Why You Should Take Time to Focus on Customer Service Right Now
We’re about to hit the busiest time of the year for most business owners. The holiday selling season is intense, hectic, and often hard to deal with. During this busy time parts of your business undoubtedly go neglected – not on purpose, of course, but when you’re so busy sending off packages and fulfilling orders you simply don’t have time for everything.
One of these could unfortunately end up being customer service. Most are so focused on making as much money as they possibly can that they forget to take care of the people who have already purchased something. However, it’s very important to treat everyone equally, especially if you want those customers to come back the next year!
Focus Now Rather Than Later
The fact the busy holiday season is literally around the corner is all the reason why you should take some time to boost your customer service.
What you should focus on mainly depends on how big or small your company is. The challenges you’ll face as a single entity business will be drastically different than if you have a full customer service team at your disposal.
Full Team: While it may seem like you would have the easier time here, it’s still important to take some time before the “crazy time” begins. Your team members have issues they’re not talking about and need some help fixing them. Even if they don’t have any problems on hand, problems will arise when you’re going over policy and established routines. Try starting from scratch and see where any confusion lies, particularly when questions about the products you sell come up.
From there, make sure all of your processes are streamlined. Is everybody trained on your help desk system? Do you give opportunities for your team to share frequent questions or complaints with one another (and you)? If not, time to get started.
Just You: If it’s just you running the ship, then you have a task ahead of you. While you may have an ok time during the rest of the year, you should try to figure out how you can make your life easier when business picks up. For example, think of what your most common complaints/questions are. Put these in a FAQ so you don’t have to take time answering them on the phone or through email. Outline your policies on your website so customers know what your shipping, return, and other rules before they even think of buying anything from you.
Finding the Weak Spots
The worst thing that can happen during the holidays is you losing customers due to mismanaged customer service. Keep in mind these woes won’t just vanish when the selling season is done; if things go wrong enough they’ll continue weeks after with returns and refunds. It can seem like people are overreacting, but when they’re counting on their fabulous Christmas gift coming in on time and it doesn’t, they can freak out.
You may not know where the weak spots are, of course. So why not ask your customers? They’re the ones who have deal with your customer service in the past so they can tell you point blank what doesn’t work. Send out some emails or put up a question or even a poll on social media.
For incentive for them to answer, offer a holiday discount or another promotion if they respond. Hopefully this will result in a lot of great discussions how you can improve your business; not just for the holidays, of course, but for next year and beyond!