The Secret to Provide Excellent Customer Service to Build Your Reputation
The difference between success and failure comes down to customer service.
No field-service company or small business can thrive without an effective and intentional approach to customer service because today’s customers demand it.
Attention spans are short and customers want immediate answers and assistance.
If a business doesn’t meet that expectation, customers simply move on to another business. With that said, business owners have many demands on their time.
Providing excellent customer service is also essential for establishing your reputation to own your neighborhood and turn first-time customers into repeat customers.
And going the extra mile for customers empowers you to collect online reviews and leverage reputation marketing so you can take your small business to the next level.
So how to provide good customer service? Here’s one surefire way to bump your customer service game up to exceptional.
The Most Important Aspect of Customer Service
The most important aspect of customer service is having a system in place to meet—and exceed—customer expectations.
Today’s customer expects an immediate, rapid response.
They may reach out via text, live chat, email, phone or social media. And someone needs to be dedicated to responding, no matter where or when a customer reaches out. Every time.
Often business owners have too many demands on their time to provide prompt responses. So how do you create an exceptional customer service experience?
The Winning Formula to Provide Excellent Customer Service
Here’s the winning formula to deliver exceptional customer service:
- Assign an employee or a team to attend to all customer enquiries.
- Provide customers multiple ways to connect to your business.
- Ensure you give live responses that are meaningful—not canned or bot-generated.
- Follow up on all enquiries and tickets to ensure that customers are truly satisfied.
- Dedicate financial and operational resources to customer service.
Tip #1: Assign Employees Customer-Service Responsibilities
An effective customer-service plan requires assigning someone to manage customer interactions.
That person (or team) will have access to business-operation systems so they know what work is being done and when.
They should be able to answer anything a customer may want to know at any stage of the sales cycle. This person can be on staff or contracted.
And most importantly, this employee’s main job responsibility needs to be fast and empathetic responses.
Here’s one example of how an immediate response makes a difference:
Chances are, when someone searches for a home- or field-service professional, they are in a bind or a moment of need.
In this instance, a potential customer calls due to an emergency with a tree on her property.
The customer-service assistant answers the call right away, gets the details and understands the customer’s needs.
The customer-service assistant determines that the business owner is nearby on a job and arranges the owner to visit the caller’s location.
This happened during one phone call that was answered right away. Here's why this works:
- From the owner’s perspective, business was won and a customer was gained. This is business that would have been lost had the call gone to voicemail instead.
- From the customer’s perspective, her call for help was answered in a moment of need.
An intentional approach to customer service makes all the difference.
Tip #2: Create Multiple Ways for Customers to Contact You
Customer satisfaction is also impacted by a customer’s ability to contact a business when and how they want, at their convenience.
Some people don’t like to make phone calls. Others don’t like email. The successful business offers multiple ways to connect and provides equally great service on all channels.
Tip #3: Provide Live, Meaningful Responses
People need to be greeted by someone who can actually help them; often, automated responses won’t cut it for small businesses.
A good customer-service assistant needs to provide the following specific information:
- What services you offer
- When you can provide an estimate and/or do the job
- The status of the job
The best service is provided by people who can answer all the questions even before people ask.
Your employees need to fully understand your business and know common customer concerns to ensure complete customer satisfaction.
And they absolutely must take the appropriate time to make sure that the business provides a quality level of service.
Tip#4: Collect Feedback to Make Sure Customer Service Is Working
Having an intentional approach to customer service is essential. Taking time to check in with customers so that exceptional customer service is being met is equally important.
Every business should have a plan to ask for customer feedback, either in an informal manner or via formal rating or review.
Businesses can seek feedback at any point in the customer-relationship cycle and should monitor feedback & respond as needed.
Acknowledge what went well, clarify any errors and be authentic in wanting to make every customer experience great.
There’s something to learn any time a customer takes time to report on their experience.
Tip #5: Commit Resources for Customer Service
It's important to set up a system for customer service using the right tools to improve both effectiveness and efficiency.
Here are some recommended tools you can implement in your customer-service stack to sources to help build exceptional customer service:
Pink Callers: Pink Caller connects business owners with customer-service solutions to help answer calls, schedule work and overview accounts receivable.
Jobber: Jobber helps business owners with scheduling, quoting and invoicing.
NiceJob: NiceJob’s software for reputation marketing automates your review process and makes collecting feedback a breeze.
Why Is Good Customer Service Important
Remember, delivering exceptional customer service is more about resolving complaints.
Here are some reasons why customer service is important for growing your business:
- Creating an amazing experience with excellent customer service increases your retention and upsell revenue metrics. Customer service generates future business.
- When you provide great customer service, customers will tell their friends and family about your business when they need a recommendation. Hello referral revenue!
- Delivering 11-star service instead of 5-star service gets you customer reviews, providing social proof and improved website rankings for future sales enablement.
At the end of the day, delivering exceptional customer service is all about acquiring the reputation you deserve. You’re now on your way to more customer reviews!
Check out our guide on how to get customer reviews so you can grow your business to new heights.