The 7 Levels Of Customer Service Every Business Should Know
Discover the essential levels of customer service that every business should master. From availability to follow-up, learn how to provide exceptional service and build customer loyalty.
In this blog post, we will explore the 7 levels of customer service that every business should know in order to create a positive impact on their customers and build long-lasting relationships.
Levels Of Customer Service
Whether you are starting a new business or improving an existing one, these levels are the cornerstone of providing exceptional customer service.
Being available to the customer is the basic foundation of any positive interaction with them. If your business is unreachable, there would be zero opportunity to serve their needs. Lots of company “hotline numbers” greet their callers with voice prompt instructions to wait in line. Be different.
Give your customers various ways to reach you. Aside from service hotlines, make use of live chat and email to ensure that you are available to a broader range of people.
It is extremely important to give your customer the attention that he/she wants or needs. Greet the customer warmly and use their name if you have it (or politely ask for their name). This sets the tone for the conversation and instantly builds rapport.
While answer scripts are in common, it is important for customer service representatives to avoid sounding mechanical when using them. It could make people feel that they are not given proper attention.
Listening and empathy
At this level, you pay close attention to the customer's words, tone of voice, and body language. Avoid interrupting them and allow them to fully express their concerns. It is also helpful to acknowledge the customer's feelings and put yourself in their shoes. Use phrases such as "I understand how you feel" or "I would feel the same way in your situation".
Let the customer know that their feelings are valid and that you care about their experience. This can be done by saying things like "I completely understand why you're frustrated" or "I appreciate you bringing this to my attention".
The problem solving level is where you drill down into the customer’s concerns and try to come up with a resolution. However, you will only be effective in this level if you’ve been successful in the previous levels of customer service.
For example, if you haven’t been able to give proper attention to the needs of the customer and have not listened to their concerns, you’ll have a limited ability to solve their problems. Listening will help you determine the underlying cause of the problem, assess the situation, and formulate the best course of action.
Sometimes, it takes several interactions with the customer before their problems are resolved. During this entire process, it is important that you remain responsive to the customer. Keep track of the status of their concern or ticket, and ensure there is a continuity of communication.
At this level, the essential things to have are 1) consistency, and 2) documented information relevant to the customer’s concern. To remain responsive, you and your business should constantly uphold its commitment to never give up on the customer’s problem until it is resolved. You also need to keep a record of previous interactions with the customer to track the status of its resolution.
Despite your best efforts, customers can sometimes become frustrated if their complex issues are not resolved quickly. In such instances, they might express this frustration at the customer service representative and may even become unpleasant.
When this happens, remain calm and professional. Stick with the issue and do not take it personally. Never throw any hint of sarcasm towards the customer, and instead focus on coming up with alternative ways to solve their problem.
Being professional also means that you keep your promises. If you say that you will call back at a certain time for a more definitive solution, then you have to deliver. Doing so will help you gain the respect from the customer because you also respected his time and expectations.
After the issue has been resolved, follow up with the customer to ensure that their concerns have been addressed and to check for any further needs. This level is where the customer is retained for the long term, so never ignore the follow up stage.
Summary Of The Customer Service Levels
Every level of customer service requires patience, creativity, and strong communication skills. It is important to stay unfazed with challenging situations, and to remain focused on finding a resolution that is in the best interest of the customer.
By understanding the various customer service levels, you can provide effective and efficient solutions that will help to build customer satisfaction and loyalty.