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We will use this space to share with you the latest developments on what we do at Youstice. We will also invite various experts to speak their mind about a number of topics, such as online dispute resolution, as well as the latest trends in issue management, e-commerce and technology, among others.

Six Common Customer Service Mistakes

According to Forrester research from 2013, 45 percent of all U.S. consumers abandon their online transaction if their questions or concerns aren’t addressed in an efficient manner. Simply put, if you cannot provide efficient customer service, you might lose as much as almost half of your sales!

All that being said, it’s not that hard to avoid the biggest customer care mishaps. Let’s look at six most common mistakes you may be making with regards to your customer service and see how to fix them quickly and easily.

1. Treating Your Staff Poorly

Greater productivity, fewer sick days and higher sales figures? Yes, please! According to employee engagement expert Chad Halvorson, all of this stems <>from happy employees. Are you creating a positive working environment?

Sales consultant Carrie Wynne suggests current work force needs these four inspirations at work: fun environment promoting co-worker bonding, monetary compensation and rewards (e.g. profit sharing), recognition and further learning opportunities. Try to check all the boxes and invest in proper training of your staff.

2. Melting Down On Social Media

Social media is a great source of information about your brand. Not only it is a great channel for your PR, but your customers can - and will - use Facebook comments and Twitter mentions to see what other clients think of you.

One of the most notable examples of how not to lead the Facebook conversation was the epic meltdown of Amy’s Baking Company Bakery Boutique & Bistro from 2013. (By the way, the same bakery that Gordon Ramsay refused to work for as they were too difficult to co-operate...) Their rage storm ensured them golden reputation of "company non-grata" in social media marketing circles. How did they get there? You can read the entire history at BuzzFeed.

Social media communication takes nerves of steel, poise and integrity. If you are interested in how to avoid looking like a lunatic, or simply be more efficient with the use of social media, our colleague wrote a nice blog post about how to keep your cool when you're facing social media trolls.

3. Ignoring Returns Policy

In 2013, NY Times article shared a story about the negative customer experience of the premium kitchen appliances provider, Whirpool. In order to replace the faulty 216 USD microwave within the warranty, they asked the customer to pay an additional fee of 75 USD. Will the unhappy client ever buy from Whirlpool again? “Maybe if they were the last manufacturer on earth.” Then he reconsidered. “On second thought, not even then.”

Returns should not be a labor for your customers – after all, they just want to continue using your product. However, if you put obstacles and unexpected expenses in their way, sooner or later you may lose their loyalty. Create fair and effective solution for any returns scenario and you’ll see the results.

4. Playing Hard To Get

According to the Corporate Executive Board research from 2011, customers who are forced to make high effort to contact the company are 96 percent more likely to end up disloyal. To put in another words, the harder the communication with your e-shop is for your customer, the more likely are they going to run off to your competition.

What should be the lesson learned? Lower the threshold for customer feedback. Make your e-mail and phone visible on the website. Shorten your response time. Nowadays, you can be alerted to any mail or social media comment almost immediately, with the help of right tools. Take advantages of notifications and make sure your customer can always reach you.

5. Using Archaic Technology

Small Business Sentiment survey from 2013 suggests that only 34 percent of small businesses in US use technology for customer service. That means that two third are likely tracking customer service issues via their notebooks and sticky notes… Now, that’s not going to end up in a great customer satisfaction numbers, is it?

Even a very small e-shop can afford basic apps for customer service. Start with integrated widget for social media comments and feedback, or better yet, try additional customer service communication tools like dynamic live chat (e.g. LiveAgent) or fully integrated platform for complaint management (e.g. Youstice) to see the real difference.

6. Not Giving Your First Responders The Power To Solve Issues In Real Time

Helpscout research suggests that 73% of customers abandoned brand due to incompetent staff. Unless you are a huge corporation, it's ambitious to say that you would need multiple levels of hierarchy when dealing with customer issues.

Give your first responders a chance to solve customer issues on the spot. By using complaint management and dispute resolution platform, like the app Youstice, you are not only empowering your staff, but you are also giving your customers much quicker and efficient way of settling their issues.

If you are interested in reading more about upgrading your customer service, see our post about meaning of customer-centricity or our thoughts about necessity of automation.

Do you want to considerably improve your customer service by adding a state-of-the-art complaint management tool? Try our app Youstice for 3 months – for free and see our subscription packages.

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