The Best Practices for Customer Service

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Good customer service practices are essential to achieving customer satisfaction and building customer loyalty in every industry and market. Investing in an extraordinary customer service team can quickly pay off as you increase your customer base and enjoy repeat business. Improve the customer service performance of your business by hiring talented people, giving extensive employee training, establishing clear guidelines and giving employees more freedom. Additionally, correct mistakes immediately, follow up on customers and get customer feedback.

Hire and Train Talented People

Build the foundation for your customer service performance by hiring talented people. Customer service representatives should be warm, personable, intelligent and reliable. Still, don't rely on their personalities; train your employees how to react in every possible situation. Customer service training should include becoming familiar with the customer service guidelines and role-playing different situations.

Clearly Define Guidelines

Define customer service guidelines clearly so your employees can confidently communicate in an authoritative way with your customers. Train your employees to be cheerful in telling your customers what they can do for them, rather than focusing on what they cannot do.

Give Employees More Freedom

Although you should have clear guidelines, give your employees room to react to individual customers. For example, allow them discretion in giving full refunds, partial refunds or to approve other unexpected costs. Allot your customer service employees a certain amount of discretionary money each week or month.

Correct Mistakes Immediately

Mistakes will sometimes happen, and products will not always live up to expectations. Always address mistakes immediately. Prepare not only to refund or replace defective products, but impress dissatisfied customers. Give them an extra discount for their next purchase, a free voucher or a gift card. Find some way to encourage their loyalty and convince them of your commitment to extraordinary performance.

Follow Up With Customers

Don't just assume customers are happy with the resolution of their problem. Check with them afterward to ensure their satisfaction with the outcome. This will show customers you value their business and will help build customer loyalty.

Seek Customer Feedback

Ask your customers how you can improve customer service. Host focus groups, use surveys, or ask your complaint department, if you have one, to define the most common issues. Make sure your investment in customer service actually helps to better serve your customers.

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