Courtesy Calls: A Guide to Customer Service Fundamentals

Customer service is the assistance provided to the customers by business organizations before, at the time or after the purchase of goods and services. It is the lifeline of any business, and an efficiently managed customer service system contributes a lot in improving the public profile and success of a business.

In this competitive world market, there are many different organizations vying to reach as many customers as possible. To achieve their goals, it’s imperative to provide the best customer services within their means. Organizations offering better customer service are more likely to draw customers in comparison with organizations which perpetually offer poor customer service. Providing the right customer service to the ultimate satisfaction of customer is challenging. The nature of this service varies according to the types of products, industries. and customers. Customer services are provided through help desk counters, toll free phone calls or home service.

Why Does Customer Service Matter?

Customers are valuable assets for any business organization. Without customers, business organizations would obviously cease to exist. Customer service spreads the goodwill of a particular business, helping the business to grow. Customers are very conscious of the services provided to them in relationship to their purchases. Customer satisfaction is pivotal because the impression reflects the efficiency of the organization, which in turn, impacts the business profits.

The more high profile organizations are placing such a high emphasis on the customer relationship that they are implementing advanced technical infrastructure and ERP software system. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) has become an important factor in retailing as well as non-retailing businesses because it helps to build a long term relationship with the customers. Customer feedback constitutes an important factor in Key Performance Indicator (KPI), which gives a measure of the overall business performance.

An efficient customer service imparts a “Feel Good Factor” to the customers, which develops trust and reliability towards a particular brand. The customer feels comfortable about the goods purchased, confident in the knowledge that the services provides by the company would be worthy of the price. No service can be more satisfying to a customer when all his worries and queries are resolved with just a simple phone call or email. It’s extremely important that the customer service personnel be sincere and keen in resolving the customer’s problems as soon as possible, even if the customer is absolutely rude and unreasonable. A psychological attachment develops between the customer and the vendor through the implementation of a prompt and efficient customer service system.

Customer Service Fundamentals

Customer service should be considered an integral part of the business. Its contribution to business profitability is no less than the other functional units. Every business organization should maintain the ten basic rules to develop an efficient customer service.

Improving Customer Service

Customer service can be improved remarkably through little adjustments and applying common sense without involving huge cost. Communicating with the customers in informal tones and wishing them well often raises the comfort level of the customer. It eases out the difficulties in customer handling. Customer feedbacks should be considered seriously, and necessary amendments should be made.

It’s important to keep an updated database of customers with their names, e-mail addresses, phone numbers, and so on. While selling a product, it’s wise to keep the expectation level of the customer low and deliver something more than promised.

One keystone of good customer service that is often overlooked is the training and morale of the customer service representatives. Regular meetings with the service personnel should be arranged to develop new strategies and rectify the drawbacks. Perks and incentives should be awarded to the customer service staff to lift their morale and drive them to take more initiatives in customer satisfaction.

Resources

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