Why It’s Important to Reduce Customer Service Response Time
If you ask any successful business owner what the key to their success is, they will likely tell you that it’s providing great customer service. That’s because happy customers are loyal customers, and loyal customers are the bread and butter of any successful business.
When it comes to providing excellent customer service, there are only a small handful of skills that are as important as availability and response time. Forcing your customers to talk to a machine every time they need an issue resolved can alienate them from doing any business with you. Untimely responses can also be a major turn-off and usually result in bad reviews and zero recommendations.
Today we’ll talk about why having quick response times can help your business provide excellent customer service and improve your bottom line. But before we dive in, let’s talk about customer service metrics.
Importance of Tracking Your Customer Service Performance and Response Time
Tracking average customer response time is the single most important metric required to have a better understanding of how your customer support team is performing. By taking a closer look at how slow or fast your team is responding to customer inquiries, you can identify all the bottlenecks and areas of your business that need improvement. This can greatly improve your customer service experience and will more than likely result in repeat business.
Meeting and exceeding customer expectations is essential to the longevity of any business. It has been proven time and time again that good customer service is one of the key differentiators between businesses that succeed and those that fail.
How to Calculate the Average Response Time?
To calculate your company’s average response time, simply divide the total number of customer queries by the total number of responses. This will give you the average time it takes for your team to respond to a customer inquiry. For example, if you receive 100 customer support tickets in a day and your team responds to 50 of them, your average response time would be 2 hours per query.
The smaller the number, the faster your team is responding.
The speed of your customer service has a direct correlation with customer satisfaction. Poor customer service response times can have a major impact on your business, both in the short and long run. In the short term, it can result in customers getting frustrated and taking their business elsewhere. In the long term, it can damage your company’s reputation and make it harder to attract new customers.
Why is Responsive Customer Service Important for Small Businesses?
Small businesses often have a personal connection with their customers, which is why providing responsive customer service is so important. Building and maintaining this connection is essential for relatively small companies because it can help them win over new customers and keep the ones they already have. Customer service quality is also one of the most important branding factors that can make or make a small business.
When customers feel like they are being heard and that their concerns are a priority, it builds trust and creates a sense of loyalty. This is why it’s a must for small businesses to respond quickly to their customers, regardless of the inquiry.
How to Reduce Customer Service Response Times?
If you have an in-house customer service team, you need to make sure that each customer service representative has the tools and resources they need to do their job efficiently.
Below are some useful tips that can help you reduce your customer service response times:
Assign different levels of email priority based on the urgency, complexity, and most importantly, the time needed for your team to respond. Then, proceed to tag all of your incoming emails accordingly. This way, your team will have a better idea of which clients require their immediate attention, and which ones can wait.
Templates Can Be a Lifesaver
Your customer service department will regularly receive the same questions over and over again. Instead of writing the same reply from scratch, consider using standard templates that can be slightly altered for each customer. Templates will significantly speed up your response time and will maintain a coherent “voice” when handling customer inquiries.
Have an FAQ Section on Your Website
One of the best ways to improve your average response time is to reduce the number of incoming inquiries. You can do this by determining what are the most frequently asked questions about your business and providing answers to these questions on your website. Most customers will look for an answer to their inquiry in the FAQ section first before they send customer service requests.
Invest in Customer Relationship Management Software
As the number of customers you do business with grows, so will the number of incoming queries and requests. To efficiently handle all those inquiries, you need to invest in customer relationship management (CRM) software. There are many great CRM software options available on the market that will help you keep track of all your customer interactions in one place.
If Everything Else Fails, Call for Help
Handling an overwhelming number of inquiries on a daily basis is very taxing and challenging for any customer service professional. Business owners and customer service managers need to widen their perspectives and look for potential solutions outside of their department.
Let AnswerHero Alleviate the Pressure on Your Customer Service Department
One of the best ways to supplement your in-house customer service team is to outsource some of your customer service functions, particularly your phone answering needs. When you have a reliable and responsive live answering service handling your calls, you are setting up your business for customer service success.
At AnswerHero, we understand the importance of providing responsive customer service. That’s why we offer a wide range of live answering services that are designed to help businesses of all sizes reduce their customer service response times. Our goal is to improve your brand image, boost your customer service satisfaction, and increase your sales and revenue in no time.