The widely used tricks of delivering great customer service seem fairly easy; be empathetic, helpful and acknowledge customers. Develop these skills and you are set. Sure, you can master them to please customers and make a difference.
But, in practice, delighting your customers is not that simple – what actually works do not reflect what most of us would assume.
There are few studies, which show counter-intuitive facts that can make or break your customers’ experiences. Below are such eye-opening data points on what people really expect out of “good” customer service.
1. Speed of customer service does matter but not in all case.
The conventional norm is ‘deliver the fastest customer service to make them happy.’ That’s true, as delayed support never pleases customers either. But there are other, often-over looked elements which are more important than speedy customer support.
Gallup conducted one survey at bank to measure how engaged customers felt while being served at moderate speed.
Customers who felt that the bank offered speedy service were six times more likely to be highly engaged, while customer who rate the bank service on “people” factors (like courtesy and willingness to help) were nine times more likely to be fully engaged.
Rather than stern focus on delivering fast services, emphasis attentive and thorough customer service. Speed is one factor, but it is markedly less important than having team who can deliver services in friendly and competent manner.
But yes, when it comes to social media, speed matters the most. Customer expectations changes based on the mediums and for social media speed is inevitable amongst other ways of interactions like email, call or in-person support.
According to the social habit survey, 32% of social media users who contact a brand expect response within 30 minutes, and 42% expect it within 60 minutes.
2. The old cliché: Start with the good news, or the bad news!? Well, it depends.
You might have come across this question many times; whether you want them to start with the good news or the bad news. We assume that it hardly matters, but actually the order does make a difference and can actually change the way your customers feel and act.
Researchers at UC-Riverside tested the order in which they deliver news to subjects, and evaluated their behavior and responses. And the findings were interesting: people who were given the good news first were more motivated to act on the news while people who were given the good news last were more likely to feel better about what they told.
Bad news -> Good news = Happy Customer
Good news -> Bad news = More likely to act
Generally we want our customers to feel happier so it is better to end conversation with good news, but if you want to convey a specific or a bit harsh message and want your customer to act on it, end the conversation with bad news. E.g., If your customer is not willing to co-operate, though you are being polite and empathetic, give the ultimatum by making it an ending note.
3. What’s the biggest reason people lose interest in doing business with you?
The answer is not the expected ones. It is NOT ..
- Low or high Price
- Product shortcomings
- Better product or better advertisement of competitors
Well, such reasons can surely cause dissatisfaction but the biggest reason of loyal customers losing interest in your brand or stop doing business with you is bad customer service. Moreover, 83% of people have left the organization because of bad experience. Whereas delighted customers by receiving exceptional support bring more return on investment and on an average spread the positive word of mouth to at least 9 people.
So deliver excellent customer service to build loyal customers, increase retention and referrals and grow your business quickly.
4. Go beyond Delighting if you crave for loyal customers !
Reduced efforts = customer loyalty, its that simple.
Delighting your customers is amazing habit to get into but by just being little more friendly or nice won’t suffice. The customer contact council surveyed more then 75000 customers to gauge their experience on phone, chat and email interactions with customer representatives and the study found that the single most important factor in boosting customer loyalty is reducing the amount of work the customer has to do to get their problem solved.
Surprise your customers by taking unusual approach i.e. reduce their efforts to minimal for resolving their problems and make the interactions pleasing.
Keep experimenting with various tricks to delight customers and never blindly follow trends that to without measuring their impact on your customer service.