Customers have numerous issues, with varying degrees of sophistication or viewpoint. They are running out of time. They have an almost unlimited number of product options to choose from. They are wooed by product reviews.
In such situations, a customer may not be aware of the best solution to an issue. You as a service provider, however, can step into their shoes, come to grips with the problem, work out the solution and gain the customer’s trust.
The ability to solve a customer’s problem is what makes all the difference between churn and loyalty.
What is Problem-Solving in Customer Service?
Problem-solving in customer service is a skill that entails
- Knowing how to handle a conflict
- Being able to calm an agitated customer using tone of voice and true empathy
- Listening and speaking while maintaining a strong grip on problem-solving techniques.
How does bad customer service affect your business?
Customer service issues must be resolved because they affect other parts of the business. Businesses must become more customer-centric and coordinate their services in order to delight clients by effectively solving their problems.
You may have the ideal product and competitive pricing, but if your customer service is poor, your business can falter.
Let’s look at some of the ways in which bad customer service can impact a business.
Harms Brand Reputation
Customers like to share their stories. As a result, when people have a poor experience, they turn to their favorite media to express their feelings. A single poor review on Twitter or Facebook can defame your brand image.
“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.” -Warren Buffett
Lesser Conversions and Loss of Customers
Inefficient solving of customers’ problems, slow response times, and frequent negative experiences make prospects less likely to become customers and make current customers less likely to stay loyal.
“53% of customers are likely to stop buying from a brand after a poor customer service experience.” – source
Dip in Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)
Companies that consistently provide bad customer service eventually fail. Customers today have so many options that when they have a negative service experience, they will go to a competitor.
It’s widely known that one-time customers are expensive, whereas recurring customers bring a steady source of income.
Customer lifetime value is a measure that is computed by adding up all of a customer’s revenue over the course of their engagement with a company.
You can increase the lifetime value of your customers by delivering outstanding service. This means you can make more revenue by spending less money on customer acquisition.
Steps of Customer Service Problem-Solving
Here is a 5-step process for customer service problem-solving and troubleshooting when you come across a customer issue.
1. Ask, Ask and Ask
Ask the proper questions to learn what is upsetting your customer. You won’t be able to remedy your customer’s problem if you can’t place it.
For example, ask questions such as,
“Have you been dealing with this issue for a long time?”
Asking relevant questions will help you identify customer needs while also assisting you in determining an appropriate solution.
2. Identify the Problem
After having a question session with your customer to discuss their pain areas, you can restate or explain the situation as you have come to terms with it.
You must describe the problem precisely and do so from the customer’s perspective. Get the customer’s approval that you’ve grasped the problem.
Before you move on to the next phase, ask whether there is anything else that is bothering them.
3. Formulate Solutions
After a thorough examination of the problem, develop various solutions and present the best solution to the customer or prospect.
Your solution must be focused on the specific problem, and not ambiguous.
4. Deliver the Solution
Deliver the solution as promised. Take advantage of these opportunities to strengthen your customer relationships and demonstrate that you are worthy of their trust.
5. Follow up with Customers
It’s critical to check in with your customers to see how they feel about the solution and confirm that the issue has been fixed. This step demonstrates to customers that your organization values customer service and is committed to providing a better customer experience.
It’s important to ask some of these challenging questions when checking in with present customers in the hopes of upselling, cross-selling, or renewing their contracts.
“How satisfied are you with our product on a scale of one to ten?”
“How did you come up with that score?”
“What is it about our product/service that you enjoy?”
“Do you think you’ve experienced excellent customer service?”
This will keep you from overlooking warning signs that they’re dissatisfied and might begin to consider switching to a competitor.
In an era where ‘Customer is King”, happy customers are the secret to growth. As a result, customer satisfaction is a direct reflection of the effectiveness of your service team.
To improve customer experience and increase cross-selling and upselling opportunities, forward-thinking companies link their sales and customer service teams.
9 customer service problem-solving techniques
Customer service exists to assist customers with their demands or any issues that may arise while they are using your product or service. It is, therefore, necessary to train your staff on how to properly resolve customer complaints or problems. Learn about the methods a service representative can take toward customer service problem solving to deliver superior customer service!
Ask for the Customer’s Needs
Ask probing questions to get to the heart of the matter and uncover unmet customer needs. The answers to these questions can be used to create a workable solution, and this is a consultative approach that will strengthen customer relationships.
