With so many things to juggle in their personal and professional lives, your customers are always searching for the easiest way to accomplish their tasks. This includes reaching out to your company if they have concerns with the products or services they’ve ordered from you.
Enter, one of their biggest nightmares: calling your customer service hotline.
There’s probably not a single person who would willingly carve half an hour of their time to call customer support only to be put on hold. The dreaded on-hold music is often made worse when callers find out that they’ve been connected to the wrong department, or that the agent doesn’t have an immediate solution for the problem they called about.
Unfortunately, no matter how diligently you serve your customers, this kind of scenario already plays out in their minds. People dread having to call for support, with 59% refraining from calling as much as possible.
As a business owner, it’s your job to provide flawless customer service. One of the easiest ways to do this is to look into the underlying reasons why calling customer service centers is such a dreaded scenario. From here, you can devise ways to improve their overall experience.
Again, your customers are now living in a world where they expect service to be quick and hassle-free. Calling for support takes a lot of time—time that people don’t like wasting.
Having only one customer service portal does not help. If your customer support is only accessible through a hotline, your customers have no other options but to ring you every time they need help. Your customer service agents might not be prepared for the volume of people they have to entertain.
Diversifying your customer service touchpoints is the best solution. Offer email, chatbots, and social media accounts and encourage your users to reach you on different platforms.
As for your customer service reps on the phone, train them to lower their average handling time so they can quickly find customer account information, and provide solutions. Last but not least, offer a callback option so your agents can schedule a convenient time to follow up on a solution they may not have access to at the moment.
While having an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) on your customer service hotline is great, some are poorly designed or hard to follow. There might be too many options, too many details they need to enter (account numbers, names, etc.), or they might not know which to choose for their specific concerns.
This could result in being led to the wrong department, waiting even longer on the phone, or your customers just giving up because they can’t seem to figure you out.
Redesign your IVR and have a test group give feedback on its ease of use. You can also provide a unified customer support system with easy-to-understand menus and an option to talk straight to an available agent for bigger concerns.
Say your IVR led the customer to the wrong department, then the customer is transferred to the right one. But now the customer is being asked to repeat their concerns all over again!
Such a scenario can still happen even when the customer is in the right department. When the attending agent transfers a customer to a senior with more know-how on the issue, he or she is asked to repeat the concern. This can be very frustrating to callers as they are already in a bad mood before the call (hence their need for support).
Have your reps type quick notes or summaries about the issue as they transfer the customer to the next agent. This gives the next agent time to familiarize themselves with the incoming concern and provide a solution more quickly, speeding up the whole process.
It can be confusing for your customers when every time they call to follow-up on their concern, they hear different solutions from different agents. This can feel like they’re going around in circles and that they’re talking to a clueless rep.
Train your agents based on uniform steps that are strictly enforced across the entire business unit. Collect data from your ticketing systems and tally issues that seem to be popping up more frequently than others, and design specialized protocol for dealing with these kinds of problems. Know what your customers are complaining about and be sure to provide tangible solutions that allow them to avoid running into it again.
Put yourself in your customers’ shoes: there’s probably no greater pain than going through all the steps and finally talking to an agent, when all of a sudden, they hear the dial tone. This can discourage your customers from calling again since they have to do everything from square one. Automatic hang-ups are a sign of high inbound call volumes or something more technical like uncontrollable bad signal reception.
Give your customer service reps the authority to make outbound calls. If you know about the poor reception, train your agents to ask for a contact number where they can reach the caller in case the line gets cut. That way, they can get back to the concern with no further hassle for the consumer.
In this customer-centric world, it’s incredibly crucial to put your clients first! Without them, your business would not be up and running. Terrible customer service can cost you sales, so be wary of the things you need to improve on or fix.
If you’re looking for a professional and long-term solution for your customer service woes, consider customer service outsourcing to SuperStaff. SuperStaff has the experience and expertise on how to best deal with your beloved customers, from the solutions suggested above to providing you innovative solutions for your business. Contact us now!
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