How customer service elevates your brand
Great customer service provision is so important for the sustainable growth of a company, even when we are not in the midst of very unusual circumstances. As the economy seeks to find its feet and move forward – into what might be a golden age for e-commerce – customer service is an element of your business you simply can’t do without.
E-commerce is still up by 50.4%
There can’t be anyone in marketing, or indeed in the country, who doesn’t already know how e-commerce boomed in 2020 under lockdown. In the UK, online spend has been steadily increasing year on year, but the unusual circumstances of the pandemic pushed more people to purchase online than we have ever seen.
According to the most recent figures from the Office for National Statistics:
“Online retail sales fell by 7.0% in July when compared with June, but the strong growth experienced over the pandemic has meant that sales are still 50.4% higher than February’s pre-pandemic levels.”
Yet, counter-productively, while e-commerce brands were experiencing the highest volumes for fulfilment of orders they have ever seen, we saw that some companies stripped back or even closed down this critical avenue of communication with customers.
Why customer service has never been more important
- It provides a personal touchpoint to build relationships with your customers
- It gives you the opportunity to turn a bad experience into a good one
- It can help turn browsers into customers who are looking for reasons to trust you
- It helps you nurture loyal customers who will turn into advocates
- Done well, it sets your brand above your competitors
Basically, providing customer service well is a winner all round. Making yourselves available to customers shows you care about their reasons for buying and any problems they have. You don’t want to be seen as the brand that took their money and ran.
So, why did some brands pull back when lockdown hit?
- No plan for scaling – they were unprepared for the rise in sales and therefore customer service communications.
- No plan for business continuity – lockdown had impacted upon their ability to work, so they didn’t have the resources available.
- Knee-jerk reaction – both the above factors created a perfect storm: as orders flooded in that needed fulfilment, brands were forced to focus on short-term needs over long-term sustainable business.
Granby has seamlessly continued to provide customer service for our brands as an element of fulfilment (3PL). This is partly due to having plans in place for all circumstances, including working from home, and the flexibility and scalability of our resources.
How to do customer service well
Your customer service provision should be accessible across all key channels your customers want to use, including social. Your tailored solution should include:
- Inbound customer care
- Outbound calling
- Promotional helplines
- Multi-channel customer service
- Web chat
- Order handling & processing
- Overflow solutions
- Data Cleansing
Don’t under-estimate voice
- Some customers are OK with live chat, others really want to speak on the phone.
- In the faceless world of shopping online, where fraud is a worry, being able to call directly is also a big trust indicator.
- Work with customer service experts
- Outsourcing your requirements means you will always have the right resources available, delivered by people who know how it should be done.
- Brand guardians aligned with your ethos and values
- Delivering an experience your customers will remember for the right reasons
- Unique bespoke customer service solutions in line with your requirements
- Resources include provision of dedicated advisors and bureau agents
- Scalable solutions that put your customers first
If you’d like to leverage customer services to add value to your brand, get in touch for a chat about your requirements.
Photo by Granby