Chapter 2: Why customer service is important to growing your business.
These days it takes more than a great idea, some capital, and a ping-pong table to get a new business off the ground. Great customer service needs to be a part of your company DNA from day one.
Why is customer service so important? It can be the difference between a hot IPO and just keeping the lights on. Providing great customer service can generate more marketing and sales opportunities. So meeting your customers’ satisfaction is paramount to keeping your business growing successfully.
Here are five more reasons why customer service is important to your business:
Customer support isn’t just about retaining customers. It’s also an effective way to increase sales. It’s not just your existing customers who have questions — your prospects do too. It’s been reported that 52% of customers will abandon online purchases if they can’t find the information they’re looking for. Provide online support or easy ways for your reps to get the answers they are looking for. Save your sale by getting customers and prospects the information they need, when they need it.
It’s an oft-quoted statistic that acquiring customers costs 6–7x more than retaining your existing ones. For small businesses, with limited time and resources, customer satisfaction is even more important. You simply can’t afford churn. The U.S. Small Business Administration reports that 68% of customers leave because they’re upset with the treatment they've received. That’s why offering fast, helpful customer service is critical to retaining customers. Not to mention that happy customers and word of mouth can also be some of the most effective drivers for new business.
Find opportunities to cross-sell and upsell.
Your current customers can be one of your best sources of business. When you connect all of your support channels and the apps you use to run your business, like a customer relationship management (CRM) app, everyone at your company can be in the know about customers. Support agents can see order histories, open opportunities, and shipping status. Sales knows when a customer needs help. When you share customer information, product insights, and support metrics across the company, not only can everyone be more productive and do a better job of building relationships, but you can uncover opportunities to cross-sell and upsell customers.
Improve the products and services you offer.
Whether you have three people or 30 on your support team, they’re a crucial link to the outside world. Unlike product management or marketing teams — which only talk to customers from time to time — your agents talk to real customers every single day. A good customer service application coupled with a CRM system will gather information from a huge variety of sources across your business and beyond. It can tell you how customers are interacting with your product and if they’re having problems. We can’t underscore the importance of your product decisions and how they impact customer service. If you categorise your cases carefully, you can see what modifications and features customers would like to see in your product or what the biggest pain points are. These customer service insights are crucial in driving the most critically important product decisions.
Make better business decisions.
Your customer service tools can help you do more than just support customers. They can help you improve virtually every aspect of your business. Data from your help desk lets you see how your agents are performing and provides indicators for optimising your support team. Your help desk can also provide an overview of CSAT (customer satisfaction) scores and customer health indicators. Or track the most requested customer features. When you look at a help desk solution, make sure it’s easy to get the insights you need to make faster, smarter decisions.