Customer service seemed to be an underrated marketing strategy used by organizations in keeping their customers loyal to their products and services. Its effects could lead to positive and negative impacts and both could directly affect the whole business entity. For some industry and enterprises, customer service is the root of their image and success- all because they understand that the effects of customer service is highly important in the market and they know how to play with it.
What is Customer Service?
Customer service is the interaction between a customer and an employee of an organization that involves giving something extra to the customer to add more value to the original product or service. These value-added features or services offered could cater the needs, answers queries and satisfy concerns.
Since same products and substitute products are considered as part of the competition margin, customer service is used as a tool to promote uniqueness, creativity and differences amidst competition. For decades, this strategy proved to be effective in maintaning loyalty and satisfaction among customers.
What are the phases of Customer Service?
Customer Service is a cycle which involves three important phases:
This is the first phase which involves promoting the details and features of the product, it’s marketing scheme using informative and persuasive approach to make the customer understand the difference of the product or service from the rest. Pricing information is also discussed before ordering the product or the service.
The second stage sets the ambiance for the customers. This could mean that the transaction is happening inside a store or on the delivery of the product. Either way, customer service employees should make sure the convenience of buying and ensure the billing information.
The last phase happens after the product has been sold. It is a part of the service to help with the faults, if there are, answer customer complaints, and solve warranty issues.
All these jobs are performed by customer service employees. Excellent to good service will result to customer retention while poor service results to zone of tolerance which is compromising on some factors that might end up on customer dissatisfaction.
What are the responsibilities of a Customer Service employee?
Customer service is not an easy job. Some responsibilities are unchanging and some are unexpected especially when meeting a challenging customer. However, these challenging situations are what makes the field different from others. Employees do not just learn from the customers and the environment but they gain experiences that they apply when meeting the same situation.
Here follows some of the tasks a customer service employee must perform:
-Take care of the billing and payments
-Ensure service quality
-Meet customer expectations
-Knowing customer needs
-Know consumer rights
-Understand the customer buying behaviour
-Respect customer feedback
-Deal with challenging situations
-Must practice self-regulatory techniques
-Be professional and competent
-Should be friendly and caring
-Must know how to communicate effectively
-Able to make decisions
-Has confidence to solve problems
-Must be cordial at all times
-Gives assurance on the quality, service and company policy
-Able to make the customers feel special
The above mentioned responsibilities could directly or indirectly affect the business and its market. Remember that customer service deals with the customers, and customers are the most important contributor in the market. To put it simply, the success of customer service could predict the success of the whole organization while the failure of it could lead to negative effects toward the organization.
What are the reason for choice of product?
According to a research conducted in the United States of America:
7% of customers refers to technical specifications of the product
50% of the population depends on the manufacturer’s response and services
This large difference is important for customer service departments as well as to the whole organization because this concludes that customer service plays a big role in the success of every organization. Its effects lead to visible changes in the market and could move the profit margin.
What are the benefits of a customer-centred organization?
A customer-centred organization prioritizes the needs and demands of the customers through and effective customer service. With this, the following are the benefits of a customer-centred organization:
-Establishes trust and confidence about the organization in the customers
-Reassures customers about best quality work
-Excellent business image
-Good relationship with the customers
-Leads to more business
-Focus on customer needs
-Differentiation from the competition
-Satisfied employees and customers
-Competitive and justifiable prices
-Good relation with suppliers
-Increase in profit
Furthermore, customer-centered organizations possess more shares in the market because of the expanding benefits, determined strength and visible opportunities.
What are the reason for changing product?
According to a research conducted in the United States of America:
8% relates to the quality or cost
40% argues on dissatisfaction with the service
The difference is almost five times and this means that service provides a great impact on customer buying behaviour. Customers are dependent on the subjective service provided by the organization. Since customer buying behaviour is sometimes unpredictable, it is a must that employees provide details and help the consumers decide according to their needs and demands.
What are the disadvantages of a poor service?
As said before a poor service results to negative effects and disadvantages to the organization. The following are some of the disadvantages of a poor service:
-Zone of tolerance (Compromising on some factors)
-Dissatisfaction of the customers
-Change or shift of product
-Might result to loss of shares in the market
-Untrustred quality and image
-Might lose in the product or service competition
-More challenging situations
-Gives less confidence to the employees and the customers
-Receives less and low expectations
-Do not esablish good relationship to the consumers and the suppliers
-Might not reach a customer’s needs and demands
In situations like this, share on the market may still be retreived through proper planning and execution of an excellent customer service. Note that most customers rely more on the comfort of the services rather than specifications. Customer service is an easy to use and helpful tool to provide services and make the business profitable and successful.