When it comes to providing outstanding customer service, it’s the people who make all the difference. While it certainly takes time, training, practice and dedication to become a rockstar in customer service, it doesn’t have to be that hard when you know where exactly to focus your efforts on. Here’s the list of 10 must-have soft skills that matter most and that everyone involved in customer service should master and use in their daily interactions with customers.
# 1 Effective Listening
Listening is the key to effective communication. Without the ability to listen carefully to what a customer is saying, a message could be easily misunderstood and misinterpreted. As a result, communication breaks down leaving a customer frustrated. Listening isn’t just about hearing. A good listener will not only listen to what is being said, but also what is left unsaid or partially said. Luckily, if your listening skills are weak, there are certain techniques for improving them. >>>
No business can afford to be a customer service laggard. NewVoiceMedia survey results reveal that an estimated $62 billion is lost by U.S. businesses each year following bad customer experiences. Forrester data shows that 72% of businesses say that improving the customer experience is their top priority.
Customer service trends topic is one of the most discussed today. Every year customer service experts publish their lists of trends, share their predictions and provide useful tips for improving your company’s customer service experience. In our blog we also published series of articles on this topic. Following those posts I would like to discuss three important customer service trends. >>>
What, truly, is happiness? Is it the central purpose of human life? A mere byproduct of luck? Is it a psychological state, or a positive evaluation of being?
For businesses, the answer to all of the above questions is, of course, who cares. The only definition of happiness that matters is the one that applies to customers, and a happy customer is one that’s loyal, that keeps coming back for repeat purchases, and one that recommends you to family, friends and social media followers. A happy customer is one that represents excellent customer lifetime value, and happy customers as a group represent a big impact on your bottom line.
According to a Gartner Group study, 80% of a company’s future revenue comes from a mere 20% of existing customers. Furthermore, it reportedly costs six to seven times more to attract a new customer than to keep an existing one. The way to amass these all-important happy customers, then, is to focus on customer retention by improving your customer service. Here are few tips you might just want to consider: >>>
There’s no question that live chat is getting huge as more and more businesses are adopting the tool to stay competitive in the industry. In fact, according to Gartner, by 2018, over 80% of companies will offer some form of live chat on their website or on mobile devices to interact with their customers. Is your business still lagging behind the trend?
There are many reasons why offering chat support might be a valuable customer service strategy. One of the most compelling arguments is that customers have come to expect it and they absolutely love it. The SalesForce research found that 64% of consumers expect companies to respond and interact with them in real-time, while 80% of business buyers expect the same.
People aren’t just using live chat, they’re actually getting more satisfaction out of it than from any other support channel. As stated in the Zopim survey, 94% customers proactively invited to chat were somewhat or very satisfied with their live chat experience. >>>
“Dispirited, unmotivated, unappreciated workers cannot compete in a highly competitive world.” – Francis Hesselbein
A company’s employees are often referred to as its most valuable assets. If you have clicked through to this post, most likely you are a business owner or a customer service manager, already well aware of the importance of keeping your employees engaged and motivated. Many of us realize that it’s critical to enable employees to reach their fullest potential, and leverage their skills and talents in the best company’s interest.
According to ACCOR Services, 90% of business leaders think an engagement strategy has an impact on business success, but barely 25% of them have a strategy. >>>
Customer service is a defining quality of almost any business nowadays. Before, if you were the only local provider, your flaws in the support department were not so damaging, considering there was no competition. Today, people can acquire services and products online, and the market in general is more competitive, hence customer service started to play a more important role.
Quality service, and a high number of satisfied customers can not only keep a business afloat, but also set the stage for future expansion, and for greater trust in your brand. On the other hand, a customer who is not satisfied or feels wronged can make an issue and make it harder for you to acquire new potential users, and considering just how many providers are out there, dissatisfied users are not a luxury you can afford.
So, let’s see how you can make your customer service better by relying on customer service knowledge base software, and also why this is so important nowadays. >>>
“Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.” – Mother Theresa
The way you respond to your customers shows how you respect them and their business. In one of my earlier blog posts I offered useful recommendations for greeting your customers. Today I decided to talk about a proper conversation closing. This idea occurred to me while I was writing an email to a customer and was thinking about the proper closing. >>>
Think of something you like to do regularly, whether it’s jogging, reading, or eating ice cream. What keeps you coming back? Chances are it feels good, and the emotions you associate with the activity make you want to do it again. In short, positive emotions lead to loyalty.
It seems like a simple equation, but how a brand should go about inspiring positive emotions in customers is a complex question. Emerging studies in behavioral science are telling us more and more about the relationship between emotions and decision-making. In the meantime, there are a few simple things any brand can do to spark positive, loyalty-inspiring emotions in customers. >>>
Did you know that there’s such a thing as International Clients’ Day? Although I’ve been in customer service for more than a decade, I first learned of it last week through a special offer email that I got in my inbox. Did you happen to hear about it too?
Whether or not, the fact is that this informal holiday has not been around for that long. Actually, it was proposed (and celebrated for the first time) by Lithuanian and Russian businessmen on March 19, 2010 as an opportunity to show gratitude to their customers. Since then, the occasion has been supported by many organizations and businesses in Western Europe, and it’s constantly expanding, with more companies joining the initiative year by year. Would you join the club too? >>>
Your customer service employees are your brand representatives, the human face and the voice of your company. Their competence, soft skills and communication habits count tremendously toward the quality of the service they provide to your customers and impact overall customer satisfaction.
So what are the most common mistakes made by customer service professionals? In this infographic we’ve collected 15 most dangerous mistakes that can have negative consequences in customer satisfaction and loyalty. Is your customer support team guilty of any of them?
In fact, all of the listed mistakes are easily preventable. Make sure your customer service employees are aware of what exactly they are doing wrong when interacting with customers and provide them with regular training and mentoring to help them grow their professionalism and improve their skills. >>>