Customer Service Advice

Customer Service Tips

Written by Angela Ly for Gaebler Ventures

When you interact directly with customers, you need to make a good impression to keep customers coming back. We share some do's and don'ts of customer service.

Whether you are meeting customers yourself or training employees to do so, it is useful to bear in mind some of the do's and don'ts in serving customers.

Customer Service Tips

1. Do greet customers

Do greet customers when they walk in to your store, and do it with a smile. People like their presence being acknowledged, and they will feel more appreciated when they enter. Sincerity is important, and to do make your greeting a good one, you have to sincerely welcome customers. Look at them while you greet them, loud and clear, even if they do not take notice.

2. Do take phone calls efficiently and politely

If you run a business where customers often call in to make enquiries or book appointments, make sure that there are enough staff to handle the volume of phone calls expected. It is frustrating for customers to wait for a long time, only to get their lines cut off.

When picking up the call, staff should stick to a short and sweet opening line, such as "Hello, ABC store. This is Clara." Staff should say this clearly and slow enough for the caller to understand. Often, people call in only to hear a long string of words mashed together, making it impossible to make out which store and which person they had just dialed and either confuses or annoys them.

3. Don't pressurize customers

You should avoid hard core sale tactics like the plague. These not only turn off customers, but also leave a lasting bad impression on them and the bad reputation spreads quickly. You may be able to make a sale now on customers who succumb to your fiery sales pitch, but they will probably never return again.

Giving customers enough room and personal space is also essential. Do not tail them around everywhere, but just be available to explain anything should they need you to.

4. Do ask for feedback

Provide feedback and comment cards and encourage customers to fill them in if they have the time, especially if it is a service provided that extends for a longer period of time and thus called for more customer interaction. Constructive criticism allows you to make the necessary changes that will improve your business in future.

5. Do provide good after-sales service

Many retail shops and other companies fail to provide adequate after-sales service. For instance, they may take a long time to respond to queries and other requests. After-sales service is important because the customer experience does not stop once the purchase or order is made. Customers continue to have expectations of the attention that they deserve, and this may affect return sales.

We emphasize that they key to providing good customer service is professionalism and sincerity. Treat them like you would a guest in your home.

Angela is currently an MBA student at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. Ms. Ly is looking to specialise in Finance, and has an interest in exploring topics in entrepreneurship and strategies for small businesses.

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