Everyone knows that customer experience is the key to customer loyalty. Keeping customers happy and returning to your store, again and again, is key to success. But what does that mean?
If you’ve been in the customer services industry for even a short while, you’ve probably heard the term “customer experience” a lot. Especially when it comes to customer service.
You see, customer service was only just recently coined, and people are starting to take it much, much more seriously than they used to. Because let’s be honest – when was the last time you left your store happy and feeling like you got a great deal on your new wardrobe?
A lack of customer service and a bad experience are the same thing. The way you handle a customer service query can determine how happy they are when they leave. So what can you do to ensure that your customer service strategy is the best it can be?
We’ve all experienced a bad customer service experience in our lives. Maybe it was a transaction with a company, or maybe it was a bad department store experience. Or maybe you’ve just been treated poorly by staff at work.
Whatever the case, it’s embarrassing. You may not think it matters, but your customers do. If they can’t trust that they’ll receive a positive experience when they visit your store, then they’ll have no reason to go back.
Define your goals
If you’re simply trying to increase foot traffic in your store, you might not be thinking clearly about what drives customer traffic.
Do you want more customers? Or do you want to make certain types of customers happy?
Let’s take a look at each in turn.
More Customers – Good customer service is about making certain types of customers happy. Tailor-made services like those provided by hotels and resorts can ensure that every customer is happy.
When you have happy customers, you’ve got a better chance of having them coming back.
Better Customers – Customer service that’s great for certain types of customers (e.g. senior citizens, children) has a high likelihood of working better for other types of customers.
New Customers – If you want to make sure that every new customer has a great experience, you can always offer a free subscription to a customer service magazine. They’ll help you increase your customer service turnover, and new customers will love you for it.
Set up a process for customer service
When it comes to creating a customer service strategy, there are a few things you must understand well.
Your customer service experience is different for every customer. You must tailor your service to their needs.
Your customers are different from one another. You must understand what aspects of your customer service they find important, and work to make those features better.
Set up an email system
If you want to ensure that every customer gets a positive experience when they visit your store, you must set up a proper email system.
This could be a Gmail account or a separate folder within your account. There are many advantages to both setups.
Transparency is key when it comes to customer service. You must let your customers know how you’re choosing to serve them.
This can be in the form of a communication breakdown or a lack of communication. If a customer contacts you regularly with questions or complaints, you must be able to respond to them promptly, and clearly.
With the way the internet is now, it’s incredibly easy to hide behind a company’s tweets or Facebook posts or keep a very low profile when you don’t want to.
As we’ve seen, emotional labor is important in customer service. You must have the skills to handle a wide range of emotions from your customers.
This can be in the form of being able to read body language, or being able to identify coping skills that your customers may be using. Knowing this, you can offer support and guidance where you see necessary.
Being empathetic also means you must ditch conventional thinking when it comes to customer service. You must stop thinking about how you can cater to every individual, and instead focus on how you can meet the needs of the majority.
Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback
Asking for feedback is key to any kind of strategy. It can be on your products or services, or on how you run your business.
And what’s more, you should value the feedback you receive.
If a customer sends you feedback, even if it’s just a line or two, take the time to read it carefully. You never know when a helpful tip might come in handy.
Do you know what customer service is? And do you know how you can improve upon it? The answers to these two questions should be easy, given that they’re directly related to customer experience.
But before we get started, let’s talk about why it’s important, to begin with, the beginning.
Our customer service strategies are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to creating a customer experience strategy. Your entire customer experience strategy is made up of different strategies, each aiming to do one thing differently.
And that’s what makes a great customer experience strategy – it’s a holistic approach that takes into account all of the different strategies that make up the customer experience.
So, when it comes to creating a customer service strategy, what’s important is to start small.
If you’re not sure where to start, consider starting with a problem you’re experiencing. You can always expand from there.