Customer service is the support you offer your customers, both before and after they buy and then use your products or services with the objective of ensuring they have an easy and enjoyable experience at every touch point with you.
It is often a direct one-on-one interaction between a consumer making a purchase and a representative of the company that is selling it. An interaction and experience that often highly influences the decision to purchase, even when the potential buyer knows that they want to buy.
Good Customer service will help you to:
- Build your customer loyalty
- Increase the total spend by each customer
- Retain your customer for longer and increasing the lifetime value of your customer relationships
- Encourage your customer to buy from you more often
- Generate positive word-of-mouth about your business
- Gain competitive advantage
Good customer service often relates to the provision of timely, attentive, engaged service to a customer, and making sure their needs and expectations are met in a manner that reflects positively on the business and it’s brand.
You may argue that the outcome of good customer service is a sale that does not result in a return, complaint or negative comment, but a repeat order or recommendation.
If customer service is not experienced first time, then there is an opportunity to recover the relationship. For example, effective complaint handling by your returns team.
Good customer service may come naturally to some and others may develop these skills with good training. I am continually surprised by people in such positions who obviously can’t or don’t want to offer such an experience.
The skills and characteristics often needed included:
- Patient and calm
- Product knowledge
- Empathy and compassion
- Body language
Good customer service is a cycle. Your business delivers a level of service that impacts your customers and reflects in how your team feel.
So keep it positive!