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‘Easy’ Customer Service: What Does That Mean, Anyway?

‘Easy’ Customer Service: What Does That Mean, Anyway?

Master the steps we’ve outlined in this post to redefine your customer service experience, however, and you might find identifying and recruiting customer ambassadors a lot smoother -- maybe even easy.

Turning to customer service might begin, for example, with having to figure out the best way to reach a company to ask for help. It might mean having to provide details about a purchase or other information that you simply don’t have handy at the time. It also might mean a lot of waiting, whether it’s being on hold with a contact centre, wondering when you’ll get a reply to your email or simply being told to stand by while the company finds the right person to address your question.

One of the reasons customers find themselves in these kinds of situations is that companies often base their process for handling service and support issues on what works best for them. This can include the budget they have to allocate resources to customer service, the number of people they can hire, the volume of inquiries they feel prepared to handle and so on. They may sympathize when customers feel frustrated, but sometimes they essentially shrug their shoulders with an air of “That’s the way it is” resignation.

This, of course, is completely at odds with how customers actually feel when they’re encountering a service issue. They’ve given the company money and expect to get assistance when the time comes. They don’t want to learn how the company’s processes and procedures work. They want things to happen quickly.

In other words, they want customer service to be easy.

Don’t make the mistake of suggesting to customers that getting the service they need is, in fact, easy, as long as they _______. No matter what you use to fill in that blank, it doesn’t matter. If a customer has reached the point where you need to explain how to jump through a particular hoop, they already feel your customer service process is hard.

Instead here are a few key factors that will help your customers feel like your process is easy:

Easy customer service means . . . all doors are open (and lead to the right destination)

You may offer customer service through a 1-800 number and an email address. That’s great, but “easy” means you also offer help through text messages, social media and via chatbots on your website.

It also means that there’s no hierarchy or difference between the quality of service you offer through one channel versus another. Availability and consistency go hand-in-hand.

Easy customer service means . . . you were expecting them (and recognize them)

Companies deal with many of the same questions and troubleshooting issues over and over again. Using predictive intelligence technology, the best companies find ways to automate the remediation of the most common questions from their customers.

Also, making it easy in this case means doing your homework prior to the customer interaction. In other words, your agents have the most critical information about the customer on their screen from the moment they connect with you so that you spend more time helping them out.

Easy customer service means . . . you act without being asked

Customer service is often reactive, but it doesn’t have to be. Think of a situation where it becomes clear there’s a bug or snag of some sort in your product that will impact customers. Rather than waiting for the calls, emails or social media posts, many companies are realizing they can get ahead of the market.

This could involve sending out a personalized email to customers with advice on how to avoid problems, a short video you share on social media or even a call to check in and make sure customers are prepared. You’re literally making their lives easier before they even realize a problem could exist.

Easy customer service means . . . you understand what ‘success’ means

Customers want the products they purchase to do more than work, they want to use the products to accomplish something. These accomplishments likely ladder back to a goal that’s important to their company’s strategic direction. This is where service becomes less of a quick-fix effort and more of an experience that provides lasting value — and cements strong relationships.

Easy customer service means . . . the testimonials come naturally

There are lots of great ways to measure the performance of your customer service efforts, but one of the best is the extent to which you’re driving advocacy. In other words, how likely are customers to speak well of you to other people who might also become customers?

Master the steps we’ve outlined in this post to redefine your customer service experience, however, and you might find identifying and recruiting customer ambassadors a lot smoother — maybe even easy.

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