5 New Customer Service Rules to Serve Like Zappos


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Successful customer service means meaningfully connecting with customers on a level that is more than just doing business, but about people helping people.

It’s not enough to smile, be polite, and be pleasant. You have to understand what is customer service. Customers want to connect on a personal level, but demand innovation and action. These 5 customer service rules ensure that you connect and deliver an exceptional customer service experience each and every time.

Zappos Customer Service

1. Have Attitude. It’s not your fault, but it is your problem.

At Zappos, everyone is encouraged to find a new way to solve their everyday problems. Many of our problems, and all of our customer problems are not our fault, but it is our opportunity to deliver an exceptional customer service experience by taking it upon ourselves to make things right. That type of attitude and vision for customer service is contagious within a team.

Be positive, realistic, but especially optimistic about working with customers today.

2. Be Warm. Be real and be personal.

At Zappos, you’re encouraged to be yourself, yes, even that little weird aspect of you is encouraged because it’s who you are. Be polite, helpful, and effective at connecting with customers, then add your personality and you’ll be much more effective at delivering a memorable, lasting customer service experience.

3. Teach! – As many times and in as many ways as customers need it.

It doesn’t matter that you’ve said it 3 times already. It just means that you’ve been ineffective at the last 3 times you tried explaining it.

We all learn through different means. Some of us learn better by seeing, others by hearing, and many of us by doing.

Our customer service team at DigiCert are experts at helping server administrators install SSL certificates. Even when dealing with these data tech-heads, we still deliver service through the various learning methods. Not quite sure how to install an SSL certificate on a Microsoft IIS7-based server? We’ve got your covered! The DigiCert support instructions lets customers read the instructions, see a video walkthrough, hear a customer support agent talk you through the instructions, and if you REALLY want that extra help, you can call them 24 hours a day and have someone do it with you.

4. Ditch corporate-speak. You are a human, not a corporation.

How often do you find yourself saying “What a memorable experience! That person was very corporate-like! I loved it!” No? Me either. We don’t connect emotionally with the cold, corporate, generic personality. Each customer interaction is a relationship building experience.

People are loyal to people, not corporations.

5. Stop policy preaching. No one cares about policy, they care about getting things done.

Many of today’s customer service managers would be great bible pounding, hell-fire and damnation preachers when it comes to company policies and the rule book. Can I get an amen?

Real customer service isn’t about breaking the rules, it’s about delivering solutions to take care of customer problems. Stop emphasizing what you CAN’T do, offer options for what you CAN do for the customer right now.

“No” is the worst answer you can ever give to a customer. Instead of saying no, offer options on what can be done.

Choose today to deliver real service to customers.

You have the chance to make a difference today. Yours is the opportunity to make lifelong, loyal customers. No one else in your organization has a great of chance as you do.

Choose an attitude of service to customer. Be personal, be real, be human with customers. Choose not to just talk at customers, but to teach them so that they connect with you and the service you offer. Use your words wisely to build relationships. And focus on real action. Customer service is an art and a science, it’s about creativity and activity that we deliver an exceptional Zappos-like customer service experience.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Flavio Martins
Flavio Martins is the VP of Operations and Customer Support at DigiCert, Inc., a leading provider of enterprise authentication services and high-assurance SSL certificates trusted by thousands of government, education, and Fortune 500 organizations. Flavio is an award-winning customer service blogger, customer service fanatic, and on a mission to show that organizations can use customer experience as a competitive advantage win customer loyalty. Blog: Win the Customer!


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