Strategies to Improve Customer Service

Every brand thinks that its customer support is outstanding. Customer service across brands, however, is mediocre in practise. Generally, the experience is inconvenient, uncomfortable, unsatisfactory, often humiliating and certainly costly. Have a look at Chatbots.

An integral part of business is strong customer service. It affects major brand and company goals, such as customer satisfaction , loyalty, retention, repeat buying, sales and use revenue. There is constant pressure on brands to change the perceptions of their service by consumers in view of these market implications.

It should not be that hard to enhance client support. If companies rethink their business practises, it can happen. To enhance customer service, in my view, the following eight techniques are very important:

(1) Integration in business planning: The quantity and quality of service requirements depend on the activities of many other functions. Organizations can integrate the service needs of consumers into all facets of business operations, such as product design, sourcing , manufacturing, handling, pricing, communication, people , and culture. This will allow companies to properly plan for service eventualities and, at the same time , make the whole company responsible for customer service.

2) Shift service attitude: Despite being a vital business operation, the role of customer service does not have the same respect as many other functions. It is viewed by many as filthy, menial, and unpleasant. The appearance and resources of the service centre are often far inferior, especially to those of sales and marketing. If the service function is handled in this manner by an agency, clients are likely to get the same care from the service function.

The service attitude of the company reflects its attitude towards customers. If the majority of the company has to value customer service and clients, management has to go far beyond delivering mere lip service.

3) Align with marketing: An essential marketing resource is clients. They are the most reliable brand ambassadors, much more effective than all other marketing efforts put together, their word of mouth recommendation is much more successful. Organizations should make marketing exclusively responsible for customer service in view of its relevance to marketing and, if possible, create a separate customer marketing role to secure, cultivate and exploit their core assets (customers) even more productively. Integrating it with core marketing would eliminate the service-related stigma as well.

4) Shed the approach to the profit centre: Most companies aim to make a profit through customer service. In a profit centre strategy, revenue-generating activities such as maintenance contract sales, spares, and costly call charges are becoming more important than the business goals listed above. Selling at low margins is usually the explanation for the approach to the profit centre. Anyway, attempting to raise profit via service will not work as clients expect service charges to be low if the selling price of the commodity was low. Expensive service rates will also push consumers to select cheaper service providers from third parties.

The only aim of the customer service role should be brand and business goals. In the short and long term, the collective benefit of these market initiatives will often be greater than the profits generated from regular service operations. A benefit centre or cost centre policy will be harmful to the brand, disregarding business goals.