Great customer service is a core part of a successful company. It is
essential for gaining and retaining customers, building brand trust and
loyalty, and keeping customers satisfied. The foundation for this is
effective communication in the day-to-day interactions with customers
to answer their questions about the products or services of a company.
In addition to this, customer service also helps to improve the
offerings of the business through capturing customer feedback. Below,
I cover some of the essential customer service communication skills
for agents to have for building an effective customer service team. You can incorporate these techniques into your agent training and watch your customer satisfaction grow!
One of the most crucial skills of a customer service agent is the use of
positive language and tonality. When communicating via phone or
online, it is important to maintain a calm and friendly demeanor,
whether it is to help a customer to decide on a purchase or for
resolving a problem. If an agent does not have an answer, using a
negative phrase such as “I don’t know”, can frustrate a customer.
Instead, the agent can affirm that they understand the situation and
will look for a solution.
Putting a Smile in Your Voice
Customers can hear it when an agent has a smile in their voice. Just
as during in-person interactions, a smile at appropriate times can
communicate warmth and friendliness. A great way for agents to
practice this is to add mirrors to their work stations and to check their
facial expressions in the mirrors occasionally.
Showing Customers That They Are Being Heard
Showing a customer that they are being heard is one of the most
important aspects of providing great service. Here are some ways to
demonstrate this to customers:
- Before offering a solution, practice active listening by first listening closely and fully to the customer’s situation. Avoid interrupting.
- If anything is not clear about the customer’s explanation, ask them questions to uncover any missing information.
- Summarize the problem and what you will do to help.
Being Mindful of the Customer’s Time
Whether communicating online or via phone with customers, agents
need to be mindful of the customer’s time so that they remain satisfied
and do not lose their patience. This means balancing being thorough
and concise. Here are some tips:
- Train agents on the most efficient ways to locate and present
- information to customers.
- Set customer expectations for how long they will be on hold and
- approximate time to resolve their problem.
- Prioritize and answer email inquiries in a timely manner. Make sure
- that email messages are clear and concise.
Customizing the Experience
To create an authentic customer service experience, agents can
customize the experience while staying within company guidelines. For
example, when replying to customers through email, templates can be
used for questions that need to be answered for customers on a
regular basis; However, these templates can be customized for various
situations. Personalized customer service makes customers feel more connected to a brand and increases sales. In the Forbes article “Personalized Customer Experience Increases Revenue And Loyalty”, Shep Hyken notes that a personalized customer experience:
- Drives impulse purchases
- Increases revenue
- Leads to fewer returns
- Increases loyalty
In what ways do you create a personalized experience for your
Are you looking to improve the customer service communication skills of
agents in any of the areas mentioned above? CH Consulting Group provides unparalleled expertise in the Contact Center and Customer Experience (CX) verticals. We have a nationwide team of industry veterans that can assist you to achieve exponential growth, manage change, and generate profit. For a comprehensive CX assessment and strategic plan customized for your unique business needs, connect with us here today.