Getting The Habit Of Outstanding Customer Service

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customer-serviceIf the old adage ‘The customer is always right’ holds true in today’s consumer-focused industries, it stands to reason that outstanding customer service should lie at the heart of any business.

Whether you deal with customers over the internet or regularly come in contact face-to-face with the public, customer service is of paramount importance when it comes to you and the success of your business.

With today’s hectic jobs, a massive list of things to do and the constant drive to deliver results in double-quick time, it can sometimes be easy to neglect your customers.

The problem is, many of the tasks we do depend upon good customer service to meet business objectives, and letting this element of your business slip for even a moment can be disastrous.

If you have spent a long time building up great customer relationships over the course of your business, it makes sense to look after these contacts and make sure they feel cared about, regardless of what else you have to do.

The following tips will go a long way towards reminding you to put your customers first, even if at times it feels like the last thing you want to spend your time doing…

Keep Them Updated

There is nothing more frustrating for a customer than having no idea what is going on, when they are trying to contact a company. It’s important to make sure your customers are always briefed in terms of what you are up to, and when they can expect you to action their requirements.

Respond To Queries

It’s not always possible to resolve or answer all queries which come through to your business immediately.

However, rather than trying to deal with everything at once, it makes sense to provide acknowledgement of their question or query and when they can expect a more detailed response.

This can pre-empt any disgruntled customers from getting in touch, and keep people happy that at least you have acknowledged their request.

Stay Accessible

If you have recently been through the torture of getting put on hold, trying to get through to a company representative, you’ll recall just how quickly this can put you in the worst of tempers.

Making yourself accessible to your customers adds a personal touch to your dealings with them, giving yourself an ideal opportunity to resolve issues, respond to queries and maintain a positive ongoing relationship.

Ask For Feedback

Without a doubt, the best way of knowing whether your customer service is up to scratch is to simply ask your customers.

No one minds being asked their opinion, and gaining a first-hand account of how you and your business are doing will form the foundation for future great relationships.

What do you have in place that ensures great customer service?

What do you look for…when it comes to great customer service?

Please share your views in the comments below.

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15 Responses to Getting The Habit Of Outstanding Customer Service

  1. Ryan Biddulph February 4, 2011 at 6:48 pm #

    Hi Andrew,

    Excellent post and so important if you plan to get your customer service game in gear.

    I engage frequently. Ask questions, listen for feedback. Most of all I keep in touch. The “getting updates from left field” type of deal where customers aren’t kept in the loop is a tough one for most to swallow.

    I intend to be mindful too. I was put on hold before I could respond speaking to a customer service rep yesterday. Since I’m even keel I didn’t get angry but did note it, and made sure to be mindful of it for my own business.

    You can’t develop outstanding customer service unless you are mindful. Practice being in the moment to listen to what your customer is really saying, for the really important information is all about the subtle stuff; pauses, hesitations, feelings, etc.

    Thanks for sharing your exceptional customer service insight. Enjoy your day Andrew.

    RB
    Ryan Biddulph recently posted..4 Easy Ways to Market Like a Complete DingbatMy Profile

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      February 6, 2011 at 3:10 pm #

      Ryan,

      I think a lot of people THINK providing excellent customer service is easy.

      Customers are becoming more and more demanding (and rightly so!) which means providing excellent service has to be the norm.

      “Good enough” is no longer good enough.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..Improve Your Blog SpeedMy Profile

  2. Alex February 5, 2011 at 10:45 pm #

    Hey Andrew,

    From a customer perspective I always want for a company I pay for their services to always be accessible and sensible to my needs(you know every customer has to think they are the only ones that exist for the company).

    Also, I don’t want to be up-selled services or extra packages just because they want more money, I want their recommendation because they think it can improve my life or confort (I just hate when companies try to upsell something when they know that it wont benefit me at all).
    Alex recently posted..Impuscaturi in minaMy Profile

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      February 6, 2011 at 3:11 pm #

      Alex,

      Ecellent point about the upsell side of things.

      I’ve often put off clients buying my services as I don’t think they have needed them.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..Improve Your Blog SpeedMy Profile

  3. Extreme John February 7, 2011 at 3:43 pm #

    Asking for feedback is a big one and reacting to that is the key to it being successful feedback capturing. Great tips, customer service is the future for small businesses at this stage of the economy.
    Extreme John recently posted..How Using Twitter Landed My Business on a Reality TV ShowMy Profile

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      February 10, 2011 at 9:42 am #

      So right, John.

      If you do ask for feedback, you have to act on it.

      I know many who ask and then don’t act.

      They don’t believe the feedback or think the customer is wrong. In some cases they may be but if many customers are saying the same thing…then it is time to make changes.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..Blog Speed- How To Measure ItMy Profile

  4. pravakar February 7, 2011 at 5:12 pm #

    Great post. As business manger i always give new update technique to my client.but after reading your blog i will give more stress about your facts
    pravakar recently posted..Writing Tips For Great Blog Comments that Obtain AcceptedMy Profile

  5. TechChunks February 8, 2011 at 9:54 am #

    As my ex-SEO would put it — being responsive, taking the ownership of the issue and coming up with a quick solution is the key to successful customer service efforts!
    TechChunks recently posted..Top 5 Plug-ins To Navigate Mozilla Firefox Like a Pro With Mouse GesturesMy Profile

  6. Delena Silverfox February 8, 2011 at 6:08 am #

    Customer service is so crucial! In this day and age, everything can be seen as customer service whether you actually work in a traditional service niche or not. It’s about connecting with people and treating them with respect and consideration.

    Especially with the people having bad days, or not feeling quite so cooperative, this can be challenging!

    Delena
    Delena Silverfox recently posted..iContact Coupon CodeMy Profile

  7. Jeremy June 17, 2011 at 2:03 am #

    Good stuff here. While all of these aspects help you achieve great customer service, I am reminded of how I was taught in my days of working produce at the grocery store:

    “Superior customer service is giving the individual BETTER service than what they expect to receive from you”

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