Every business knows how critical customer service is for the success of its brand. Customer service can, in fact, make or break a business. A brand’s engagement with its customers doesn’t end with sales, but continues throughout the product’s lifecycle.
The risk of product failure is dramatically reduced when brands strive to understand the voice of the customer and design products in accordance with the preferences of the customers.
In this article, we will attempt to define customer service, explore some tools for handling customer service, and see how businesses can benefit from efficient customer management.
Understanding Customer Service
Customer service includes all activities, strategies, and processes through which a business engages with its customers throughout the lifecycle of its products and services. This includes assistance to customers across touchpoints in their journeys. Brands need to support customers when they’re making product purchases, providing them with adequate and accurate information about products and also resolving issues they face, if any, on a priority basis.
Customers often have queries and concerns that begin right in the product search and buying phases. If a brand can be proactive enough to approach customers right from this stage, it will lead to a strong customer-brand relationship and higher customer satisfaction rates.
Customer service also helps bolster brand loyalty. It’s imperative to establish positive experiences for customers before and after-sales. This will ensure customers have all information to use products and services in an intended manner.
Customers also often need technical support and assistance with their grievances and complaints, which is an integral component of customer service. It’s important for brands to handle product returns and exchanges in an efficient and timely manner to make the experience as seamless and hassle-free as possible for their customers.
The Right Customer Service Tools
Brands should consider offering personalized suggestions and recommendations to their customers based on their preferences. Responsive communication across touchpoints including social, email, web, and mobile can go a long way.
Businesses should use helpdesk software to simplify customer support with centralized management of all queries. Brands can track all complaints, and support tickets, and respond to them within deadlines.
Social listening tools can help businesses monitor customer feedback on diverse social platforms. Customer complaints and inquiries on social media should be promptly addressed.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software helps businesses to track all customer information at a single place. They’re also great at providing insights about customer behavior using AI. CRM tools help establish personalized communication with customers.
Knowledge-based software can be used to create knowledge bases and central portals for customers to discover relevant information themselves.
The Era of Holistic Customer Service
Too many brands make the mistake of relegating customer experience to just the after-sales engagement. Customer service begins right at the time of customer purchases and continues through the product lifecycle.
It is imperative for brands to monitor customer conversations and stay abreast of their requirements.