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The expectations of your customers are getting higher and higher. Experts say this is one of the top challenges businesses will face in 2023. And in today’s day and age, you may feel overwhelmed by the number of communication channels and platforms you need to connect with your target audiences. How do you figure out the best way to “show up” to your customer base?
In reality, customer service is what makes or breaks a company. It is the basis for success and growth, something I have personally experienced in my company. Prioritizing customer service remains the best decision I’ve ever made as our cloud-based solution and, more importantly, our workforce are consistently recognized on a regional and national scale for customer service excellence. Our commitment to the customer experience has contributed greatly to our tremendous growth. Below you will find some techniques that we have applied at Rentec Direct and that you can also apply at your company.
Related: The 3 Skills You Need to Build Better Customer Relationships
1. Identify your best communication channels
Communication builds trust with your customers. When you respond quickly, customers feel valued and respected. That is why it is crucial to identify the right communication channels that will resonate most with your specific target group.
You may be surprised to learn that many customers still want the option to speak to a customer service representative over the phone. Talking to someone in real time gives you peace of mind and gives the customer your undivided attention to solve problems together.
For some customers, email may be the most convenient option, as they can ask a question at any time of the day. Chat is also great for one-off requests that don’t require much explanation. It allows customers to get their questions answered in real time, and it’s usually faster than an email response.
At my company, every phone call, email, chat, and support ticket is personally addressed, and we guarantee a same-day response if received during business hours. We’ve found that this added value for your customers helps us stand out in a space where competitors value less personal connection with their customers or charge more for personal customer service.
Related: 5 strategies to get customers to trust your brand
2. Empower your employees
Employees are a company’s greatest asset. It is important to provide your employees with training and education on the values, products and services of your company and your industry as a whole. They are on the front line when customers have questions or need information. They are responsible for upholding your brand’s reputation.
When employees are happy and engaged at work, and also have the right training and resources, they will confidently take on any challenge that comes their way. This is how you gain trust with your customers, which builds reputation and loyalty. All of my customer service team members have industry related experience in real estate or finance, so they really understand our client’s needs.
3. Provide learning resources
Your customers are likely to have questions all hours of the day, and perhaps at night, when your team may be unavailable. An educational database is helpful in making sure your customers get the information they need.
We provide a variety of educational resources such as video tutorials, webinars, blogs and other materials for our property managers and landlords. Given their busy schedules, they need to access resources on demand. It’s a great way to make sure customers feel supported and have access to important tools after hours.
We also provide free onboarding support to all our new software customers and timely share real estate news, trends and advice on our website, blog and in industry publications to spread information and knowledge far and wide.
Related: 12 ways to provide excellent customer service
4. Give your customers the time they deserve
Customers deserve your undivided attention, regardless of the question or situation. It’s important to take the time to understand and respond to your customer’s needs rather than sticking to traditional cell center metrics like quotas and call times.
By taking the time to listen to your customers’ needs and preferences, you have the tools and information to identify opportunities for growth and innovation. It can also help you develop new products and services to meet your customers’ needs. Handling all customer support in-house versus referring to a third party has worked well for us as it makes our service faster and more personal.
Providing excellent customer service is critical to any business that wants to succeed. Focusing your efforts on effective communication, employee training, and resource development will help you achieve your goals. Make it a point to listen to your customer’s needs, and you can improve customer loyalty and drive business growth. Growing a business can be hard work, but if you prioritize and build your business with customer service at the center, you’ll reap the rewards.