When you’re working in customer support, you know that answering phone calls becomes the repetitive aspect of your position. A frontline worker typically is hired for their strong communication skills such as the ability to listen and convey information clearly and engagingly.
Customer service is all about assisting customers with their problems, answering any questions they might have, and helping them to use your service more effectively in a call. The success of customer service depends totally on how the staff who receive these calls handle them. Because these staff members are highly trained, they can handle calls in the most professional way possible. However, not all of them may be suitable for customer engagement.
Customer interaction management is not a simple thing to do, because different customers are different types. Hence, a customer interaction manager must be able to handle a large number of different types of customers. Every query and concern that you need to handle is different.
After the call, your main objective should be to make sure that the customer is satisfied with the call. A voice that is consistently friendly, warm, helpful, and professional will create a positive impression of your company. If you’re missing any of these qualities, you’re likely to drive customers to your competitors.
Effective Tips To Ensure The Best Customer Service Phone Etiquette Experience
1. Answer the call right away
If it’s part of your job to be immediately available to callers, you should be immediately available. It means getting rid of distractions and staying focused so you can respond to calls immediately. You don’t want to keep a customer waiting on the phone- just as you don’t want to lead a customer into a dead end such as voice mail.
If you’re physically present, ready to respond at a moment’s notice, this rule should be fairly simple to follow. However, we recommend that you respond within three rings to give yourself enough time to get into the zone and prepare for the call. If you pick up the phone right away, you might be unprepared.
2. Introduce Yourself at the Beginning of the Call
When you’re expecting a call from a customer, be sure to confirm who they are and whom they need to speak with. When you first encounter a new person on the phone, it’s polite to let them introduce themselves and tell you why they called. So, a side script might be of help to read a number and ask the caller to confirm it, but this isn’t a solid call-tracking strategy.
Hello. My name is [Your first name] and I am an employee of [Your company].” You can make a difference in how your customer feels by word placement. Even if the person on the other end of the line doesn’t need your product, they’ll appreciate your patience and friendliness.
3. Speak Clearly
Phone calls are a great way to speak with distant clients but are only effective if you have strong communication skills. For one, whomever you are talking to can only judge you based on your voice, since they don’t get to identify your body language.
When communicating with others, your goal is always to be as clear as possible. Project your voice without shouting to create a perfect projection of your voice. You want to be taken seriously and avoid being dismissed. A confident voice makes it more likely for a customer to believe what you say and feel confident in your ability to solve their problem. If you can’t hear or be heard, end the call and try again.
4. Use Speakerphone when Necessary
We all know how hard it is to hear the other person on the other end of a speakerphone. Using your hands to multitask makes it easier for you than when you try to use your voice. However, for those who are already located in a pricier apartment, it’s like trying to talk on the phone to someone at a noisy nightclub — impossible and frustrating.
Be sure to give your customers your full attention, and avoid distractions. Make sure you can track who said what at all times. When you’re on the phone, you may need to use speakerphone occasionally, such as when it’s with a group of people or when you’re troubleshooting. It may be appropriate to use a speakerphone at some times, but it’s always good to keep your hands free.
5. Listen and Take Notes
Just as it’s important for you to listen to your customers, it’s also important that you’re actively listening to them instead of just waiting for a chance to talk about yourself. Active listening is more than just hearing what they say; it’s basing your response on their input, not what you would say. Formulating a solution that meets your customers’ needs is a tough task, but it’s made much easier when you have a mold to follow.
It’s helpful to take notes during support calls so you can solve the same issue for other people. You’ll want to process your meeting’s minutiae, and notes will be immensely helpful. If you have an easy-to-use method for recording notes, it will be easier for you to understand each situation. It can be used as a training tool for new employees and as a way to keep everyone up to date on company procedures.
6. Use Formal Language
One of the biggest differences between professional and personal phone calls is in the language used. It might seem normal to use slang and colloquialisms when texting with your friends, but this kind of language can cause you to lose a customer for life.
You should always be thoughtful about how you treat people, especially when you’re communicating through a medium that is not face-to-face. If you don’t know what’s offensive, it’s best to use formal language. It’s okay to inject humor where appropriate, but never make a joke that could offend someone.
7. Remain Cheerful
Customers aren’t always in the best mood to buy, so you’ll need to be ready for any problem. Even though it’s tempting to get back at someone when they’re rude, it’s still important to be respectful. First, try empathizing with the other side so you can understand what motivates them.
By remaining positive and friendly, you validate the other person and make him or her more comfortable. If you are positive, it could help save the phone call from being a disaster. Your customer probably didn’t want to take time out of their day to call you, so you should try to be as helpful and understanding as possible. Making the call strong and memorable will help ensure that it will be returned and that it will close. That’s a win for you and your business.
8. Inform Before Holding or Transfering a Call
When you call for customer service, nothing is more frustrating than being put on hold. Waiting on hold is annoying, but it’s better than not knowing if you’ll get to speak with a real-life human being at all. But don’t just give up when you’re put on hold. Press for a resolution, and try to get someone in the same department you were in when you originally called.
In general, always ask the customer for permission before putting them on hold or transferring them to someone else. Explain why it’s necessary to have a plan in place for resolving problems and reassure them that you — or another employee — are going to get their problem solved swiftly. By being transparent with your customer, you can keep them happy while working on their project.
9. Be Mindful of your Volume
You may be so focused on your phone call with a customer that you’re barely paying attention to where you are, which can make you an easy target for violence. Working in a call center, you might hear a lot of noise. You always want to be mindful of your volume so you don’t disrupt the ability of your co-workers to speak to customers and get their work done.
If you have to speak louder due to a bad connection or a hard-of-hearing customer, simply step out of the room and speak with them separately. You want to give your employees the freedom to work how they work best, but that could lead to problems when they don’t complete tasks.
10. Respond to Voicemails
A customer might try to reach out to you through your company’s website or social media page after you’ve left work for the day. If you can receive voicemails, make sure to check for them often. If you have a lot of voicemail messages, it’s easy to miss some. But if customers have to listen through a lot of messages to get to yours, they’ll remember it.
When you start and end each day, check your voicemail. Avoiding customer support requests lowers your overhead and frees up time for product development. When you make good on your word to your customers, they’ll be more likely to come back, and you can focus on providing the best possible support.
These tips should allow you to collect information from callers with various levels of knowledge, and they can also help you to identify when a caller is having a hard time understanding the process.