Winning Them Over: 5 Tips to Learn off of Skilled Customer Service Reps

Simple customer service tips and skills that are applicable to any client facing role

by Rod Dunne on July 24, 2011

in Biz Dev, Human Side

In today’s competitive business world, it is more important than ever for you to provide excellent customer service.

However, it is something that too many small businesses struggle with.

Fortunately, here are 5 easy tips of customer service skills to keep your business thriving whether you’re in customer support, sales, help desk support services or any role where you get to influence and communicate with customers.

1. Make your customers feel appreciated

One of the first customer service tips is to make sure your customers feel appreciated and valued. It is one of the most successful ways to earn customer loyalty and differentiate yourself from your competitors.

Fun and inexpensive reward programs, raffles, or contests can all help your customers feel like a part of the family.

Always make sure you verbally thank them while doing business, and treat them with respect no matter what. Instigate a customer focus marketing strategy across the entire company.

2. Develop a bespoke service for your individual customer segments

Anticipate their needs and tailor your service accordingly. Customers all have slightly different needs, and taking a one-size-fits-all approach will cause some of them to fall through the cracks.

Instead, identify the reasons why they are seeking out your business, and make sure you fulfill those needs. This is a challenging yet effective way to improve customer service at your business.

If you are a product based company (rather than service orientated) then your product development strategy should feed straight from customer needs identified by your market research.

3. Welcome customer service complaints – And really listen to what problems are out there

Listen, listen, listen! One of the most common customer service complaints is that the sales staff did not listen to them. Avoid this by making sure that you and your employees are skilled listeners.

Take the time to really hear the customer, without letting yourself get distracted. Remember that understanding how to provide excellent customer service has more to do with putting yourself in your customer shoes and satisfying their requirements (i.e. fixing their complaints) than thinking of what’s good for the company. This is a simple way to improve customer service skills in any business.

4. Always focus on positive forward-looking solutions – Not negative blame-ridden dialog

Stay positive. When you are dealing with a difficult customer, it is easy to become flustered or focus on the negative aspects of the situation. In those cases, be sure you are focusing on what you can do to fix the problem rather than focusing on what went wrong.

It is okay and even necessary for you to let an irate customer vent for a bit, but try not to let it run on too long. Let them air their grievances and then you help them come up with a satisfactory solution. This is one of the most important tips of customer service skills.

5. You can always improve customer service skills simply by being honest and upfront

Be humble. When you make a mistake, do not be afraid to own up to it and apologize. Most customers realize that you are only human, and while they might get frustrated, most will be reasonable. A sincere apology goes a long way!

Customer service can be more difficult than it seems, and many businesses struggle with it. By following these 5 tips of customer service you will make your business stand out for all the right reasons

Related posts:
Skills you need: Customer service representatives and client facing staff

Author Rod Dunne...

Blog owner and sole writer Rod DunneI am the owner and sole writer on Product-ivity.com. This is my personal blog detailing troubleshooting tips for small businesses. Posts are based upon 2 decades in consultancy & innovation management within startups/maturing companies.

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