5 ways better business communication can improve your customer service
On the surface, it might not seem as important as maintaining steady cash flow or training up new team members for the busy season, but good communication has a role to play in all areas of your business. Here are five quick and easy ways to improve your business comms to deliver the best possible customer service.
- Teach employees how to communicate from day one
Improving customer interactions starts from the top down. As the head of the business, it’s your responsibility to not only train up new employees (or teach managers how to train them), but to also show them how to communicate well – this means walking the talk in everyday interactions.
Having a communication manual will keep everyone on the same page. If you don’t have one yet, it’s well worth creating one. It doesn’t need to be comprehensive – just a couple of pages with all the key points in easy-to-read bullets will do. After printing them out or emailing them to every team member, it might be worth getting the whole employee base together for a training session on how business comms should be conducted moving forward.
- Review every touchpoint
With all your experience in the retail industry, you know better than most that even the smallest complaint has the potential to harm a customer relationship. And with the rise of e-commerce and social media, it’s more important than ever to monitor all your touchpoints.
Reiterate to your employees the need for solid communication across all platforms. This includes email marketing, e-newsletters, Instagram posts, Facebook updates – everything you can think of, as well as the interactions they’ll have with customers in-store.
- Provide real-time support
Now days, most customers prefer to interact with businesses online – and the same is true for retail employees.
If you haven’t already, consider a move to a real-time communication model. This goes beyond phone calls and allows for video chat, live chat, text messaging, etc. Customers have short attention spans, and if you don’t respond to their queries within a reasonable time may try and find a competitor who will. Embrace the instant-communication model and you’ll see an immediate difference.
- Let your customers play a part
Sometimes it can be easy to think about your customers as being on one side of the fence, while you and your employees are on the other. But for communication to work, it must flow both ways.
By giving your customers a way to provide feedback, you give them a voice to vent their concerns and celebrate your wins. You can’t get in front of every customer issue – no matter how proactive you are about business comms – but you can give them every chance to touch base about their needs.
Whether it’s verbal feedback given in-store or online communication methods like social media messaging and customer surveys (which can improve your marketing strategy), it pays to give your customers an open line to speak directly with your business.
- Create goals as a team
Every team member in your business wants to have a say – even if they don’t vocalise that need at every opportunity. Remember that your employees are invested in the success of your business, so it’s important they have a say in its future.
One way to achieve this – while still retaining authority over how the business moves forward – is to open the floor to new business goals. Getting your employees to offer goals for the team to achieve over the next year can build a cohesive unit that works together. And a well-oiled machine is one that improves their business communication skills naturally, which feeds into better customer service.
On online collaboration solution can provide staff with exactly that – a resource where they can share their opinions with their co-workers and managers, and contribute to an ongoing discussion about how the business can better communicate with customers and each other.
Get started with Deputy today! Try our free 30 day trial, to make loving your business even easier.
The information contained in this article is general in nature and you should consider whether the information is appropriate to your needs. Legal and other matters referred to in this article are of a general nature only and are based on Deputy's interpretation of laws existing at the time and should not be relied on in place of professional advice. Deputy is not responsible for the content of any site owned by a third party that may be linked to this article and no warranty is made by us concerning the suitability, accuracy or timeliness of the content of any site that may be linked to this article. Deputy disclaims all liability (except for any liability which by law cannot be excluded) for any error, inaccuracy, or omission from the information contained in this article and any loss or damage suffered by any person directly or indirectly through relying on this information.