Soft Skills to Master for an Ever-Learning Customer Service Rep

If you are aiming for excellence, you can never stop learning and polishing your skills. What skills are needed for a great customer service?

There is a long-running debate over which set of skills is more important for a customer service rep, soft skills or technical skills.

A recent survey by Service Strategies concludes that 96% of respondents judged communication skills and interpersonal skills more important than technical skills for the success in customer support.  After all, to resolve any technical problem a CSR needs strong communication skills to effectively gather information, analyze it and find a solution which will help the customer.

A set of soft skills every CSR needs to learn:

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Why empathy is a key to employee engagement

Did you know that 51 percent of U.S. employees are looking for a new job? Why?

Aren’t they satisfied with their salary? Don’t they like their old laptops? Can’t they bear long traveling to and from office? Or maybe their chief isn’t empathetic enough?

It’s quite a difficult task to find the one who cares only about material values when deciding on a job. The ProvideSupport blog writers have prepared fascinating statistics on this issue. Take the trouble to have a look at it and find out how much chiefs lose per year just because of not being empathetic (reading will take you 3 minutes).

Each time when a young or already experienced specialist decides to apply for a job, they expect to be engaged at work, to love what they do, to have friendly and permanently smiling colleagues (such innocent fools!) and what else? An empathetic boss. Statistics show the great correlation between a chief’s empathy and employee’s productivity, that means between a chief’s empathy and company’s income.

Do you still doubt empathy plays an important role in business? Take a look at what we’ve prepared! >>>

4 Dimensions of Customer Trust: How To Get The Most of It

 4 Dimensions of Customer Trust
4 Dimensions of Customer Trust

Put simply, high trust is a dividend; low trust is a tax. In fact, in our increasingly low-trust world, trust has literally become the new currency of our global economy. — Stephen M.R.Covey

Digital innovation has transformed today’s business world: it has changed business environment and performance, as well as the whole landscape of customer choice. Today’s customers are more demanding, knowledgeable and selective, and the ways how they connect with brands nowadays largely define the key dimensions that shape up business relationships of the new digital era. >>>

The Importance of Critical Thinking in Customer Service

Critical Thinking For Customer Service
Critical Thinking For Customer Service

Customer service jobs require a composite mix of soft and hard skills for success. To positively interact with customers and team members we need social and emotional intelligence, and self-regulation skills. We also need lots of technical expertise, general industry and product knowledge to handle everyday customer requests effectively.

In our blog we have already published a series of articles highlighting skills for being awesome at customer service. Following those posts I would like to add up another skill crucial for service industry employees — critical thinking. This blog post also puts together some helpful techniques that foster this skill.  I hope that these tips will help you grow personally and professionally, and let you progress to the next level along your career journey.

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Real-Time Visitor Monitoring in Chat Support: How to Enable and Use It

How to use real-time traffic monitoring in live chat support
The benefits of real-time visitor monitoring in chat support

As a live chat software provider, we saw many of our clients adding direct messenger links to their websites and missing on the opportunity to see additional details about their customers and improve the quality of their customer service. Direct links to the messenger, although they allow the customers to chat with the company, don’t have the capability to pass any information from the visitor’s browser.

While we are aware that some of the live chat tools available in the market today don’t have this feature, which may be the reason some of our customers are not expecting to see this functionality, we try to encourage our clients to utilize the chat tool to its full potential and make sure that they take advantage of the benefits that real-time monitoring offers. >>>

8 Ways to Say No to Customers with Examples

8 Ways to Say No to Customers with Examples
8 Ways to Say No to Customers

Have you ever heard “No” as a customer? How did you feel? Were you disappointed? Sometimes it may happen that we need to say “No” to our customers or deliver negative news. In fact, this is one of the most unpleasant parts of customer service workflow. Dealing with negative news requires specific skills and self-control. It is not easy to say “No” and continue a smooth conversation.

In any customer interaction, the words you say either ruin your relationship with a customer or build it up. That is why it is important for any company to do this right across all customer service channels. So, how to say “No” without spoiling your customer service experience? Here are 8 tips to begin with. >>>

What Your Customers Hate and Love Most About Your Live Chat Support

What Your Customers Hate and Love Most About Your Live Chat Support
What Your Customers Hate and Love Most About Your Live Chat Support

There’s no doubt that in this increasingly digital era Live Chat has become the number one support tool for many businesses from different fields and industries. Small start-ups, mid-sized companies and major corporations use it to handle customer communication. Whatever the company size, they enjoy greater results in terms of customer satisfaction, mainly driven by high user adoption and minimum support needs.

What makes Live Chat so compelling to customers and why do more and more people prefer it over phone and email? And still, why do so many online consumers rate their typical live chat experience as poor? Let me share with you the top 3 pro arguments and top 3 worst attitudes to avoid. Look to these indicators to figure out how Live Chat can come in handy for your business, and what you should definitely bear in mind if you opt for this support solution. >>>

Customer Service Cheat Sheet for Live Chat Operators with Examples of Responses

 Cheat Sheet for Live Chat Operators
Cheat Sheet for Live Chat Operators

Chat etiquette plays a huge role in customer service. Professional and authentic interaction with clients goes far beyond the opportunity to make a sale. It helps to build a lasting relationship with the customer, inspire future communication and create fans and advocates of your brand.

How to treat the customer to be able to appreciate all these benefits and escalate your service to a more professional and human level?

Customer service training is the most important part in achieving these goals.

Professional line of communication is not that obvious to expect your service agents to get at it intuitively. It is especially true with new employees who often need help finding the proper style of communication which would stick with your business objectives and allow them to maintain their authenticity.

Below are some guidelines on how a service agent can best handle the major key points in a live chat conversation. >>>

FAQ Page for Customer Self Service: How to Choose the Questions to Cover

FAQ page for self service
FAQ page for self service

More and more customers take an advantage of self service options before contacting customer support representatives. In fact, Gartner reports that improving the self-service experience of consumers is among the top 3 priorities for companies that aim to improve customer experience and service. According to Zendesk 50% of customers think it’s important to solve product or service issues themselves. By creating a page for customer self service with most frequently asked questions and answers to them you will not only empower your online shoppers to find information they need in your support portal, but will also cut down on customer service costs. Here are the most important benefits of a FAQ page:

  • Assist your customers proactively by anticipating their needs before they have to ask for help
  • Cut down on customer service costs and save time of your customer service team
  • Offer your customers a portal where they can find not only answers to their questions but also read more about your company
  • Your FAQ page can be a valuable SEO and PPC asset
  • Educate your customers on the topic related to your business

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A Complete Guide To Using Canned Responses in Live Chat

Canned responses
Canned responses guide

Predefined, canned or saved responses in some cases help to facilitate and enhance live chat communication. However, live chat agents should keep in mind that misusing this feature may lead to their chat sessions sound robotic and unfriendly. All bread is not baked in one oven. The same should be applied to live chat canned responses for your company’s customer service. They should be unique and adjusted to your business needs.

Though, it seems quite clear what kind of responses to add, I would like to describe some scenarios which will help you to create canned responses for your live chat.

Greeting your customer

Most live chat providers offer an ability to customize system messages, which appear automatically when the chat is initiated. Definitely, adding valuable for your customers information to such messages will save your team’s time and will give your customers clear directions what to do further. You can include some basic instructions, greet your customers or just thank them for contacting your support chat. Here are a couple of examples of such messages: >>>