What is the easiest way to make customers happy? Let them know their requests have been heard and that they will be taken care of –and then do it! Follow-through – the act of carrying out customer requests – is the final and most important step of successful customer service. Words without action are simply words. Customers want to see action, results, and proof that their requests have been heard and handled appropriately.
To effectively follow-through, employees must show a willingness to serve, accurately complete the request, and show value to the customer.
1. Show Willingness
Showing willingness to serve and support is easy to do, and one of the fastest ways to build rapport. Instead of responding with a non-specific “OK”, encourage employees to start sentences with phrases that clearly convey enthusiasm and eagerness to help. Here are a couple examples:
I’ll be happy to…
I can sure do that…
I can take care of that for you…
2. Complete the Request
This may sound obvious, but it’s best to meet customer expectations first and then perform procedural duties such as updating the customer’s file and scheduling follow-up calls second. Occasionally company procedure may not allow for this. If so, keep the customer informed by stating, “I’ll be happy to do that for you, but first I need to collect some information in order to complete your request.” Informed customers are happy customers.
3. Show Value
The final step in successful customer service is showing value. This step demonstrates the importance of service and support to the customer, and shows that your organization is committed to serving customer needs and requests. To effectively show value, explain how customers will benefit from the way their service and support situation was handled. Here are two great examples:
- To protect your privacy, we do not give out identification numbers over the phone.
- To keep your costs down, we ask that you have the work done at one of our service facilities.
Follow-through is essential to keeping customers loyal. Remember, “Great opportunities to help others seldom come, but small ones surround us every day.” – Sally Koch.