By Guy Sheetrit

In the early stages of running a business, companies seem to be very conscious about making sure that their clients get the best service. As the company grows and the client base expands, focus shifts to increasing revenue and acquiring more clients that the quality of customer service erodes. Customer service is pushed to the sidelines and after a while the business crumbles.

I came across some interesting statistics to prove how detrimental it is for your business to ignore the importance of continuously improving customer service. Bad customer service has led to 66 percent of B2B customers and 52 percent of B2C customers from buying the company’s products.

Bad customer service also attracts negative reviews which can destroy a business. Word of mouth is so powerful such that 88 percent of customers are influenced by customer service review before making a decision to make a purchase.

If quality customer service is crucial to a successful business, then it is important to do something about it. Oftentimes just a slight change in the running of the business can do wonders to the company. Here are some ways you can get started.

1. Listen to customer feedback and immediately take action.

The reason why you didn’t think customer service was important in the first place is because you stopped listening to what your customers are saying. Now’s the time to make a change and start listening.

Only 5 percent of customers complain to the company when they are not satisfied with the company. But that 5 percent is enough to give you enough insight that can help you fix whatever is hurting your customer service delivery.

Read customer reviews and see what they are saying about your business and your product. A good place to look for what your customers are saying about your business is to take a look at social media. Social media is one of the fastest places where people are able to easily share their thoughts about something. You can run a couple of surveys to get deeper insight of the thoughts of your customers.

Make sure you take notes of the feedback and check for common pattern and address the problems immediately. Once you’ve done that, resolve to make collecting customer feedback a priority in your business.

2. Get your staff in check.

As your business grows, you may not be able to personally deal with every client. That’s why you have to employ extra hands to help you offer services to your audience. But where your staff does not represent your company values or implement the measures that will help boost efficient customer service, then you are bound to get bad results.

No one likes to be served by a rude staff or someone who is insensitive to the clients’ needs. This is a major turn off for customers. Make sure that you get your staff in check and that they don’t display a horrible attitude towards your clients.

Enlighten your staff on the reason why they should provide high quality service and how important it is for the company. You can also encourage your customers to tell you about what they think about the staff who attended to them. This will help you know who exactly is implementing your new customer service policies. Motivate your staff by rewarding the most loved staff. This will make sure that all are more eager to treat the customers better.

3. Be more responsive to your clients’ enquiries.

If there’s anything that people hate the most is to not get an answer to their enquiries. It is normal for clients to expect a quick response. When you don’t meet those expectations, they start to become dissatisfied with your business.

Swiftly answer client messages, emails and social media comments. Clients want answers and you need to make sure you reply them. Remember to be friendly in your response. Don’t ignore the messages and comments you get on social media, even when you the messages and comments are negative. You major focus is to give value at all times.

4. Go the extra mile when offering your service.

Bad customer service breaks the trust of your clients and potential clients are scared away from patronizing you. To redeem the situation, the most effective step is to do something that will help build your client’s trust. One good place to start is to go the extra mile in everything you do concerning your business.

There are many ways to go the extra mile. Focus on giving more value. Let them know about your new offers and how it will help them. Show them different ways on how they can use your product to improve their lives. Give a free tutorial. Whatever you do, ask yourself, “how can I go further to be of help to my customer?”