Your company is only as good as your client’s support call. Does that sound like hyperbole? Think again – over the last four years, an average of 46.75% of clients left a company due to bad service. All it takes is one bad experience to scare them off.
If you don’t provide the technical customer support your customers require, they’ll find a company that will.
How do you improve your company’s service? That’s the question we asked leading service industry experts. They helped us to narrow down the top five tips every technical customer support team should implement. Are you ready to see how your service measures up?
Choose a Team With the Correct Skills
Regular and technical customer support seem similar. This is misleading, however. Technical support aims to help the client get the best use out of the product. A standard consultant might need to track an order or send copies of statements.
The point is that you require two different sets of skills. Your technical customer support team must:
· Be adept at problem-solving
· Understand the complexity of your product and potential stumbling blocks
· Be excellent communicators
· Use positive language without any jargon – 68% of clients say the customer experience depends on the consultant being polite and positive.
· Be patient and able to empathize with the client
Create an Outstanding Knowledge Base
Providing an extensive, easy-to-search knowledge base is the first step in providing technical support. Doing so provides your clients the opportunity to find the answer to their problems on their own. The database also provides a valuable resource for your technical team.
Setting up the information will take time, but it’s well worth it. Create a section of Frequently Asked Questions and the best possible answers, and it could boost traffic to your website. Brainstorm with your colleagues and customers about what information they want to see there.
Once you’ve completed the database, schedule regular updates to ensure that it always has the best information.
Don’t stop there. Consider content that could add extra value for your client. Take the topics that you cover in your knowledge base and brainstorm ideas for blog posts.
If you sell life insurance, for example, you could center blog content on how the different types operate and how people can select the best type for their needs. You would then provide links from the knowledgebase to the relevant posts and vice versa.
Think of what the client would need to know to decide from start to finish. Where possible, provide as much information as possible. By doing so, you keep them on your website for longer and improve the odds of them finding the answers that they require.
Make it Simple to Contact Support
Some clients prefer to find the answer on their own. For those that do not, ensure that it’s as simple as possible to contact your technical customer support team. This advice may seem commonsense, but it’s more complicated in an omnichannel world.
Companies today must provide clients with multiple ways to access support. These might include:
- Phone: Calls should be answered within a few rings, or clients might become frustrated
- Email: Most consumers understand that there’ll be a lag time before they receive an email reply. In the past, a 24-hour response time was considered normal. Today, it’s best to deal with emails within an hour of receipt.
- Social Media: Clients posting on social media expect an immediate response. Set up a simple chatbot to acknowledge queries and answer those that are simple enough.
- Instant Chat: Again, clients expect instant answers via instant chat. Companies may employ chatbots to help manage the volume of queries. They will, however, usually need to augment this with human support 24/7.
The more channels companies add, the more difficult creating a consistent experience is. Going forward, firms should concentrate on a channel-less approach instead. With such a system, companies focus on the customer experience rather than a particular channel.
Doing so makes it easy to add ancillary platforms as and when necessary.
Listen to Your Users
Keeping track of the incoming requests and listening to what your clients say provides valuable information. Such data comes in handy when tweaking a product or upgrading a service. It’s also a time-honored way of ensuring that your service is putting out the correct message.
You may also gather information by:
- Using customer surveys: Small, quick surveys take seconds to complete and may uncover interesting information. It’s easy enough to put out a rating card or ask for a rating after a call.
- Asking your clients: If you’re dealing with the client directly, it’s the perfect opportunity to ask for suggestions to improve. You may ask them to complete a comment card or send them an SMS or email to rate the service. Alternatively, make a suggestion box available.
- Monitoring review sites and your social media accounts: Disgruntled clients may wish a more public forum to air their grievances. Monitor social accounts to ensure that complaints are dealt with quickly.
Do you remember a company called Blockbuster? They literally destroyed their business by assuming that they knew what their clients wanted. They didn’t identify Netflix as a threat because they never consulted their users.
Use the Right Tools
Running a successful technical team means providing your consultants with the best tools. They’ll need access to a robust CRM system, high-speed internet, and a simple dashboard that combines all incoming queries.
A sound CRM system should provide all these tools and more. It’ll make it easier for the consultants to pick up queries and follow up on them. They’ll be able to access all the client information and query details in one useful format, saving time.
The customer benefits through greater efficiency, and the team member’s work becomes a little easier.
It’s Technically a Wrap
Providing outstanding technical support is a smart retention strategy. Not only do you wow the client with your service, but you ensure they’re using the product correctly. Both factors reduce churn and make it more likely for your customer to recommend your business.