What do you do when you face issues with a product or service? Whom do you call first? Of course, the company’s customer service call center. And, how many times have you thought “Wow, that agent truly had some great customer service skills.”?
Probably not too many.
We all know that customer service is a difficult job, particularly if you want to make it exceptionally good. Even the smallest mistakes made while handling a client can cost you big.
To provide excellent customer service here are a few skills that every agent must follow to provide the best customer experience.
Customer Service Skills
Customers call you when they are upset or frustrated about something. Whether it’s password recovery or a complicated IT issue, the customer on the other end of the call is often unhappy or frustrated. They may also struggle to understand your instructions. Patience is definitely a skill every agent should have.
Agents should give customers a chance to describe their situation completely, never respond negatively to an unhappy customer. Simply take the time to listen to them without cutting them off or saying they are wrong, and see what happens.
We don’t want to be cheesy, but the old saying is true: Patience is a virtue.
Often, customers call you because they are facing some difficulty. Agents need to understand what that issue is. But, customers don’t always understand what they need help with. For example, the customer may only know that their laptop “isn’t working,” or s/he may be worried that a product isn’t working the way s/he believed it would.
It’s up to agents to ask good questions, understand and evaluate the answers, provide knowledgeable solutions and then assure that the solutions they give solve the problem.
Agents interacting with customers must be quick on their feet while solving their problems. Great customer service means getting to the root of problems and then coming up with the solutions instantly.
To provide exceptional customer service, you’ll certainly need to be able to put yourself in your customers’ shoes. Empathy is important here.
To improve your empathy skills, simply practice considering how a customer may feel in a particular situation, then think about how you can make them feel better.
Sometimes it may take a lot of effort, but the representative’s performance will always benefit if they try their best to be empathetic.
By showing empathy, you’ll be able to calm down annoyed customers more easily and solve issues to everyone’s mutual satisfaction. As a result, the overall customer experience and the call center’s reputation will improve.
#4 Positive Language
Language forms the way we think about everything. The words we choose have a great influence on how we understand it and approach it. In customer service, you should use positive language rather than negative.
While dealing with clients, you’re usually trying to implement solutions or overcome challenges, and your language should show that. Concentrate on what can be done instead of what can’t be done.
For example, a customer calls you with an interest in a specific product, but that product is out of stock until next month. Tell them what you can do, not what you can’t do.
- Negative Language: “I can’t provide you that product till next month; it is out of stock at this time.”
- Positive Language: “The product will be available next month. I can place the order for you now and assure you that it is delivered to you as soon as it reaches our warehouse.”
Recognize the difference?
By using positive language, agents can overcome a customer’s problem before they even identified they had one. Using the appropriate language and tone in customer service is very important. Little changes in phrasing can lead to interesting results in the way your customers feel.
#5 Closing Ability
Closing means being able to end the discussion with guaranteed client satisfaction and with the customer feeling that everything has been taken care of. You never want your client to leave feeling unsatisfied.
While closing the call, always ask:
- Were all your issues solved?
- Is there anything else we can assist you with.
This tells the customer you care about them and are ready to help them right to the end.
Customer service skills should be continuously learned and improved to give the best customer experiences. A blend of training and motivation to acquire such skills allows agents to deliver the best customer service for long-term brand loyalty. Now that you have the basic list of customer service skills, take time to make great use of it!