Customer expectations have changed, but one thing has always stayed the same. Your customers expect consistent, personable, and friendly customer service
In fact, 97% of consumers and 98% of contact center managers say customer service interactions impact whether consumers stay loyal to a brand. Friendly customer service impacts customer acquisition, customer loyalty, and referrals. How you communicate with your customers matters. And so many businesses falsely believe that technology can completely replace the customer experience.
But we know that just isn’t true.
Why Does Friendliness in Customer Service Matter?
A dedication to friendly customer service helps your business make happy customers, build loyalty, and grow! Friendliness helps you connect with your callers beyond simply the product or service you provide. It empowers you to build real relationships with your customers so they’ll stay loyal to your brand through thick or thin. Friendly customer service doesn’t just create one-time customers, it creates brand loyalists who will spread the word and come back for more.
How to Provide Personable, Friendly Customer Service
1. Treat Your Customer Like People, Not Numbers
Friendliness is customer service is more than just your attitude. It’s creating personal customer service experiences. It’s treating your customers like a person, not just another incoming call or email. According to Entrepreneur, “Customers should never feel like a number in a long list. Instead, they should feel as if they’re involved in a one-on-one conversation.” Building customer loyalty will enhance customer retention and create a positive attitude between the business and the client.
If you’re wondering how to be more personable, you’ve come to the right place. We recommend you:
- Assign a single CSM or point of contact for your customers
- Celebrate their wins with them
- Check-in with them regularly
2. Treat Every Touchpoint Like an Opportunity
Friendly customer service is key to a good experience. 95% of consumers say customer service impacts their brand loyalty, naming easy access, self-service, and professional agents as important factors.
Friendliness in customer service helps you overcome challenges with your customers. They’re more likely to stay loyal through outages or bad experiences if they know they can count on the quality of your service. They’re also more likely to recommend your business and come back for more!
Every call, email, form, and thank you page is an opportunity to provide a memorable, friendly customer experience. Even one bad experience can cost your business. The first impression may be the biggest deal, but every impression matters.
3. Learn About Your Customers
Of course, building long-term relationships with your customers extends beyond friendly service in the moment. It’s relationship-building! You need to get to know your customers and show interest in their successes and experiences. Learn about their business and their families. Understand what’s important to them so you can personalize their experiences. Bring up what you’ve learned in future communications. Send them a birthday card or a congratulations after a big launch! Treat your customers more like a partner, and the loyalty will build.
4. Follow Up with Your Customers
So you provided a friendly customer experience. Maybe they called in, and you solved their problem. Or you upgraded their service. Maybe they were even in your office. Think the experience is over?
Not at all! Friendly customer service isn’t a one-touch solution. 65% of consumers have needed to follow up more than once to get their questions resolved. Follow up with your customers. Ask them about their experience and actually care about their answer. A week or two after providing them with a solution, check in and see how it’s going.
Your customers will remember that you cared enough to follow up.
5. Get Feedback: Make Your Customers Feel Like a Priority
It’s important that your customers don’t feel like an afterthought. You should make your customers feel like a priority on the phone, over email, when you meet with them, and through every interaction. Ask for feedback, listen to it, and actually implement it.
You’re making a difference for your customers, but they’re also making a difference for you.
Want to see how your call handling ranks?
Our interactive Call Handling Workbook will help you understand the quality of your call handling, how it impacts your business, and how you can improve!
6. Go the Extra Mile for Your Customers
Can you remember a time a business went above and beyond to ensure that you were a satisfied customer? You aren’t a business without your customers. You need them to succeed, so go the extra mile to make them happy.
This means responding quickly, personalizing their experience, and providing proactive support (at Abby, we call this the Abby Proven Process).
Here are some easy ways to go the extra mile:
- Take the time to walk a customer through a solution, instead of just sending them documentation
- Send your customer a handwritten congratulations or thank you note
- Provide a customized solution to their needs
- Take responsibility when something goes wrong
- Make using your service as easy as possible for them
- Personalize your communications
- Once again, be friendly!
7. Be Honest with Your Customers
Friendliness in customer service is more than a nice greeting and a compliment. It also means taking responsibility. If you didn’t deliver what you promised, or something went wrong, don’t try to hide it. Instead, be upfront and honest with your customers. Let them know what happened, how you’re addressing it, how you’re preventing it from happening again, and that you’re sorry. Keeping lines of communication open and always being honest with your customers is key to providing excellent customer service and building loyalty.
8. Be Flexible
Strive to meet your customers where they are. Is there a customized solution that you can provide? Do they need extra touchpoints? Extra resources?
Most businesses have a customer service strategy in place. A template customer service reps work from. But some customers may need more help, or maybe less! Adjust to fit your customers’ needs. Call them instead of sending emails if they prefer the phone. Your processes are built for the standard customer, and not every customer will be standard.
9. Respond Quickly
The average response time for a customer service request is 12 hours and 10 minutes. You can beat that, easily. Friendly customer service is how to talk to your customers and how you prioritize them. Respond as quickly as your processes allow, and then work on speeding things up. If you need to, consider employing a receptionist service or live chat service, so there’s someone to answer when your customers come calling.
10. Create Consistency Across Your Employees
Customers remember when their experiences are inconsistent. Everyone at your business, from your CEO to your sales team and receptionists, should all embody the same dedication to providing your customers with high-quality experiences. Build a culture of personability and dedication to high-quality customer experiences with a consistent mission and core values, then make sure your employees stick to it!
How to be More Personable and Provide Friendly Customer Service with Abby Connect
Friendly customer service lies at the core of building strong and lasting customer relationships. With Abby Connect’s commitment to providing exceptional service, our friendly virtual receptionists go above and beyond to ensure every interaction is characterized by warmth, empathy, and a genuine desire to assist.
When you choose Abby Connect for your business answering service needs, you can rest assured that your customers will receive the friendly and attentive treatment they deserve. The impact of friendly customer service extends beyond a single interaction, leaving a positive impression, fostering customer loyalty, and contributing to the overall success of your business. Our trained customer service experts will answer, transfer, take messages, screen calls, answer FAQs, schedule appointments, and more.
Experience the Abby Connect difference today!