In today’s ever-competitive business environment, it’s imperative for every business owner to build sound strategies that positively impact customer loyalty and retention.
To do this, special emphasis needs to be placed on great customer service.
Why? For starters, a 2009 survey suggested that the most common reason why customers cancel a service is because of poor customer support.
There’s no surprise there, really.
After all, the customer service agents is a business’s front line when interacting with customers. It’s how a company can establish a relationship with its client base.
Listed below are tips to improve customer loyalty and retention
1. Interact with customers on a personable level
This bit is crucial since people highly prefer to deal with people — and not companies or brands.
Customers in general want to feel that they are valued as people first, not just for the business opportunities they provide.
There are many ways your customer service team can pull this off, but perhaps the shorthand of it is to employ effective “soft skills.”
This can mean everything from greeting the customer by name, to showing courtesy at all times during each call, to thanking the customer for calling.
If recent studies on customer interaction are any indication, it is that clients are more likely to stay loyal to your brand if they are treated by customer service personnel in a personable manner.
2. Reduce customer effort
Customers grow frustrated when their issues are not resolved quickly, even more so when the resolution offered requires them to do some of the lifting.
According to a study published in Harvard Business Review, reducing customer effort positively impacts customer loyalty.
Train your employees to resolve issues more efficiently and chances are your customers will be less likely to cancel the service on a whim.
3. Go the extra mile for your customers
Another way to make customers stay with the company is to regularly offer them rewards and incentives.
By rewarding clients, you are showing them your appreciation for their business. More importantly, you are giving them good reasons to continue purchasing your services.
Another important strategy you can adopt is to regularly offer goodwill gestures to customers who have issues with the service.
For instance, you can offer customers a refund to compensate for the inconvenience they experienced on account of, say, a technical issue.
It’s important to note that goodwill gestures have more positive impact to customer loyalty when they are offered even if customers didn’t ask for them.
4. Be proactive
An amazing strategy to boost customer loyalty and diminish churn rates is to be proactive at all times.
What this means is that you have to anticipate the customer’s needs at every available opportunity.
Will the service be undergoing a service maintenance which could cause technical problems for customers? Inform them at least a few days in advance through all available channels.
Being forthcoming with customers in regards to information that concerns them inspires confidence and brand loyalty.
5. Foster customer-centered behavior into company culture
Emphasizing to agents that the main thrust of the company’s strategy is to deliver great customer experience can go a long way into making sure that every hand on deck is on board.
It makes for an easy integration of customer-centric policies and procedures into the company’s operations, resulting to positive results in customer support interactions.
We at Executive Boutique know this all too well, which is why we are committed to training our agents to be well-versed in the best practices that have been proven to improve customer experience.