Delivering excellent customer experiences is key to the success of your business. If customers are unhappy with the service they’re receiving, they’ll leave.
Forbes research shows a huge 96% of customers would consider leaving your business if they receive bad customer service. Good customer experiences, meanwhile, can boost customer retention and your profits.
Sometimes, delivering good customer service means eliminating the bad experiences that happen regularly. Awaken Intelligence research has identified the top frustrations for customers – here, customer service specialist Kura offers expert tips on how your business can overcome the top five customer complaints to improve your customer experiences.
Not being able to speak to a human
The worst thing you can do for your customers is preventing them from speaking to a real advisor. In a digital world of intelligent self-service solutions, it can be all too tempting to implement technologies in place of real human advisors. But this is a mistake.
While self-service options and chatbots can enhance your customer service, they shouldn’t be the only available channels of communication. If customers have a complex query they may need to speak to a person. It can be frustrating for them to be sent in circles on your website when they want a resolution.
To mitigate this, you could use a chatbot as the first interaction on your website. That way, they will guide customers through questions to get to the root of frequently asked queries. If the bot is unable to provide the right answer, the customer can be transferred to a live chat advisor for further support.
Long wait times
It’s unsurprising that long waiting times is a big annoyance for customers. Sometimes, this is unavoidable – for example, energy and housing companies have been dealing with increased enquiries during the recent storms hitting the UK. But if your customers are consistently waiting a long time to get in touch with you on the phone, via email, or via chat, that’s bad service.
Research has shown that almost a fifth of customers will give up on calls altogether due to long waiting times. Therefore, it’s vital to hire enough people to cope with your customers’ needs and demands. If your data is showing that customers are often waiting to get through to you for a long time, you may not have enough advisors to cope with demand.
For some businesses, hiring a sufficient number of employees may be difficult, so you might want to consider customer service outsourcing. The benefits of outsourcing mean you can increase your employee count without incurring steep costs. This will allow you to meet customer demand, thereby improving customer satisfaction.
Advisors taking too long to solve queries or not being knowledgeable
Once your customers have got through to you, more hold-ups can cause them frustration. Advisors taking a long time to resolve queries is the third biggest complaint of customers. This can be caused by a number of issues, from slow systems to limited escalation options and poor employee knowledge – this final point was also cited as a related concern.
Training employees before they start on the phones is important, but it’s also essential for them to have knowledge at hand while on the phones. A week or two of intensive training will set your people up for success, but they can forget some of their learnings. A solid knowledge base is essential, but your people may also benefit from materials that guide them through customer queries.
Scripted or impersonal conversations
Guided forms that allow your advisors to take customers through their queries or issues will help your people resolve issues faster. But it’s important that these aren’t treated as scripts, because scripted conversations annoy customers.
If an advisor is reading through a script, their interactions with customers will be stunted, and it’s often easy to tell when it happens. Instead, advisors should be given prompts to stimulate conversation and obtain key information from customers. Scripts may have a place when it comes to training and consistent interactions, but rigid scripting won’t keep your customers happy.
Being transferred between multiple departments
Being transferred from department to department, whether on the phone or online, is a huge frustration for customers. This becomes even more infuriating for customers when their information isn’t relayed between departments, meaning they have to explain their query or issue repeatedly.
Sometimes, transferring customers between departments is unavoidable. At the very least, businesses should have ways of transmitting the information already provided by the customer between departments so they can get up to speed on the customer’s enquiry without making the customer responsible for explaining once again.
Having advisors who can deal with queries on a multitude of topics across all departments will also help resolve this issue. This is where an outsourced contact centre can once again come in, filling in the gaps in your people’s knowledge. These businesses will have highly trained experts who are experienced in delivering customer service across all departments. This means your business doesn’t need to spend valuable time training your team on cross-departmental queries.
Customer service can make or break your business. Good experiences can increase customer loyalty and retention, while bad ones can drive customers away. In order to deliver excellent customer service, you first need to address the common complaints of your customers. By ensuring your customers aren’t waiting around for a long time, are dealing with knowledgeable advisors, and can always reach a human, you’ll be able to vastly improve the service you deliver to them.