Listen to the Customer
Listen to the customer to prod deeper into the issue to determine the underlying cause. Only then will you be able to solve the problem at its core. You could even be assisting your company in developing stronger SOPs or regulations or eliminating a rigid process that is preventing you from running smoothly during the course.
The more you know about your customer and their company, the more you’ll be able to influence their bottom line.
When we are offended or proven wrong, we have an inbuilt propensity to react in a defensive manner. In customer service, this is a no-no.
To go through the situation unscathed, here are two tips that you can use.
Tip 1: Allow customers to talk
You should let your customers talk until they are able to release their frustrations and calm down.
Tip 2: Show that you care
The least you can do is support them and be empathetic toward the situation while customers go on explaining their tales. Use consoling phrases to comfort them.
Send Lightning-Fast Response
Every customer is strapped for time and expects a timely response from your support agent,
Kapture’s omnichannel help desk software can help you streamline how you manage customer inquiries across multiple channels.
Image: Kapture’s omnichannel dashboard
You can route inquiries from a certain channel to a dedicated team. This helps ensure a smooth customer experience and swift resolution of customer inquiries.
Another way around is to add a live chat feature to your website. It is a tool that helps customers instantly connect with your agent and work out solutions. Kapture’s live-chat tools embedded in your website can deliver faster responses.
Follow Solutions to the Conclusion
Once you’ve committed to providing the resolution, it’s in your best interests to see it through to completion.
The standard customer problem-solving process includes following up with clients and providing them with updates to keep them informed.
Sending follow-up emails is the most effective technique to keep in touch with them about the solution’s progress.
Kapture’s help desk software allows you to send emails from the same system that you use to respond to customer queries. You really don’t need to use traditional mail services for this. Likewise, the merits of a single sign-on help desk are many.
Use Visual Content
Your customer service representative can solve customers’ problems in a more comprehensible and exciting manner by offering them visual troubleshooting guides.
The best options are videos, graphical flow diagrams (depicting step-by-step instructions), or screenshots to resolve some of the very minor yet frequent issues.
Kapture’s knowledge base feature allows you to store and manage information in just about any format, which includes videos, images, and documents, that can be accessed via self-help tools.
This not only saves your time but also gives customers a quick and intelligible solution to their problems.
Offer an Incentive to Customers
Just to make sure that the recent product or service issue your customer faced did not bring any scar to your relationship, it is a supersmart way to butter up the bond with incentives.
Offering incentives to clients can help you gain their loyalty, and they may decide to wait until you fix their problem rather than looking for solutions elsewhere.
Incentivizing clients to compensate for the inconvenience encourages them to stay loyal.
Consider presenting a coupon or voucher, for instance, on the next transaction if you want to motivate a customer to use your service again.
Self-Help Option For Your Customers
Provide self-help capabilities such as AI chatbots, knowledge base, or interactive discussion forums so that customers can search, find and resolve problems on their own. AI-powered chatbots offer responses to customer queries contextually.
Do not undermine the convenience of a self-service. This is the most preferred channel of help by customers as revealed by many surveys.
Kapture’s AI and Machine Learning-powered self-serve tools are a fantastic approach to support your tech-savvy customers.
Image: Chatbot powered by Kapture
Customers that are happy with your service will stay longer, become repeat customers, and recommend your service to their friends and colleagues.
That’s why it’s critical to cultivate a customer-centric culture within your organization.
Remember to go the customer problem-solving way to create exceptional customer experiences.
Kapture’s AI-based solutions can assist you in effectively managing the entire customer service process and wowing your clients with customer delight factors such as
- Work-flow automation capabilities
- Omnichannel communication
- Self-help features
- Run automatic surveys
- Generate survey reports
Our solution is easy to use and integrates with other services like cloud telephony, social media, eCommerce, ERP, and others making it easy to collate the information at a centralized location.
Kapture, a customer service automation platform helps your team on how to serve and delight customers right from any touchpoint- and translate those efforts into building a loyal customer base.
Finally, follow the sound and systematic customer service problem-solving techniques outlined in the blog to win your customer’s hearts.
About the Author
|Seema C Mohan|
|Seema C Mohan is passionate about all things XaaS and loves to write value-added content. She has been in Business Process Management in the past and has published technology articles in journals.|