Did you know that 90% of Americans use customer service as a deciding factor in whether or not they continue to do business with your company? Right now is a perfect time to look at how customers experience your shop—and whether they order on repeat, and refer others to you.
The good news is that 73% of companies with “above average” customer experiences perform better financially than their competitors, according to the Temkin Group.
Need one more reason to take a good look at your customer service? On average, companies that invest in their customer experience report an improvement in employee engagement by about 20%, according to McKinsey & Company.
As you review how your shop interacts with customers, here are three questions to brainstorm with your team.
1. “How can people reach us if they have a question?”
The more ways a customer can get in touch with your shop—phone, text, email, DM, and live chat—makes for better customer service, right? Not exactly.
If customers aren’t sure which channel is the quickest way to respond, they may send the same message to all of them. On your end, two of your reps may be responding to the same problem via email and live chat simultaneously, wasting time and confusing the customer.
There’s no doubt your business needs to have a social media presence to be top of mind for customers. However, your social media channels are another way for customers to interact with you or reach you about an issue.
This year, 62% of customers say they want to communicate with companies via email, 48% via phone, 42% live chat, and 36% say contact us forms, according to HubSpot Research. And if your buyers are millennials, they prefer to live chat.
When some shop owners start, they open up all the channels to learn how customers prefer to communicate. Then, they narrow those down to what the customer likes, depending on their demographics and lifestyles.
2. “Do I have staffers ready, willing, and able to help customers in real-time?”
According to buyers, 90% rate an “immediate” response as important/very important when they have a customer service question, and 60% of customers define “immediate” as 10 minutes or less, according to HubSpot Research.
Depending on your business and customer base’s size, it might be time to hire a full-time customer service rep or two whose primary role in your business is to handle questions and urgent concerns. Think of everything from “I need to change my T-shirt sizes” to “My event date has changed, so I need to move the in-hands date two days earlier” to “I got my virtual proof, and I hate how the artwork looks.”
You can also look into virtual call center services where you outsource calls during peak times to another company. That way, your customers feel they’re a priority. If it’s an urgent problem, the third-party company can escalate the call to someone in your shop who can address their problem right away.
3. “Do our customers feel like we ‘know’ them when they reach out?”
The days of sticking Post-It notes or using whiteboards to record your customers’ orders should be long gone.
Have you invested in customer service management (CRM) software to streamline knowledge about your customers in your shop?
Notably, according to HubSpot Research, 33% of customers get most frustrated by having to repeat themselves to multiple support reps. An effective CRM system lets your staff know precisely how to handle a specific customer’s problems because they can easily tap into a customer’s ordering history.
And of course, time is money, so it’s no surprise that 73% of consumers say that valuing their time is the most important thing a company can do when providing customer service. If you haven’t set key performance indicators, put some in place.
Find two more tips on how to create an extraordinary experience for your customer here.