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A product or service experience is a composition of many factors. Let’s take internet service as an example here. Suppose you have recently moved to a new district, and are looking for an internet service provider in that area. Two kinds of companies come up in the list of the best ISPs upon initial research. When you browse the website of company A, you come across wonderful offers that perfectly combine higher speeds with lower prices. On the other hand, when you check out company B’s website, you see average internet plans that you can find in any other area. So, like a conscious consumer, you dial company A’s customer service number, and what do you hear? A grumpy agent on the other end of the line, who takes a lot of time to process your information and grunts at your valid queries before hanging up on you. This traumatic experience scars you, and you hesitantly dial company B’s customer service number only to hear a well-mannered representative efficiently respond to your queries and even give you ample discounts on top of your chosen plan.

So, what do we learn from this? That while a product or service in itself may be great, if the customer service doesn’t live up to that greatness, then a business will only lose a lead instead of gaining one. This is why shrewd internet companies invest doubly in their customer service departments to raise their conversion ratio and get a unique edge in the market. For instance, RCN customer service checks all the boxes when it comes to delivering an exceptional customer experience. For a business in today’s era, customer experience is everything. Since a customer service team is in direct contact with users, unlike other departments of a company, it can completely turn the tables around, either contributing to profits or adding to the losses. If you’re wondering what’s the difference between good vs. bad customer service, then stick with us and you’ll find out.

Wait-Free Problem Solving vs. Inexpert Babbling

Good customer service representatives are experts in their field. They have in-depth knowledge about their company’s product or service, and a crisis-response guideline, which helps them meet any kind of customer query, request, and concern in a moment. Whereas, bad customer service agents are clueless in a crisis, lack the information about their company’s offers, and babble about when a customer asks them to process something in a hurry. We’ll continue with the example of an internet company, here, to illustrate this point further.

Let’s say company X faces an outage in an area due to a technical malfunction. So, naturally, its customers pick up the phone and give an earful to the customer service representatives. The good agents not only handle the crisis well, advising the users to settle down and wait it out as technicians repaired the cables in their area, but also offer them gift cards as compensation. Whereas, the less-skilled agents keep on transferring the customer calls to their superiors, making the already anxious customers wait extensively and risking cancellation of service. Therefore, how a customer service team manages a crisis is a critical win-or-lose point for a business. The representatives should stay calm, collected and inform the customers responsibly instead of making poor choices.

Customer-Centric vs. Money-Centric

Nowadays, customers have the power to move entire market trends. Their say can either make or break a company’s backbone, and they know it. They feel entitled to a wonderful experience, and if a company doesn’t deliver, they have the choice to discard and move on to the next best competitor in the biz. This is why successful organizations make their customers the #1 priority. Not only that, but customers are also smarter than before. When they shop, they can instantly sniff out a company’s real intention – whether it cares for them or the profits they bring to the company’s pockets. The latter case dissuades them from creating authentic relations with the company, and these relations are really important in the long run, from a sales point of view, since happy customers shop again and again from the same company they’re satisfied with.

Speaking of satisfaction, a good customer service team can make the customers feel valued by listening to their grievances empathetically, stepping into their shoes, and proactively providing a resolution to their queries. On the other hand, a bad customer service team gives them the impression that they are nothing but sources of revenue. As a business owner, you should hire agents that have a sharp listening ear and an even sharper common sense.

Happy Agents vs. Distressed Agents

The tone is everything in customer service. Agents come across all kinds of customers on a daily basis. Some are kind and inquisitive, while others are rash and loud. This is the reason why it is one of the most difficult and exhausting jobs in the world. A good customer service representative keeps a stable, professional, and friendly tone throughout the calls. They don’t give a harsh retort upon an angry request, and neither do they shy away from taking responsibility for the company’s failure. Whereas, bad customer service representatives lose composure and let their tone be dictated by the kind of customer they’re speaking to, which has an unhealthy effect on the company’s sales. How can you ensure that your customer service agents remain calm and render a spectacular customer experience? By keeping them happy with incentives and wonderful company policies. Happy customer service equals happier customers, after all.

Wrapping Up

Customer service can change the overall impact a product or service has on customers. How? Well, a good customer service team can deliver a heavenly customer experience, while a bad customer service team can easily turn it into hell for both the users and the company. It’s important to learn the difference between the two approaches, as mentioned in this post, so you can create the best outcome for your company, and stay away from the worst one.

Photo by Patrick Tomasso on Unsplash

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