How often do you put off vital business growing tasks—like advertising or new product development—only to spend the time buried in customer support issues?
A few questions here, a few concerns there, and before you know it, the day is over and you’ve done nothing to grow your business…
Don’t fret. There’s a way you can actually improve customer support to get more conversions… while at the same time speeding up the process so you can move on to other vital tasks.
Customer Support Can Make Or Break Your Business
No matter what type of business you have, good customer support will play a vital role in it. This is because many customers will need to ask questions about a product or service, often before they make a purchase.
If they’re happy with the support they receive, they’re likely to buy. In fact, friendly customer support leads to repeat customers and raving fans.
But, that doesn’t mean you should get caught up in customer support—especially if it means you have to neglect other areas of your business.
That’s why I’m about to share five techniques that will allow you to improve customer support, go above and beyond for your customers, increase conversions, and still have time to do other important things for your business.
1. Treat every customer that contacts you like a great friend.
When you’re dealing with an upset or angry customer, it’s a good idea to take a deep breath and imagine you’re writing back to a good friend. Why? Because we tend to be nicer to people we’ve met in person.
Remember your customer probably views you as a machine. It’s true—a lot of people don’t even consider the real person behind the computer who may be upset by their rant. But, you know you’re dealing with a real person and can (and should) remind yourself that it’s not personal.
Try not to argue or confront the customer. This will often lead to a larger, more difficult situation to manage. Plus, an angry customer is more likely to tell their friends about the bad service.
If you can come across as not offended, sympathetic—and even nice about it—your customer will be happy and likely forgive you for whatever issue they were having.
In my online business, ComfyEarrings.com, I’ve had customers submit a support ticket and sometimes they seem really upset. However, my support team always responses in the nicest way possible, doing whatever they can to fix the issue. As a result, we’ve been able to turn many seemingly upset customers into raving fans and repeat buyers.
2. Develop a reputation for good customer service.
If a customer believes you offer good customer service, they assume they’ll be taken care of properly—even before they contact you. This leads to more positive interactions between you and your customers.
Plus, a reputation for good customer service increases your sales conversion. Why? Because people assume you’ll help them if they have a problem. They don’t worry about you disappearing with their money and leaving them unsatisfied.
How do you build this reputation?
I personally like to use testimonials from past customers that highlight our great customer support. We display these testimonials where other customers will see them—especially on our support page.
Here’s an example from Champion Energy. It’s prominently displayed on their customer care page:
Do you think this would help sway potential customers to using Champion Energy?
3. Get ahead of customer’s questions with a FAQ page.
Sometimes good customer support can be as simple as having the answer your customers are looking for already answered.
An FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) page is effective (and a time saver) because your customers can get an immediate answer without having to contact you and wait for a reply.
Plus, a comprehensive FAQ page will also have a positive impact on your conversions…
You see, many customers have questions that need to be answered BEFORE they decide to purchase—or not. By addressing the most common questions and concerns on your FAQ page you have a better chance of converting visitors into buyers without the assistance of your support team.
Once you have a FAQ page set up, don’t forget to improve it over time. As new questions and concerns come up, add them to the FAQ page. Also, be sure the questions and answers are easy to browse so customers can find what they need quickly.
Here’s an example…
One of my products needs UPC codes. I wasn’t quite sure where to start. The detailed FAQ page below was very helpful and I’ll likely order my UPC codes from this company:
4. Create a knowledge base (when a FAQ page isn’t enough).
Many companies offer a knowledge base, which is more detailed than a FAQ page. A knowledge base often consist of short, informative articles that answer your customer’s most common questions and objections.
For instance, Apple has created a knowledge base to help keep their customer support in check. Here’s how they describe their knowledge base:
“Apple’s official technical support database. Contains over 15,000 articles related to product specifications, reference documentation, and Apple and third-party…”
Here are just a few of the references from their knowledge base:
This allows a customer who wants instant answers to find almost anything they need! This also means they can make a purchase without needing to talk to a support agent.
Remember, just like the FAQ page, it’s important to continue to grow your knowledge base as new questions and concerns are raised.
5. Write canned replies that can easily be customized.
Let’s say you get the same question three times every day. Do you rewrite the answer three times a day? If you do, you’re wasting time and energy.
Instead, why not write a killer canned reply? Then, instead of rewriting it every time, customize it for each question.
Here’s an example:
I’m sorry to hear that ComfyEarrings are giving you trouble—they are a bit tricky to insert the first time. The good news is, once they’re in, you can leave them for as long as you want. You can even sleep in them!
Check out this page for some helpful hints: ________
Please let me know if you have any questions.
Remember, we do have a money back guarantee so if you give them your best shot and find they still won’t work for you, you have nothing to lose. Just send them back and we’ll refund your money.
This simple reply frees up our support staff to tackle more questions faster. Plus, there’s no need to have a professional sales person in support because we address any objections head on by reminding them of the guarantee.
Most customers find this answer very helpful and they write back with responses like this:
By creating pre-written replies to the most common questions you can quickly copy and paste your response.
Just be sure to customize your replies. Here are three ways to quickly do that:
- Use their name. In fact, leave blank places in your canned replies to prompt you to add their name.
- Mention what they mentioned—like their frustration—so they know you care.
- Have a professional copywriter craft your canned replies. This will help with conversions because a professional copywriter will know how to save a sale and tackle objections before they come up.
Remember, writing replies as customers contact you may seem easy, but it eats away at the time you could be using for other things, like getting more sales.
Give 110% From Your Support Department
If you’re selling a product or service, customer support is probably an integral part of your business. (If it’s not, you’re probably losing money.)
By getting customer support under control now, you’ll be able to manage your time properly and keep your business growing.
Plus, as your business grows, new support staff members will be easier to train with processes and canned replies in place.
So what about you?
- It seems everyone has a customer support story to share, whether it’s bad or good… what’s yours?
- Have you developed any techniques to help manage customer support? We’d love to hear about it…
Comment below to join the discussion.
Read other Crazy Egg articles by Christina Gillick