Why Nailing Your Customer Service Is Important

Store owner tip: nail your customer service

A while back we surveyed on our private store owner community Store Owner Tips Facebook group to ask which support tools people were using.

I said I used Groove which had a couple of votes but was not one of the most popular choices.

Groove is like many SaaS companies, they started out with a simple offer and nailed their core product execution.

Then they started to grow, things changed with the line up over time, they expanded and of course, that meant the price had to go up a little bit to take care of those costs.

As a software developer, I totally understand that and find it fair and reasonable. But from a pure accounting perspective, there are actually cheaper companies out there providing similar tools.

So why am I still staying with them?

Why would I stay even though the cost is slightly higher?

Why Nailing Your Customer Service Is Important

This screenshot sums up why I have been sticking with them even though price competitiveness tells me I should look at other options.

Groove customer service interaction
(click to zoom)

They stand behind their product and take action if they can when I have a problem. I’ve had multiple similar interactions with Lesley from Groove over the last couple of years (as well as their founder Alex).

The Lesson For Store Owners

The lesson for store owners?

Customer service = standing behind your product and delivering amazing service.

The role that customer service plays in your company is vitally important. People on the receiving end of those customer service experiences will talk about you without you knowing.

So if you want that news to be positive, make sure you deliver a positive experience to people as much as possible.

Sure, you can’t always make everyone 100% happy, that’s the nature of putting something out into the world and selling something. But you can make sure that the overwhelming feedback is positive.

5 Tips For Nailing Your Customer Service

Let’s get into the meat of the article. Now you know that nailing your customer service is important, how exactly do you go about doing that?

Here are 5 tips that I’ve personally observed go a long way to delivering an award-winning customer service experience.

1. Be as fast as you can

Turn around times on people’s questions are important. People don’t want to wait days for a return email.

Likewise, if you have live chat on your store, people don’t want to wait more than 5 minutes for an initial reply. They’ll just close it.

Don’t use live chat if you can’t guarantee quick responses.

2. Solve the problem with as little back and forth as you can

One metric that I watch is the number of replies it takes to solve an issue.

Always be thinking, how can I reduce the number of emails this conversation will take.

A good example of eliminating needless back and forth is when you are trying to book someone’s time. Instead of saying “what time works for you this week?” be proactive and suggest 3 times. Eg, “Does Tuesday at 10am work for you? If not, how about Wed at 1pm or Thurs at 9am?”

The same goes for customer support. Try not to leave things open-ended or raise additional questions without answers.

For example, if you need to know some information, think about all the possible answers to that question and give next steps for each depending on what the customer’s answer is.

3. If you can’t solve it right away, own it and let them know what you’re doing to get there

I love how Groove emailed me back and was like “I don’t know but I’m going to investigate”.

As the customer, this keeps me in the loop and I then know that they are working on it, even though they didn’t have the answer right away.

I don’t need to worry whether they even received my request or if anyone had looked at it yet.

4. Use good a support tool, not your personal email

Back when I first started selling software I used to do all the support via my personal email.

When I brought on someone to help me with support, I was forced to get more formal because I didn’t want to share my personal inbox as there was other sensitive stuff in there beyond just support requests. I had to look for a tool to help me share that support inbox.

I settled on Groove because it was simple, but in reality, you can use any support management tool. The point is that moving to a professional support system will help you manage your support requests more professionally and I think that is really important.

I would recommend investing in a system like this as early as possible.

It just ensures that everything gets handled and you literally can’t miss something due to having too many emails and accidentally archiving something important.

Treat customer support in a professional way and respect the job by using the right tools.

5. Don’t talk in a professional business-like voice, be personal and real

And lastly, this is something I usually have to beat out of my new support reps when they start, don’t put on a fake ass “professional speak” business-like tone in your emails.

Behind every business, every job, there is a PERSON.

So talk like a real living breathing person would and your interactions will be 1000x better.

Be personal and be real.

Being casual/informal doesn’t mean being lazy in your writing, I’m not advocating using ‘u’ over ‘you’ and other shorthand text-speak.

It means being casual where you seem like a real person.

I guess the best way to describe it is to type like you speak.

How Important Is Customer Service To Your Store?

Really important.

“89% of shoppers have stopped buying from online stores after they’ve experienced poor customer service.”

RightNow

Do yourself and your store a favor and take it seriously.

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