The customers’ journey doesn’t end with them making a purchase. In an ideal situation, your company wants their journey to continue far beyond this point. The best way to maintain these extended interactions with customers is through excellent aftersales services and customer support that create a positive image of your business to customers.
Improving customer service, however, is a lot more challenging than many believe, especially in a growing small business. As you cater to more customers, scaling up your ability to service them properly becomes a challenge that needs a solution quickly.
From studying startups and SMEs, we gathered several key strategies and tactics that can help you maintain a high customer satisfaction level. Here are the top five strategies to help improve your customer service and satisfaction level.
Establish a Strong Foundation
To form a strong foundation of excellent customer service, all team members should know how to serve customers and should understand what is required to deliver superb customer support at every turn. This may seem like an easy thing to do, but a failure to establish a customer service culture within the company is still a leading cause of failure among small businesses.
You can start creating this culture by adding a comprehensive platform for managing services and getting everyone involved in the process. TOPdesk, a leading name in enterprise service management solutions, provides the best solution for the job. Using ESM and ITSM solutions from TOPdesk, makes it easy to get all your team members on the same page.
The real benefit of using a platform like TOPdesk is access to better information management. Any team member can provide personalized customer support by referring to details and information on the platform. Transferring customers to the right support officers based on their specific needs is also easier through integrated communications.
Filter and Prioritize
Another critical component that needs establishing early on is a system for filtering and prioritizing service requests. While the goal is to deliver excellent customer support to all customers, it is still necessary to prioritize requests based on predetermined metrics.
Prioritizing service requests has its benefits. For starters, you can assign requests with different priority levels to different teams. As you grow your small business and become more extensive as an operation, you will find being able to set up small pods for handling service requests incredibly valuable. Scaling up is less of a challenge with filters and priority levels working for the company.
Prioritization is also handy when you start receiving more complaints under exceptional circumstances. It allows you to filter the service requests that need attention and those that are noise rather than legitimate requests. It takes some time to develop effective metrics for filtering service requests, so the sooner you start, the better.
Better Service Channels Management
There are two prominent approaches to offering customer support. You can either set a single service point for all customers or provide them access to customer support via multiple channels. What many small business owners don’t realize is that both approaches must end in a unified communications platform like the aforementioned TOPdesk.
The key in using multiple different channels is making sure you manage all of the service channels correctly, which means providing fast and accurate responses through all of them. Also, make sure that the customer experience remains consistent regardless of the channels used.
A unified communications platform simplifies the process of managing multiple channels for customer support. All questions and service requests are routed to a single management platform, allowing customer support officers to keep track of customers’ issues in great detail. To make the process even simpler, you can integrate FAQs and a comprehensive knowledge bank with the process.
Customer service isn’t an exclusive domain of the customer support department. It takes the involvement of all departments to make sure that customer experience remains positive, even when customers are having issues with your products and services. Collaboration, solidified into a workflow that everyone understands, is the next strategy to implement.
Develop a workflow that allows support providers to get help from other departments seamlessly. When there are immediate issues to solve, make establishing a new pod – a small, cross-functional team – easy and fast. Fast reactions and fast solutions to service requests is a defining element in ensuring customer satisfaction.
The next part is tackling the accuracy of your response. When there are multiple teams involved, ensuring a streamlined response can be a challenge. To solve this particular issue, make sure that all information about customers and their service requests are available – and easily accessible – in one platform to all teams in your company.
Last but certainly not least, integrate automation into your customer support processes. Without automation, it will take a considerable amount of resources to deliver a good user experience every time. Fortunately, automation is more accessible than ever. In an age of ever-growing technological advancements, you don’t have to invest a lot of resources to integrate solutions like artificial intelligence into your support workflow.
You can start the process of integration by reviewing mundane, repetitive tasks and automating them. Things such as responding to service requests and providing quick answers to frequently asked questions can be automated almost immediately. With a chatbot, for instance, you can take automating these two processes further and add personalization to the mix.
Automate customer information tracking by integrating multiple platforms and channels used by your small business. Data analysis and management are equally easy to automate, so you can go straight to understanding insights rather than spending time analyzing raw data.
These five strategies will take your small business customer service to the next level. There is one additional point to keep in mind: these are actionable strategies to implement without putting too much stress on your small business, not the only ways to improve customer interactions. Begin improving your customer experience by providing them with better aftersales services today.