[This article was written by Samantha Higgins.]
Look around your business. What would it be without customers and their engagements? Definitely nothing. Every business revolves around buyers. That is the sole reason you need to have commendable customer service if you must fall below excellent. And while many factors affect the quality of customer service, speed stands paramount above all of them. In this article, you will learn about five ways to speed up customer service.
1. Train front-line staff and decentralize authority
Your team will be interacting with customers each day they are on your premises. Therefore, it is an excellent investment to train them on how to handle people and events best. Well trained staff will lead to a smooth flow of communication regarding user queries. In addition to managing people, your customer support staff need to know your systems and processes. This ensures that every question is handled professionally without undue delays.
Training by itself can only help you achieve so much. You will need to map the customer support process and let support staff know which department/professional every query belongs to. Authority decentralization implies that support staff can make various decisions without escalating every issue. In the end, this improves interactions and reduces customer waiting time.
2. Know your customers
Even well-trained staff may find it challenging to deal with customers they know little about. Therefore, it is an excellent practice to learn as much as you can about current and prospective customers and pass the information to customer support staff during orientation or training. Knowing customers might involve dissecting the demographics, finding out their interests, and frequently buying the products. You can then match a particular category of clients to a specialist support assistant dealing with a specific product or service line.
Understanding what clients need makes your exchanges simple since you can point them in the right direction and reduce the waiting time. Additionally, directing clients to the correct waiting lines may ease congestion and improve the flow of operations.
3. Choose your systems wisely
We live in a technology-driven era where almost all aspects of a business are associated with a technological system. Today, customer support stations are equipped with systems to ease communication flow and track recorded/solved queries.
Besides the systems used purely for customer support, other systems, such as point of sale (POS) systems, may affect customer service speed. Generally, choosing the right system that fits the needs of your premises can significantly streamline things. For instance, there is a healthy clover vs. square discussion with users trying to find what works better depending on business environments.
4. Communicate through signage
Communication is an essential aspect of customer service. Lack of proper communication may see users get stranded, not knowing where to go or to whom various issued should be addressed. For this reason, you need to implement proper signage to give your customers direction when there is no support attendant nearby. Signs can direct people to offices and can also be used as labels. They should be readable and placed correctly on the premises.
5. Get social
Social media platforms are more than places for people to hang out. As a business owner/manager, you can utilize social media so that more people can reach out to you. And while a phone call, an email, and a physical visit to your premises might still be necessary for some situations, most user queries can be handled virtually through social media and other similar platforms.
In addition to social media platforms, live chat features on business websites are becoming increasingly important for customer service. Before making a phone call, about 70% of customers will have tried the chat feature or sent you a message on Facebook or Twitter. These communication channels can work to your advantage in speeding up customer service and, even better, driving sales.
Many organizations are struggling with poor customer service and, specifically, slow issue resolution. Often, you will find that such organizations are either operating with outdated practices and reluctance to innovate. However, a manager or business owner can turn things around by implementing the above five methods. Training your staff, choosing your systems wisely, proper communication, and using social media to your communication channels can significantly speed up your customer service.