Tag Archive for: customer service

Contact Page Best Practices

People visit websites to connect with businesses. So, a Contact Us page is an essential element of every website. The right content on this page can improve both customer satisfaction and SEO.

The best practices list starts with having a contact page. This is a basic and critical way you engage with site visitors, signaling that what they want or need is as important as what you want to share.

Make sure it’s clear how they can get in touch. Don’t get fancy with the navigation label – call it “Contact” or “Contact Us.” Add the menu item to your main and/or footer navigation.

A contact page needs to offer more than a form. There will be people that don’t understand the form, who can’t work it from a small screen like a cell phone and/or are just naturally averse to submitting any information online.

Provide more contact options, like an email address, phone number or social media. Only list options that you want people to use and that you will commit to monitoring. Don’t ask people to tweet if you never monitor your account!

Keep the page current. Like all your other web pages, your contact page needs maintenance. Make sure your information is accurate at all times. If you have a form, periodically test it to make sure it still works.

7 Steps to Complete Client Delight

Guest Post by Kim Fredrich, Sales for Non-Salespeople

Clients purchase from you with the expectation that you’ll deliver what you’ve promised.

Sounds like a solid way to run a business.

What happens when you delight your customer?

When you:

  • Really, truly listen to your client’s needs
  • Make it easy to buy from you
  • Exceed expectations throughout the engagement
  • Make any wrongs right
  • Anticipate client needs before they are articulated?

There are some of us old enough to remember when service providers dictated how service was provided. When we worked our schedule around the convenience of the service provider or we expected to remain on hold for hours just to get a resolution to a problem.

In our highly competitive, social media driven world, this is no longer acceptable. And frankly, that’s a good thing! Now, any company that doesn’t at least meet expectations won’t survive long.

So how does a company thrive and grow?

By always making it about the client.

Really, truly serving the client.

Isn’t that customer service? What does this have to do with sales? And me?

Every encounter clients and potential clients have with your organization is part of your sales effort. We’re all in sales.

So let’s get selling, I mean serving!

How to Delight your Clients

  1. Consider how YOU would like to be treated.

  2. Take yourself on a client journey – begin with a visit to your website, make contact with your organization, engage your company and experience your service first-hand.

  3. Ask clients for feedback consistently and regularly. Apply what you’ve learned.

  4. Listen and validate.

  5. Empower team members to seek out and deliver extra value to individual clients. Help your clients wherever possible.

  6. Empower team members to right any wrongs.

  7. Actively seek ways to delight clients throughout their customer journey.

Think like a small business owner.

Does the shopkeeper close the door to a customer who wants to make a purchase at closing time? No, he stays open. And the client rewards him with this sale, future sales and word of mouth advertising. Reciprocity and appreciation are worth many times more than the original sale.

The fast track to spectacular growth is an entire organization 100% focused on exceeding client expectations. Yes, it may cost a little more initially, but that sacrifice for short term profit is worth it in the long term.

When you actively create customer advocates acquisition costs plummet and profit rises.

Remember, service is sales and sales is service.

The continuum of sales and service is becoming increasingly circular – those who embrace it will succeed. Those who don’t will fail.

Customer Service on Social Media

According to a J.D. Power survey in 2013, 67 percent of consumers have used a company’s social media site for service. That expectation has only increased. Having a social customer support strategy is a must.

Is your social media team well-versed on customer service?

Many companies have a social media team that handles postings. Is that team trained for the customer service role?

Your brand’s response or lack of response to inquiries via social media are public. Others are watching. So an effective or ineffective response impacts well beyond one customer.

Have a customer service strategy

There’s no room for error. Customer service needs to be part of your social media strategy.

Decide who will handle customer service issues. That person or team then needs to be armed with the information to provide timely and accurate support. The more information and resources they have, the better service they can provide.

Once you have the team and insights in place, it’s time to create customer service guidelines. Address:

  • Standards for response time
  • Standard responses (create consistency)
  • When issues should be escalated to a higher level
  • Identifying constructive opportunities versus chronic complaints

Automate with care

It can be challenging to stay on top of social media support. The temptation to use automated tools is real. However, proceed with care. Replacing the genuine response people expect with automation can damage your brand.

Tools can help you to:

  • Provide immediate responses that set expectations for response time
  • Scan for brand mentions
  • Schedule timely information to proactively address customer concerns

Learn from your customers

Do more than respond. Get insight from customer inquiries. Are there common points of confusion that can be addressed in your social strategy? Does there seem to be a problem with a product or service?

Track inquiries and take steps to address any patterns or themes that emerge.  Understanding where customer dissatisfaction comes from enables you to improve .