Since a company’s most vital asset is its customers, great customer service plays an integral role in operating a successful business. Without customers, your business simply would not and could not exist. However, when your customers are happy with your goods and services, they help your business grow by returning to you and recommending your business to their family and friends.
Below are the Ten Commandments of customer service that will ensure your customer service specialists provide first-class support to all of your potential and current customers.
The Ten Commandments of Customer Service
1. Thou Shalt Know Who Is Boss: Whether you are helping an unsatisfied customer, answering billing questions, or providing more product information, you are in business to serve customers’ needs. However, you can only accomplish this task if you know what your customer wants. When you truly listen to your customers, you will understand their wants and needs and know how to provide them with the best customer service. Always remember that your customers pay your salary and make your job possible.
2. Thou Shalt Be a Great Listener: Take the time to identify your customers’ needs by asking questions and concentrating on what they are really saying. Listen to their tone of voice to figure out how they are feeling so you know exactly how to respond. Most importantly, do not make assumptions and think that you intuitively know what the customer wants.
3. Remember to Identify and Anticipate Needs: Customers do not buy products or services. They buy good feelings and solutions to problems. Most customers’ needs are emotional rather than logical and the more you know your customers, the better you become at anticipating their needs. Communicate regularly so you are aware of the problems and needs of your target market.
4. Honor Customers and Make Them Feel Important and Appreciated: Treat each customer as an individual. Always use his or her name and find ways to compliment them while being sincere. You will find that even with the angriest customer, kindness will go a long way. It generates trust and good feelings. Customers, especially those who call with a complaint, are sensitive and will sense whether you really care about their problem. Lastly, always remember to thank them every chance you get.
5. Thou Shalt Help Customers Understand Your Credit Card Processing System: Even if your business has the most efficient method processing credit cards, you customers may not understand it. This can create confusion and cause customers to become impatient and angry. Take the time to explain how your credit card processing system works and how you use it to simply transactions.
6. Thou Shalt Apologize: When a customer feels like your business has wronged them, apologize—sincerely. It is a simple gesture and customers appreciate it. Even if the customer is not right, you must do your best to make them happy again, because a happy customer is a returning customer who will recommend you to family and friends. Try to resolve problems as quick as possible to minimize frustration and explain to the customer what you have done.
7. Thou Shalt Appreciate the Power of Yes: You do not need me to tell you this, but always look for a way to help your customers. If they have a reasonable request, tell them, “Yes, I can do that for you.” Even if you do not know how to fulfill the request at the time of saying yes, figure out how afterward. Your goal is to make it easy for customers to do business with your company easily. Most importantly, always follow through with your promises.
8. Thou Shalt Give More than Expected: Since the future of your business lies in the happiness of your customers, think of creative ways to elevate your company above your competition. Some ideas include:
- Sell a product or service customers can only get at your store.
- Reach out and thank customers even when they do not complete a purchase.
- Have a sale on special items just to make customers happy.
- Provide free shipping during a non-holiday season just because you appreciate your customers.
9. Thou Shalt Ask for Feedback: Encourage your customers to provide suggestions, comments, and feedback on how to improve your business. You can ask for feedback on how easy it was to navigate your e-commerce website, the quality of the goods or services they received, or even the shipping process. Value customer complaints, because they give your business an opportunity to grow and improve.
10. Thou Shalt Treat Employees Well: Treating your employees well is as equally important as treating your customers well. As a business owner, your employees are like customers and deserve a regular dose of appreciation. Thank them for their hard work and find ways to show them how important they are to you and your business. Treat your employees with respect and they will undoubtedly have a higher regard for your customers.