Your Most Important Customer Service Skills List

Quality customer service is the holy grail of business. Once you have it, it seems to have the power to reveal all the secrets of success. However, providing perfect service isn't always easy. While searching for excellent customer service skills and competencies is relatively new, many CEOs would contend that it's as elusive as the mythical Holy Grail that sparked the Crusades. No matter how many customer service skills assessment surveys you send out, customer psychology remains a mystery.

Thankfully, researchers have been collecting data on customer service satisfaction for years. Unlike the search for the Holy Grail, the search for quality customer service requires a more detailed roadmap, and it all starts with the people you hire. Based on the data, here are the top customer service skills your reps need

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1. Persuasive Presentation Skills

Think about the most persuasive speaker in your organization. Are they a salesperson? Most likely, the answer is yes. Persuasion has long been recognized as an essential sales skill, but it can also be invaluable to your customer service. Every day, your reps turn problems into solutions and smooth customers into loyal brand evangelists. Think they don't need to be persuasive to get the job done? Believe it or not, 74% of consumers say they spend more with a company due to a positive service experience - a whopping 14%. It's that effective. So make sure your sales reps can speak confidently, maintain a positive attitude and provide compelling arguments that lead to conversions.

2. Empathy

No list of good customer service skills is complete without empathy. Empathy is the ability to understand the emotions of others and to understand their point of view. How does empathy become a vital service skill? Consider that 70% of the buying experience is based on how the customer feels about how they were treated. It has nothing to do with whether the issue was resolved, whether a refund was issued, or how much time was spent - at least. It doesn't relate entirely or mainly to those issues. Business people are used to thinking about the bottom line, but the bottom line in the minds of most customers is not financial; it's financial. It's emotional. Emotions are more important than facts, plain and simple.

3. Adaptability

When you deal directly with the public, your day will be very different. People are different. Did you know that 60% of your customers will change how they contact you based on where they are and what they are doing? That means you'll receive inquiries via phone, email, social media, and even face-to-face - sometimes from the same customer. Fortunately, no matter what channel you use, a good CRM can meet this challenge by integrating work order sources and making customer information available. Customer service representatives need the same flexibility to respond to situations in whatever way the customer currently prefers.

4. The ability to use positive language

If your customer contacts you, it's likely because they have a problem. But despite the customer's anger, frustration or defeatism, the sales rep needs to remain positive. It's OK to empathize with the customer. It's a key component of quality service - but stay as upbeat as possible. Use positive language to steer the conversation toward a positive outcome. Focus on solutions. Thank the customer for their patience, understanding, and value of loyalty.

5. Clear communication skills

This may seem obvious, but you'd be surprised how many customers have difficulty communicating with their customer service representatives. 33% of customers say that answering questions effectively is the essential skill a customer service agent can have. Being vague, inattentive, or using vague language can be the root of many unsatisfactory customer experiences. Your agents can be the most understanding, professional, and positive people in the business, but they must also be able to communicate well with your customers. Hire great communicators and commit to training everyone on your customer service team.

6. Self-Control

To borrow a well-known cliché, working in customer service is like a box of chocolates: you never know what you'll get. One minute it could be an angry customer, the next, it could be a perplexed person or a very patient customer who turns around and criticizes your company on Facebook. In a world where a negative social media post about your company has as much impact on a buyer's decision as five positive posts, this is a big deal. With the same stress and anxiety as customer service, your reps need self-control - even if your customers don't. They must remain calm when attacked, positive in the face of pessimism, and professional when the customer gets personal. When a customer lashes out at a sales rep, there are few consequences for the customer. However, the consequences of not having self-control when interacting with customers are often irreparable.

7. Take responsibility

Just because you solve a customer's problem doesn't mean they will stay, but how you solve it is just as important as the solution you provide. The key is to take responsibility for the customer's care. Your customer service representatives are on the front lines of satisfaction, but how many of them are the source of the problem? Very few. However, they can be held accountable for the way solutions happen, and 29% of customers say the ability to handle requests without transfer or escalation is one of the essential skills for reps. This is a big deal because 70% of customers who leave the company say they would have stayed if their issue had been resolved in one rather than multiple interactions.

8. Patience

When being yelled at, insulted, and rudely rushed is just part of your day, it's like playing Russian roulette whenever you pick up the phone or otherwise greet a customer. But keeping your cool is critical to quality customer service. According to a study by the University of Toronto, a lack of patience can make doing difficult things (like demeaning an angry customer) much more difficult. It can also prevent you from enjoying life, and if you think dealing with unhappy customers is a pain, wait until they make your entire department irritable. Instead, breathe. Realize that this person's anger has nothing to do with you, but you can turn their day - and their problems - into something positive.

9. Listen effectively

All of your agents could do their jobs better with more training, and an easy way to start is to teach your staff how to listen effectively. Listening skills are more than just turning up the volume on your headset. It's about taking the time to understand your customer's problems and then letting them know you're paying attention. Often, simply rephrasing the question in your own words and asking the customer if it sounds right is enough to make them feel like you know them.

10. Time Management

Time: We could all use more of it, couldn't we? Unfortunately, it's the most limited resource we have, so all we can do is manage our schedules effectively. It's easy to get flustered or frustrated when you're interrupted, and it's easy to let the phone ring a few more times or let emails linger longer in your inbox. But that's terrible news. Eighty-three percent of online shoppers will abandon a purchase or move their business elsewhere if they don't get help within five minutes. Putting customers on hold, even for a few minutes, can cost your company business. Instead, prioritize quick response times. Simplify your systems so that customer information and reports can be updated quickly and easily. And make sure your representatives have plenty of time in the day to complete their tasks, so they don't have to choose between helping customers and performing other duties.

Use customer support software which contains an efficient knowledge base, ticketing system Minimal cost to enhance customer experience.BClinked 

Rapid deployment, simple enough but effective customer support system