Customer communication is so important these days because consumers want an increasingly personalized experience when they deal with a business. They don’t just want to buy a product, they want to open a dialogue and create a relationship with your business. Forging those strong relationships is the key to creating loyal customers that come back time and time again.
Unfortunately, a lot of businesses don’t really know how to improve communication with customers and they fail to build any kind of relationship with them beyond the point of purchase. The good news is, there are so many great tools available that can help businesses. These are the best tools for improving customer communication.
When you first start out and you only receive a small number of emails, you can probably manage things quite easily. But as your business expands and you are suddenly faced with a constant stream of customer queries, you need a better solution that helps you to keep track of things, which is where helpdesk software comes in. It helps you to manage emails at scale and allows you to tag emails to different customer service representatives and organize them into different groups depending on how far along the sales pipeline the customer is.
This helps with communication because you can ensure that customers are always dealing with the right person and you have a record of all previous interactions, so they don’t have to explain themselves every time they contact you. This all makes the customer feel as though they are a priority and creates familiarity between them and the customer service team.
Live Chat Software
Helpdesk software is a basic necessity for most businesses but it is starting to become a bit outdated because new tools are taking over customer service. Live chat is one of those tools and although helpdesk software is still important, email is starting to be replaced by live chat. It’s much better for your customers because they can head straight to your website and message a customer service representative. They will get a much quicker response than they would if they sent an email and the instantaneous responses make the whole process feel more like a real conversation rather than an email chain.
Live chat software also improves things for your customer service staff because they can deal with more than one query at a time and they can resolve things there and then. This means that you can scale back on the number of staff that you employ and make some big savings, all while improving communication with your customers.
When you are using live chat software, you can also use chatbots to respond to queries. These great pieces of artificial intelligence software can mimic a real person and provide information on basic issues. They won’t be able to answer more complex questions but they save a lot of time for your customer service staff, who often spend most of their day answering the same simple questions.
A Mobile App
If you don’t already have a dedicated mobile app for your business, you should seriously consider creating one. There are so many great benefits to having your own business app because it helps to increase brand awareness and acts as a great sales tool. It’s also a brilliant communication tool that helps you to build a relationship with your customers. However, creating an app that people will actually want to use can be tough and it’s important that you get the user experience right. Tools like Infragistics Indigo Design will help you to develop an app and run usability tests from the initial design stages all the way up to the final build stages. By building an app based on feedback from user testing, you can ensure that it runs perfectly and your customers will continue using it on a regular basis.
Once you have your app, there are a few great ways that you can use it to communicate with customers. Firstly, you can incorporate a live chat into the app so customers can message you directly without having to go through your website. You can also use push notifications to send people personalized information about deals and offers or any new features on the app. Although using live chat on your website is good, it’s better to use a dedicated mobile app because you have a direct line of communication with customers and they will always have their phone with them.
Messaging CRM Tools
CRM (customer relationship management) tools have been used in email for a long time but now there are more CRM tools available for messaging. Using messenger apps like Whatsapp or Facebook messenger is a great way to communicate directly with customers and it’s particularly good if you are trying to communicate with millennials, who are more likely to use messaging apps or social media than they are to use emails.
The problem with using messaging apps of any kind is that it’s difficult to keep track of each customer journey, which is where CRM technology comes in. It allows you to track and categorize different customers so you can clearly see where they are in your pipeline and which ones are closest to making a purchase. Once you start organizing your leads in this way, you can make sure that you don’t neglect any of your customers.
Call Center Management Software
Although live chat and messaging are the preferred communication tool for a lot of consumers, it’s still important that you have a traditional call center. Many people would still prefer to speak to a customer service representative on the phone, but large call centers do have a lot of issues. Long wait times, constant transferring and overcomplicated menu systems can frustrate customers and ruin their experience with your business. However, if you implement the right call center software, you can minimize these problems and make the whole process a lot easier for your customers. By directing customers to the relevant customer service agent as quickly as possible, you can focus on building a relationship instead of making the customer jump through hoops to solve their issue.
Customer reviews are more important than ever because the majority of people will check reviews before buying a product. Review platforms are also a great way to open a dialogue with customers because you can respond to reviews. It makes the customer feel as though they are being heard and their opinion is important to you, which is very valuable when you are trying to build a long lasting relationship with them. There are a lot of great third party review sites out there but asking your customers to go to a different site is inconvenient for them. If you want to encourage people to leave more reviews, you should build a review section into your own website instead.
Always display your reviews front and center on your website to show potential customers that you are proud of the feedback that you get and you prioritize the relationship with customers. Every time somebody leaves a review, whether it’s a good or a bad one, you should always leave a response. In some cases, you may need to craft a long response to address issues and complaints but if people leave positive reviews, a few lines thanking them for their feedback will be fine. That simple reply makes all of the difference to the customer and it only takes a few seconds.
Customer Survey Software
Reviews are one of the best ways to get customer feedback, but you can also ask them to fill out surveys if you want a more detailed insight into their experience with your business. Customer survey software makes the process of writing and distributing surveys a lot easier and it will also help you to analyze all of the data that you collect. So many companies make the mistake of collecting data and then not doing anything with it. If you want to improve your relationships with customers, it’s important to act on the feedback that they give you and customer survey software makes that a lot easier.
Customer Sentiment Tracking Software
It’s important to have good direct communication with your customers but it’s equally important that you know what they say about your company to other people. Customer sentiment tracking software is a great tool that gives you an insight into what people really think about your business. Every time your brand is mentioned online somewhere, you will be notified and the software will gauge the tone to let you know whether it was positive or negative. So many consumers will use social media to praise or criticize businesses and it’s important that you know what is being said about you. If you notice that there is suddenly a big increase in negative comments about your business online, you know that you need to do something to improve your relationships with customers.
Investing in these communication tools will make it a lot easier to build relationships with your customers and improve your business in the future.