A study by Microsoft has found 66% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase from a company with excellent customer service, while 60% have decided not to finalise a purchase after receiving poor customer service. Especially when convenience and competitive prices are just a click away, excellent customer service remains a vital part of customer acquisition and retention. Repeat customers are your greatest asset for ongoing financial success; they can also become your greatest advocates.
Provide opportunities for feedback
Already time-poor customers aren't likely to stick around and fill out feedback forms. Instead, ask for an email address at point of sale to increase your email marketing subscribers and offer the chance to provide feedback. Positive feedback shows staff their work is appreciated and lets you know your business is delivering exactly what customers want. Even negative feedback should be viewed as opportunities to improve your products or services. Customers also bring with them their own experiences with other businesses. Listening for positive experiences they've had with a competitor can help you understand how to improve.
Put your best face forward
Hiring friendly, positive staff is the first step to great customer service. Candidates with the right skills, personality, and a desire to learn can be greater long term investments than those who look better on paper. Your front-line staff are the face of your business, so take care choosing people who will help create the right image and atmosphere.
Let people know about you
Don't underestimate the power of word of mouth. With social media providing a captive audience for every highlight - and lowlight - of a customer's experience, ensuring they feel appreciated is a valuable opportunity for free advertising. One study suggests a happy customer will tell 9 other people about a positive shopping experience, while an unhappy customer will share a negative experience with 22 others.
Some of the best customer success stories have even gone viral thanks to social media, exponentially increasing a brand's visibility and sales potential. Combining great customer service with an engaging social media presence allows your customers to become powerful brand ambassadors.
Support customer service with intuitive CRM
Particularly in the digital economy, customers and staff need fast, efficient response from your CRM solution. Even with friendly representatives, an underwhelming CRM system can leave a customer exasperated due to slow service, poor information sharing and inaccuracies.
Choosing a seamless and intuitive CRM solution allows your staff to work with detailed real-time information, share it easily with other staff, instantly communicate new orders and deliveries, and help provide a comprehensive customer service experience.