Customer Service Mistakes you should avoid
Many companies believe that if they have a great product or service, they already have their success in the bag.
This might be partly true, but it’s not the full picture.
The customer service that your business provides is just as important, if not more so, than the service or product it sells.
The single most crucial factor that can help to set you apart from your competitors and make an impression on your target audience is your level of customer service.
Especially amid today’s increasingly tough marketplace.
Are you constantly dealing with unsatisfied customers and consistent complaints?
You might be making one of the 10 most common mistakes that customer service professionals make daily.
Here are the 10 customer service mistakes to avoid to stop customers from turning to your rivals.
10 Customer Service Mistakes that sadly are too common
1. Failing to Train Staff
Your customer service employees need comprehensive training to perform their jobs well.
They are the ambassadors who represent your brand, and you need to hire and train them accordingly.
Every single member of your customer service team should be trained on how to deal with customers effectively, whether your team consists of 5 staff members or 500!
A single inefficient or rude customer service team member can negatively impact your company’s reputation among your customers.
Untrained employees may not efficiently deal with customers’ issues or empathise with their complaints.
This is why it’s crucial to train your staff and keep strict quality control regulations in place to monitor and improve the level of customer service that your company delivers.
2. Arguing with Customers
That old marketing-related adage is absolutely correct: the customer IS always right!
Your customer service staff should never argue with your customers, even if they deem them to be ‘wrong’.
Thousands of companies make this mistake every day.
Unfortunately, this approach can not only lead to the loss of a single sale but also the loss of that customer and future patrons as well.
3. Being Inaccessible
Your customers need to be able to keep in touch with you quickly, easily, and regularly, no matter the size of your business.
You can ensure your accessibility in several ways, from setting up a phone contact line to adding your email address and social media details to your website.
You need to monitor these communication pathways consistently, if not 24/7, for best results.
You will build a much stronger long-term relationship with your clients if they can always contact you with questions, complaints, or compliments.
4. Passing Your Customers Around
Customers who get passed around from representative to representative when they contact your call centre are not likely to become loyal patrons.
Shoppers who have to wait half an hour to speak to a customer service professional aren’t likely to come back, either.
Ensure that customers have all the information they need to contact the right department and train your service professionals to resolve issues quickly and efficiently, as they arise.
5. Failing to Plan
If you make pledges to your customers, you and your customer service team need to be completely sure that you can deliver on them.
This is where having a business plan that clearly maps out what you can deliver—and how—is incredibly useful.
Not having a plan is planning to fail.
If you cannot clearly define how you’ll deliver on promises, then even the smallest challenge may trip you up.
You can also train your employees to know when a point of failure occurs, and how to respond accordingly.
If you don’t, you’ll leave them floundering, potentially making promises they cannot keep.
6. Not Keeping Customer Records
Your customer records are an untapped goldmine.
Successful businesses always put in the effort to build and maintain comprehensive customer records.
Noting your customers’ purchase histories and buying habits can help you tailor your customer experience in a way that makes them feel acknowledged and valued.
Plus, it will help you develop customized marketing strategies through which you can show your customers products that they are more likely to invest in.
7. Not Being Personal Enough
If you needed another reason to maintain excellent customer records, here it is.
Having these records on hand enables you to correspond with your customers in a personal and authentic way.
Generic, impersonal emails and messages don’t make much of an impression.
You need to tailor your customer correspondences according to their interests and needs to capture their attention.
8. Being Too Rigid
Businesses that treat all of their customers and their issues as unique are the ones that come out on top.
Regard every instance in which a customer approaches you as a chance to build a lasting personal relationship.
This is a fantastic way to show them you care about their satisfaction and will do whatever it takes to keep them coming back.
Many companies make the mistake of adhering too strictly to their policies at their customers’ expense.
Train your staff to use their discretion when implementing policies and rules.
Don’t be afraid to be flexible in bending those rules and meeting the needs of your valued patrons.
9. Failing to Listen
Customer service professionals are only human, and they cannot always understand what a customer wants the first time around.
Listening closely and attentively to customers can reduce margins of error, and help clients to resolve their issues the first time around.
10. Neglecting Good Manners
So many businesses and their customer support teams forget about basic good manners when under pressure.
Even if you’re communicating casually in an email, or via live chat on a desktop computer, never underestimate the power of basic manners.
Your customers will always appreciate employees that show genuine empathy, apologize when necessary, and say “please” and “thank you”.
Showing good manners and empathy are easy, zero-cost ways of showing customers you care.
The Bottom Line
There are a handful of common customer service mistakes that customer service professionals make result in dealing with customers significantly more challenging than it should be.
Customer service staff needs to be trained comprehensively to use good manners, listen well, and show authentic empathy and compassion when dealing with customers.
Businesses should provide proper training for their customer service teams, keep immaculate customer records, and strive to always deliver on their company promises.
More tips and help:
- Learn: Search our specialist customer service courses for the frontline >
- Read: How to Make Customer Service More Digital >
- Search: A list of industry suppliers of contact centre technology >