14 Jun, 2018 Customer service for small business is no small feat
The behemoths of big business may seem like they’ve got the customer service market cornered with their 24-hour, overseas call centers staffed with highly trained droves of agents, a scale that is a bit too large for a smaller business’s budget and needs. It may even seem like there isn’t a place for robust customer service in the small business world.
Never fear, for technology and planning are here to show small business owners that they, too, can approach call centers and customer experience with a competitive edge to create a culture of high-quality customer service that builds loyalty and increases revenue.
The money-saving factors in establishing a dedicated call center are undeniable, no matter how small your enterprise. Your customers will be happier, your business will thrive more, and you’ll reduce expenditures for overhead and staffing with a streamlined service.
It’s all about planning, as is the case with any new call center implementation.
Outsource instead of juggling your business AND your customer service hub
When you let go of the belief that you must handle the entire operation of a call center along with your business just because you’re a smaller operation, you open the door to much more efficiency and growth potential. People have high demands for customer service, and you will notice when they begin perceiving your brand of customer experience through a less-than-rosy lens. Business will drop off. Reviews will be written. Friends and family will be informed. These are more noticeable for a small business, whereas they might be like a drop in a bucket for a larger, more established business, so by that take a dedicated call center might be even more critical of a requirement for small businesses.
Don’t put all your eggs in one basket with your small business. Find the optimal way to conduct customer service, and stay ahead.
Figure out how to customize and personalize your small business customer service ap-proach
Here is an advantage small businesses have over large ones when establishing a call center or customer experience portal: the planning is more effortless and straightforward. Since it’s necessary to customize the customer experience to match the demands of consumers, among which include personalization, you may have a more clear view of how to accomplish that, plus a much smaller data set to work with. Staff training and customer concerns will be generally scaled down, so there will be a more direct road to personalization. The data processing will also likely be more efficient since the customer base is smaller. Which brings us to the next point….
Use the best technology you can invest in
If you need a quick rundown of some of the most critical call center technologies that you can’t do without, they are:
1. Cloud computing – streamlined, fast, and easy to access technology that provides better storage options, seamless access to customer data on-the-fly, better reliability, and wide-spread use that includes lots of great support. It’s why so many call centers are making the switch to the cloud.
2. Chatbots – People like to interface with the quickest option for their service, which is why chatbots have been a huge success. They provide possible solutions for simpler inquiries, without ever escalating to a live representative.
3. Quality management apps – these are especially useful if you’re outsourcing since it’s important to monitor customer service satisfaction, agent performance, and general custom-er-agent interactions. It enables constructive feedback to be provided to staff for future training purposes.
4. Interactive video – another automated must-have that is emerging in more call centers. The video is a mediator between customer service waits and empowering consumers to see if they can learn from the video to resolve an issue themselves.
5. Automatic callback technology – this enables a more amicable wait time between the initial call and a customer’s queue in line by automatically dialing the customer’s number once they’re up to speak with a live agent.
Small businesses might have to be slightly more creative in some regards to establish a call center for customer service, but the tradeoff is a higher margin for growth, an easier time tracking failures and successes, and a more streamlined customer experience.