Improving customer service will also improve an organisation's reputation. Customers do not want to wait, be ignored or made to feel unimportant when they buy products. The company's revenue suffers when customers are unhappy with its service. Improve an organisation's reputation by providing and implementing policies, procedures and training for employees on how to provide better customer service. Hire employees who are customer-oriented and enjoy working with people.
- Skill level:
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Train all employees to give high-quality service. Develop procedures for answering the phone, greeting customers and handling complaints. Greet customers with a smile in person and on the phone.
Reduce customers' waiting time. Analyse how long customers of your organisation wait to get service. Shorten the waiting time by providing enough staff to cover phone calls, walk-in customers and sales. Make courtesy calls to let customers know when they can expect their delivery or service. Implement a two-hour window for customers waiting for deliveries and service calls.
Write return policies and warranties. Make it clear to customers before they purchase what type of return policy you observe. Post the return policy on the customer sales receipt and on a sign by the customer service station.
Solve problems with speed and efficiency. Ask customers questions and listen carefully to them. Clearly state what procedures will be followed to satisfy a customer's problem. Offer solutions to remedy problems.
Answer the phone by the third ring. Speak with a cheerful, helpful attitude when answering the phone. Listen to the customer and direct his concerns to the proper department. Be courteous and acknowledge the caller's problems.
Give a small gift or discount for any inconvenience that your organisation has caused a customer. Apologise for mistakes the company may have made. Follow up after the complaint with a phone call or letter and ask if the customer is now satisfied.
Conduct a survey to analyse customer service. Log complaints and track trends from the customers. Analyse the complaints. Look for patterns and then solutions to those complaints.
Keep your technology up to date. Post to your website immediately if there are problems with a product. Provide contact information on all websites and e-mails. Answer e-mails daily.
Tips and warnings
- Send thank-you cards or e-mails to thank customers.
- Offer free coffee or discount coupons to your customers.
- Greet customers by name.
- Send birthday greetings to regular customers.
- Hold customer appreciation sales.
- Offer more than the customer expects.
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