In traditional customer service, customers are the ones who notice issues about your products and services. They contact you, asking you for answers for their problem. But how would it be like if you, as a business, would contact them first in order to prevent them about a possible issue that may arise? This is a technique that can make a difference between good and excellent customer service. It’s called proactive customer service.
Proactive customer service is an approach in which businesses make the first step in helping customers. In other words, they do not wait for people to contact them with problems related to their products and services. They look for potential issues and ways to solve them before customers come asking for help.
Basically, the main aspect in this approach is who makes the first move: the company or the customers. If people are most often the ones who do it, you fall in the category of companies who use reactive customer service. In this approach, customers contact companies with problems and support representatives provide them solutions.
When you are looking for potential issues in your products and services, you are constantly working on their improvement process. You may discover if what you are offering has some weak points and can focus on strengthening them. This can help you avoid the situation when angry customers are calling and asking for solutions.
You may also find out if you are dealing with issues that are out of your area of expertise. Whether we are talking about the inability to make online payments or your website not being available to customers from certain countries, there may be issues when you need to get specialized advice. It can give you an idea of what you need to do to improve your offerings and grow the business.
When you are the only one who knows about a problem, you have more control over the situation. Because you do not have any angry customers calling, you can focus all your attention on finding solutions.
You decide what is the best way to announce your customers that they can encounter a problem with a product or service. Calling them is a more personal approach and may show that you care about their experience and you take full responsibility for what can happen.
From the customers’ point of view, proactive customer service can be described as a thoughtful action. They feel that somebody cares about their issues and they appreciate it. Also, being noticed about a possible problem may save them precious time and energy.
Customers that are most likely to remain loyal to your business are the ones who are satisfied not only with your products and services, but also with your customer care department.
Proactive customer service can surely bring great benefits to your business. Here are 3 ways that can help you integrate proactive customer service in yours as well.
One of the most important elements of customer service is to give people what they are looking for. In order to satisfy their needs better, it is essential to find out what it is that they want. And there is no better person to tell you this but them.
Asking feedback from your customers can give you a more clear idea of what makes them happy, what they dislike and on what you need to focus on.
You can gather this information by:
How customers perceive your business is definitory for you. Observing what they share about your business online, you will be able to identify the values and beliefs they associate with you.
Social media is a great place to start. How they are speaking about your products and services, what kind of comments they are writing and what private messages they are sending to you are good starting points for your research.
Let’s say that your eCommerce website will go under scheduled maintenance. You can announce your customers one week before the maintenance starts and how much time it will last.
Proactive customer service can be a great way to tell your customers that you care about them. Being one step ahead can make people appreciate your business and give them another strong reason to stay with you.