By now, you probably know just how important good customer service is for any business. This becomes even more true in this day and age, as more and more technology is creeping its way into our lives.
With smartphones and tablets always on hand, it is incredibly easy for a person to contact a business with a question or concern. What’s more, those individuals all expect very fast response times and outstanding service.
This is all great, as it fills our world with a number of very customer-oriented businesses, but it does present some challenges that businesses never had to face in the past. How a business handles these challenges can make or break them, which means business owners should think very carefully before making any big decisions.
One of the biggest challenges companies are facing due to the modern, customer-oriented business world is directly related to the fast response time expectation mentioned above. Because the modern adult tends to be very busy, making them wait for anything can lead to frustration and anger. This anger can easily create some very bad publicity for the company in question if that upset customer takes to the internet to spread the word about their poor experience. Therefore, it is crucial that businesses find a way to give customers the prompt service they want.
Unfortunately, this is a difficult problem to solve. While quickly answering queries during business hours should never be a problem, replying in a timely manner during the night and on weekends is not so simple. After all, keeping staff in the office around the clock is costly and usually ends up hurting the business financially rather than helping.
Luckily, there are a few ways to address the issue without resorting to keeping the office open at all times. Here are three of our favorites:
#1: Set Up a Self-Help Portal
Research shows that the vast majority of individuals prefer to attempt to solve problems on their own before reaching out for help. By taking advantage of this common DIY attitude, businesses can save time and money while simultaneously keeping customers happy, no matter when they happen to contact the company.
A well-designed and comprehensive self-help portal can reduce the workload for staff and give customers the answers they need when they need them. Because most businesses find that a large number of their customer service calls are related to similar problems or questions, the portal can be built to address these issues and queries in-depth. This will significantly reduce the number of tickets your staff is dealing with and give impatient customers something to work with during off-hours.
Self-help portals can be built from scratch, but the easier solution is to use a customer service software such as Vision Helpdesk. Out software provides you with a professional, easy-to-use template, so you can have your self-help portal up and running in no time.
#2: Create a Strong Facebook Community
A strong Facebook community can also provide your customers with the self-help options they crave. By creating an online space for your customers to share what they love about you and discuss what they don’t, you give those who have invested in your product or service the ability to connect with others over their purchase.
With access to an entire Facebook group educated about your business, your customers will likely feel inclined to visit the group for solutions to their problems before submitting a customer service ticket. Those members who have experienced similar issues can help their fellow customers resolve those same problems. Additionally, because people are online 24 hours a day, they are very likely to get an incredibly prompt response.
Still, even the strongest Facebook communities can’t provide all of the answers. For this reason, all social media accounts and pages should be checked by staff members regularly. Unanswered questions and unresolved problems should be taken care of by employees, and a representative of your company should post regularly in order to keep the group active.
If you are worried about social media requests for help slipping through the cracks, you might consider using Vision Helpdesk. Our software helps your staff catch every single need for support by importing all calls, email messages, and social media shouts for help into one, simple-to-use queue. This makes the customer support job far less stressful, and helps staff stay organized and on top of things.
#3: Hire Help
Although keeping your office open all day every day is probably not an option, there is no reason why you can’t hire freelancers to be on call throughout the night and on weekends. Because these individuals would be working from their own homes, you needn’t pay for the typical office expenses or a manager. Additionally, because these contract workers will not be working in the office, they can be from anywhere in the world. This is helpful when it comes to scheduling, as it means those who are working during your night hours can be from a place where those hours are during a regular working time for them, making the arrangement convenient for all involved.
As you can see, there are a number of ways to ensure your customers are never left waiting long periods of time for a response from your staff. By implementing one or two of these ideas, you can have happier customers, fewer overwhelmed staff members, and one of the best customer service departments out there!