Top Telephone Customer Service Tips

Customer service is an essential part of any business. However, many companies are unable to provide good customer service through the telephone, resulting in a lower standard of business. Use these important telephone customer service tips in order to improve customer service standards.

First, begin the conversation the right way. Many customer service representatives fail to set up a good conversation. While this does not mean that the conversation has to be long, representatives should take time to build rapport. Callers will want to speak to a human being and not a machine so while it can be beneficial to have a script, allow customer service representatives to vary it slightly and make it natural for them. Also, ensure that customer service representatives speak clearly. Many people have trouble communicating on the phone and hearing the person on the other line. Proper diction and pronunciation are key.

Secondly, make sure to listen. All telephone customer service tips rely on effective communication. A huge part of the communication process is understanding wthat the customer wants or needs. Determine what they are trying to achieve through the call before responding or making suggestions. In some cases, they may need to be transferred to a different department or take steps on their own. No matter what the call, always find out what the customer wants.

In some cases, it may be necessary to put a customer on hold. If they have to be put on hold, be sure to inform the customer why they are being asked to wait and also explain how long they could be on hold. Offer to call them back quickly if possible or if the hold is going to be an extended period of time. If calling back a customer and leaving a voicemail on their machine, be sure to use the voice mail effectively. Also, properly compose the message before delivering. Rehearse any announcements before recording them and leave contact information or a method for them to find answers if they have any questions or concerns.

No matter how good the customer service skills, there will probably be difficult calls and customers who refuse to be pleased. In these cases, try to think of why the customer is acting in a certain way and avoid taking their tone as a personal injury. Avoid losses of temper and instead, keep the attention on the plain facts. Try to get the customer’s agreement in order to move towards resolving the call.

Another one of many telephone customer service tips is to close the call correctly. Ensure the customer that any promises or assurances made can be fulfilled. End the call by thanking the customer and letting them know that their business is always appreciated. The ultimate goal should be the customer knowing that the service center is positive and helpful.

While using these tips may not always ensure that each customer will leave satisfied, implementing these strategies will ensure a better customer service standard. These methods emphasize clear communication and excellent service for every customer.

Stefanie Amini
is Specialist in Customer Success and chief writer and editor of I Want It Now, a blog for Customer Service Experts. Follow her @StefWalkMe