It’s often said that the customer is always right. And while this may not always be true, providing excellent customer service over the phone is crucial to the success of your business. In a world where more and more businesses are moving to telephone-based customer service, it’s important to make sure you’re doing everything possible to provide a positive experience for your callers.
For many businesses, telephone-based customer service is a key component of their overall business strategy. Customer satisfaction can be one of the most important factors in determining whether or not your customers will continue using your products and services (and recommending them to others).
How To Provide Excellent Customer Service Over The Phone
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The quality of telephone customer service is often more important than other aspects of a company’s operations because it has such a direct impact on how people feel about doing business with you.
When callers are treated well by friendly telephone representatives who take pride in serving them well, they tend to view the entire organization as being more professional and trustworthy – which ultimately leads to increased sales for you!
What is Phone Etiquette, And Why Is It Important?
Telephone etiquette is the practice of using good manners while communicating over the phone. Proper telephone etiquette includes greeting callers, listening attentively, speaking clearly and slowly, and ending calls politely.
There are a few reasons why telephone etiquette is so important:
- First impressions are key: When someone calls your business, they form an impression of you within seconds. How you sound over the phone will play a big role in their overall perception of your company. If you’re rude or unprofessional, they may not want to do business with you.
- The caller can’t see you: Unlike in person, callers can’t see how you’re reacting or what body language you’re displaying. They rely solely on the words that come out of your mouth to understand what you’re saying.
- It is difficult to communicate when there are background noises: When telephone calls aren’t handled properly, it can negatively affect customer service and call center performance. Therefore, telephone etiquette is critical for customer retention and sales revenue.
Best Phone Customer Service Tips
Here are 20 Essential Steps To Follow When Providing Customer Service Over The Phone:
- Be prepared to provide information about your products or services, as well as pricing information.
- Answer the phone in a timely manner, and identify yourself and your company.
- Use common terminology so that the caller will understand you.
- Be aware of your tone of voice and keep it positive, even if the caller is angry or frustrated.
- Stay calm, no matter how upset the customer becomes.
- Take notes during the call to ensure that all details are captured.
- Keep the conversation personal, addressing the caller by name.
- Don’t interrupt your customer. It’s hard to convey how crucial it is to be patient and allow your clients the time they need to fully express their concerns or issues on the phone, even if you already know what they’re going to say. Interrupting people while they’re talking sends the message that you aren’t interested in what they have to say, which is considered rude and unpleasant.
- Listen carefully to the caller’s questions or concerns, and ask clarifying questions if needed.
- Don’t give incorrect information or make assumptions about what the caller is asking.
- If you are unable to answer a particular question, be sure to take the caller’s contact information and have a specialist call them back as soon as possible.
- Don’t forget to use your resources, such as the internet, your manager, or colleagues, to help you find answers to questions you’re not sure of.
- Keep customers informed about the status of customer requests or questions, and let them know if you have to transfer the call so they don’t feel like they are losing track of their issue.
- Avoid using telephone jargon when talking with customers on the phone. Examples include: “Have a nice day”, “Thank you for calling/speaking with me today”, or “How can I help you?”.
- Don’t discuss personal issues while on hold with a customer, because this creates an awkward situation and makes it seem like your time is more important than theirs! Be professional at all times – even during breaks! You never know who might be listening. If necessary, take a short break before returning back to work so that everyone knows what’s going on without having any long gaps in the conversation.
- If you’re having a difficult time understanding the customer, ask them to slow down or repeat themselves. This will help ensure that there is no miscommunication and that both parties are on the same page. Sometimes it’s helpful to put customers on hold so that you can better address their inquiries. When doing this, be sure to let them know why you’ve had to place them on hold and how long they can expect to wait.
- In order for customers to feel valued, it’s important to genuinely listen to what they have to say – even if you don’t have an answer right away! Thank them for their call once they’ve finished speaking and let them know that you’ll get back to them as soon as possible.
- Never argue with a customer or belittle their concerns. If you are unable to resolve a dispute, offer to put the caller through to your supervisor.
- Thank customers for their business, and ask them to recommend your company to their friends and family.
- Always end calls with a courteous goodbye, and thank the caller for their time.
In the workplace, having good phone etiquette is critical. The first impression your client forms of you are frequently over the phone. It’s important to make sure that your telephone communication abilities are up to snuff since how you interact with them might determine whether you gain or lose a customer!