How to Satisfy Customer Needs

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How cus­tomers choose to reach out to your busi­ness is an impor­tant piece of data to note. The rea­son why they’re reach­ing out is even more impor­tant. If cus­tomers are con­tact­ing ser­vice and sup­port via tele­phone, email, social media, or web chat, it means they need assis­tance. Once a cus­tomer makes the decision—and effort—to con­sult a ser­vice or sup­port rep­re­sen­ta­tive, his or her expec­ta­tions for ser­vice alter. Prior to reach­ing out, it is likely that cus­tomers attempt to trou­bleshoot and research on their own unsuc­cess­fully. Now, not only do they want a solu­tion, but they also desire to be acknowl­edged, lis­tened to and under­stood, and treated with respect. How employ­ees respond to cus­tomers who are expe­ri­enc­ing dif­fi­cul­ties with prod­ucts or ser­vices, or who just have gen­eral ques­tions, will dif­fer­en­ti­ate your busi­ness from com­peti­tors, and be a key fac­tor in cus­tomer satisfaction.

The secret to suc­cess is to do the com­mon things uncom­monly well.
– John D. Rock­e­feller, Jr.

Cus­tomers Need To Be Acknowledged

Cus­tomers need to know that their requests or con­cerns are impor­tant, and will be taken care of. Employ­ees can quickly build rap­port, and acknowl­edge cus­tomer impor­tance, by open­ing the call with a friendly greet­ing and a cheer­ful tone of voice that expresses a will­ing­ness to serve.

Cus­tomers Need To Be Lis­tened To and Understood

Cus­tomers need to know that they have been heard and under­stood. How employ­ees demon­strate their under­stand­ing is essen­tial to pro­vid­ing great cus­tomer ser­vice. After cus­tomers describe their rea­son for call­ing, encour­age employ­ees to para­phrase what cus­tomers say, and use words that express empa­thy and a sin­cere desire to help.

Example:

Cus­tomer: I fol­lowed the instal­la­tion direc­tions, but I’m not get­ting the screen mes­sages that the man­ual says I should be getting.

Employee: You’re fol­low­ing the instal­la­tion direc­tions, but it’s not work­ing? OK, let’s walk through it together.

Cus­tomers Need To Be Treated With Respect

Each cus­tomer wants to be treated with respect, and regarded as a very impor­tant per­son – not as a prob­lem. How employ­ees phrase responses and their tone of voice can make or break a suc­cess­ful inter­ac­tion. Cus­tomers are gen­er­ally not as well-versed in prod­uct or ser­vice knowl­edge as employ­ees. Be sure employ­ees use the most sim­ple terms to describe prod­ucts or ser­vices, and repeat instruc­tions as many times as nec­es­sary to guar­an­tee cus­tomer satisfaction.

Suc­cess­fully sat­is­fy­ing these three human needs is a proven method to increas­ing cus­tomer sat­is­fac­tion and cus­tomer loyalty.

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