An overwhelming 95% of respondents cite customer service as important in their choice of and loyalty to a brand. And 61% of our respondents have switched brands due to poor customer service, with nearly half having done so in the past 12 months. Customer service is about more than simply solving customer inquiries—it should be an integral part of your customer acquisition and retention strategy.
Quoted directly from the ‘State of Global Customer Service Report 2018’, this reveals a lot about customer service! This isn’t a concern for one specific industry, this applies to both you and I.
95% is not a number that can be ignored, it is almost all the customers you have!
What the above facts – and through them your customers – demand is ‘better’ customer service (which is not fulfilled by the FAQ forum on you website).
Where can you go wrong in serving customers?
I’m pretty sure that you aren’t a business that believes (good) customer service is required only at the moment of purchasing/selling. (If you are, you’re in great danger!)
Customer service is required to begin even before the customer shows an interest in your product/service, and needs to last as long as the customer uses the product/service. And, it doesn’t count even if the customer service your business provides lasts for the required period of time, if it is not ‘GOOD’!
How to make it better?
Do you really LISTEN to your customers? Are you sure?
Well, your customers do not seem to think so!
While 90% of customers believe that businesses should let them give feedback, only 37% said that they were given an opportunity at least occasionally, and only 7%(!!!!) stated that they were given the opportunity to do so almost all the time, according to the aforementioned survey by Microsoft.
These numbers don’t look good, do they? Are you in the occasional 37% or the never-done-it 17%? Well, neither is good!
Surveys, emails/SMS communication, phone calls, social media listening… there’s a lot of ways in which people express their opinions and present their inquiries to you. Respond to them verbally or non-verbally. Show them that their inquiries and opinions are being valued.
Listen to your customers starting from the time before they show an interest in your product/service and continue listening and responding as long as they use it.
It might be a ‘typical’, ‘trivial’ inquiry about your product, it can be an inquiry coming from a customer after three months of purchasing, or it can be an inquiry that you get hundred times a week from hundred different customers – still, you should listen and respond to each of them equally well. You can’t respond well to 25 people and get tired at the rest of the 75 people; that’s what’s going to come in the stats report of your business in the form “75% stated that the customer service is not satisfactory”.
Also, this is why most customers leave your business. If you don’t believe, 61% has stopped doing businesses with brands, and 48% of them was during the last 12 months.
Check the following image.
It has been one week but the business has not yet responded to the customer’s inquiries.
The first impression the business has made on the lead/customer isn’t a very nice one, is it? If it’s a lead, then this unanswered inquiry is equal to a “bye please don’t come again” notice, not just to that particular lead but to the other potential customers who would go through the business page and see it. If it’s a customer, well then the business doesn’t have him/her as a customer anymore!
Contrasting with the above business, this business has been actively listening and responding to their customers. They haven’t only responded to inquiries, but also has appreciated the five seconds the lead/customer has spent on admiring their products! Who wouldn’t love such a quick and satisfactory customer service?
Which type are you? Give it a thought and improve your customer service.
Listening and responding to customers needs to be taken seriously because to THEM it matters, and THEY MATTER TO YOU!