How to Promote Good Customer Service Online
With the explosion of social networking sites, there are now far more opportunities online for customers to let you and potentially hundreds of others know if they approve or disapprove of your service, so it's now even more important to deliver. Here's how to get on the good side of your customers:
Key Factors to Help with Online Customer Service
- Promote various ways in which your customers can contact you on your website. A free phone number creates a form of trust, enabling customers to contact you with any queries at any time. Also feature your email address, postal address and social networking sites so customers can contact you in a way that suits them.
- Guide customers through every step of their purchase journey by creating auto-responder emails. These are triggered at the point of purchase, shipment and on delivery. They can also be used in relation to stock issues. Auto-responder emails reassure customers after they have purchased and create a good sense of service.
- Impress customers by following up after the purchase. Ask them if the product, delivery and overall level of service was good. This will create a good impression and help cement a loyalty to the brand.
- If a customer has a complaint or writes a negative review or post on a social networking site, don't ignore it. Listen to their views and act quickly. Responses should be personal rather than using a stock response which gives the impression of not caring and only serves to infuriate. If the matter needs looking into, be honest and say that, then take the customer's contact details and promise to get back to them with an explanation and a resolution.
Other Issues Relating to Online Service
With online purchases, customers expect to find what they are looking for quickly and to receive their items in a reasonable amount of time. These points can all help form a good or bad opinion relating to the service from your business:
- Website navigation is key to the experience. Can the web visitor easily shop and move around the website in order to find what they want? Does your website have a search box so that time-pressed customers can quickly type in what they are looking for?
- Usability. Is your website user-friendly on all browsers? Are customers easily able to access it from their desktops, tablets and mobiles? Is there sufficient information within your website content that will persuade your customers to convert?
- Is there sufficient stock? Having searched for an item and eventually found it, it can be frustrating for the user if there is no stock available. If certain lines have sold out and especially where there is a high demand for the item, you should communicate by posting when stock is likely to be available and the options available to customers. For example taking details to advise when an item becomes available.
In many ways, online customer service is just the same as promoting good customer service offline: you need to make the transactional process smooth and easy. Complaints and issues need to be dealt with quickly and honestly. Communication needs to be open and allow for a dialogue to develop.
Core Media Design can help with key online design factors that can affect service such as usability and navigation. Contact us today to find out more.