals for your survey to give you a frame of reference when you look at its results. You may conduct surveys online, over the phone, or even through snail mail; the format you should choose depends on your audience. Sometimes, you can skip the asking part when it comes to discovering what your customers want. Look at online review sites and record customer service calls. This will give you insight into areas that could use some improvement. Think Beyond...
Are You Losing Customers Because of Hold Times?

Are You Losing Customers Because of Hold Times?

It happens to everyone. You phone a business and hear a polite recorded message telling you that all customer service representatives are assisting other people. You get put on hold with an estimated wait time of anywhere from a few minutes to a half hour or longer. Do you hang up, or do hang in there? If long hold times cause you to give up on trying to reach a real person, you’re far from alone. Help Scout points out that, according to a 2011 American Express customer service survey, two of the phrases that customers least like to hear are: “We’re sorry, but we’re experiencing unusually heavy call volumes. You can hold or try back at another time.” “Your call is important to us. Please [continue] to hold.” How does your business do with hold times? How can you reduce waiting? How Long Is Too Long? Various surveys have found some eye-opening numbers about hold times. The average customer will hang up after about two minutes of waiting to speak to a customer care assistant; this is generous when you consider that about 40 percent of web users will leave a website if the site does not load in three seconds or less. About one-third of the callers who hang up after two minutes of waiting will not try again. The average hold time across businesses of all sizes is 56 seconds. For small businesses, the average hold time slides in just under the two-minute threshold at one minute and 47 seconds. Clearly, to differentiate yourself from your competitors and grow your customer base, you need to cut...

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