No matter what industry you are in, there are two important pillars that make a business sustainable: the quality of your products and services, and customer satisfaction. Rigorous research and development can ensure the quality of your products and services, but customer satisfaction is relatively trickier: it involves people, and we all know how difficult some people can be.
That being said, word of mouth can make or break your business; hence, it is not enough to leverage on your products alone to sustain your company, you need to ensure your customers have a good experience in order for them to return and for them to recommend your business to other people.
In this article, we will cover what makes up an ideal customer experience, what a typical customer experience training looks like, and how to incentivise customer experience training using egift cards.
While there is no textbook science or a set of ‘how-tos’ of achieving customer satisfaction, there are certain things that make up a good customer experience.
Instead of immediately launching into a full-on presentation of your best-sellers and current promotions, listen to what the customers have to say.
By paying attention to your customers’ needs, you not only make them feel seen and understood, you will also be able to learn more about their situation and serve them better. All businesses, regardless of industry, sell solutions.
For fast moving consumer goods, they are solutions to daily inconveniences; for healthcare, they are solutions to discomfort, for luxury items, they can be solutions to insecurities.
When you are attentive to your customers' needs, you are able to meet them better by tailoring your products and services to their situation. thus meeting their expectations of coming to you in the first place!
Another way to show that you are about their needs is to provide post-purchase support. This includes giving them options to contact your company should any problems arise and giving them a warranty period for their purchases.
This means not to immediately recommend the most expensive product or most costly service for the sake of your company’s profit. It is to prioritize solving the customers’ problems, and giving them the option to choose what really suits their needs.
For example, a customer comes in with a problem that can easily be solved with a mid-range product. Instead of directing them to the premium products, be honest and inform them that an average product would suffice.
Then only introduce them to the more premium series, educate them on the differences, and let them choose for themselves.
Hard-selling your products will only make your customers uncomfortable and make you seem greedy and dishonest, which is never a good idea if you want returning customers.
Hence, do not try to sugarcoat or exaggerate everything in hopes of generating higher profits as this will only create a bad customer experience and does not help in sustaining your business.
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This applies especially to online businesses. The e-commerce industry relies on the consumers’ need for convenience - they want to save time by not traveling to the physical store, waiting in line to check out the items, and then having to travel back home.
Hence, it is important for your customer service team to be fast and accurate in their responses in order to satisfy and retain your customers.
All the above require soft skills such as communication and quick problem-solving; and fortunately, soft skills are definitely teachable! A typical customer experience strategy training for staff would consist of the following:
An overview of an ideal customer experience.
Introducing your team to the importance of a good customer experience allows them to understand why they should strive to achieve it. It is also recommended that you align the introduction to your company’s goals and values so that your team is well-aware of them; knowing that you’re working towards an ultimate goal and understanding the reasons behind the goals makes the job more fulfilling than just following instructions by rote.
1. Product and company policy knowledge
In order to sell the right products to match your customers’ needs, your employees should have a thorough understanding of how the products work and explain the mechanisms to the customers.
Otherwise, no matter how attentive, transparent, or timely your salespeople are, they will likely fail at clarifying your customers’ doubts and meeting their needs.
Giving your customers the confidence that they made the right choice choosing you is one of the foundations of customer satisfaction; hence, product training is one of the most basic, if not most crucial, steps in customer experience management training.
On top of that, make sure your employees know your company policies well enough to prevent them from making mistakes such as giving the wrong refund policies or false guarantees. It might look like a minor case of misinformation, but the customer might still feel cheated and accuse you of selling something under false pretenses.
2. Effective communication
It might sound like one of those skills anyone can have, but to be informative, concise, while being warm and welcoming is a skill most cannot master.
We have very knowledgeable people who will come across as abrupt and blunt, and sometimes we have polite employees who do not know how to properly explain how the product works.
So a good customer experience training should always include effective communication: the customer should feel like they are in safe hands to solve their issues without feeling like they are bothersome or dismissed.
3. Tactfulness and sensitivity
This complements effective communication. Being tactful means you have the comprehensive skills to understand client needs without needing them to explicitly say it. Of course, it would be easier if customers are able to clearly identify their wants, but some do not, and the customer service team should be able to pick up on the social and contextual skills and help them solve the issues at hand.
4. Negotiation skills
Last but not least, while we have to make sure our customers are satisfied, it should not come at a loss for the company. A good customer support team should be able to come up with win-win solutions that will make the customers happy and benefit the business. During this part of the training, you can prepare some scenarios of what typically happens when you have difficult customers, and come up with several suggestions on what they can say or do to make things work out well.
When implementing new initiatives, asking for feedback is important to ensure continuous improvement. Giving corporate prepaid cards or corporate services gift cards in exchange for gathering feedback from existing customers is a good way to know if your customer experience strategy training actually worked.
If feedback is negative, be sure to listen to your workers’ perspectives as well to know the full story before coming up with a solution. Sometimes, it could actually just be the customer’s problem. However, if you receive complaints continuously, perhaps it is time to reevaluate the training given.
One way to make your training more receptive is to incentivise your training with corporate e-gift cards. At the end of your training, consider rewarding the top performers with your corporate branded gift cards by way of recognition. You can also implement a reward system by awarding corporate gift cards for the Most Knowledgeable Employee, Best Communicator, Most Tactful Employee, and Best Negotiator of the Quarter.
You can tailor the awards to your company values, or even get creative with the awards using custom corporate gift cards or corporate branded gift cards!
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Our wide array of selections range from Amazon corporate gift cards to corporate visa gift cards, so you are spoiled with choices if you’re looking to purchase gift cards online for people of all age groups and interests.
If you are set on training your team to give the best customer experience and grow your company, have some online gift cards at hand to incentivise and motivate them.
Our digital gift cards Australia are swappable with some of the most coveted brands in the country, so you can buy gift cards online without worrying about whether or not they suit your employees’ tastes. Contact our team at GIFTA now to learn more about how we can help you buy corporate gift cards or send a gift card online now!