In our increasingly-accelerated business environment, your competitors are probably at this very moment trying to win over your business from you.
You may think your customers will always be loyal to your products or services, but I’m afraid I have to burst your bubble: with more and more products and services being launched every day, customers these days easily change brands at the drop of a hat. That is, of course, unless you can make them stay by working on your customer trust!
And as it is your call center agents who communicate the most with your customers, it is they who are thus best positioned to build customer trust. In this article, I’ve collected a few tips on how your agents can build trust with customers. Read on and empower your team with these great tactics!
Agents often talk to angry customers on the phone, trying in vain to calm them down. Needless to say, it’s not possible to build trust with angry customers!
Of course, the last thing call center agents want to do is to deal with angry customers. And this is where empathy can make all the difference. Instead of adopting “we apologize for the inconvenience”-type phrases, encourage your agents to put themselves in their customers’ shoes and reassure them that they know what they are going through.
By conveying meaningful empathy, your agents will be able to build trust with customers by showing them that they actually care for them. Check out our previous article on how you canteach empathy to your agent team.
Call center agents often find themselves talking to customers who struggle to communicate their issues. In such cases, agents have no other choice but to rely on active listening skills, trying to figure out what customers really want to say, and what their problems really are.
Encouraging active listening quickly pays off when it comes to customer service. It can help agents create connections, handle difficult customers and even uncover up or cross selling opportunities.
For example, using phrases such as “I understand” reassures customers that they are listening to them and paying attention to their issues. In addition, active listening skills help agents read between the lines and even offer up/cross selling opportunities based on customers’ needs.
There’s no question, customer service is the lifeblood of business. In fact, it is customer service agents who more than often represent brands, as they are the ones who communicate the most with customers.
So, if you want your customers to have a positive picture of your business, make sure your agents always stay positive during customer interactions, even during problematic situations.
As mentioned above, try and encourage your agents to put themselves in your customers’ shoes and react to their issues in a positive manner. In fact, a positive attitude will always help agents build trust with customers.
Of course, there are those customers who can be very hard or almost impossible to deal with, and sometimes it can be more than your agents can handle to stay in the frontline when confronted with phone rage. So, if you see one of your team getting close to having a meltdown, encourage them to take a short break to blow off steam.
Rely on knowledge
Sure, acquiring soft skills is essential in order to communicate effectively with customers. However, without proper knowledge, it won’t be enough. There’s no point in being empathetic, positive and a good listener if your agents don’t have the knowledge required to effectively solve customers’ issues.
In fact, there’s no better way to build trust in a customer than solving their problems effectively. In fact, assigning unprepared agents to answer calls does more harm than good.
Therefore, always make sure to allocate enough time for your agents to acquire the knowledge they need in order to best serve your customers.
We have already talked about the importance of personalized customer service in order to build customer trust. One thing is certain, the customer care industry is growing rapidly, and personalized customer service has become an important factor in this growth.
Of course, personalized customer service starts with agents building rapport. For example, agents should greet customers by their name and speak to customers with respect at all times.
Furthermore, technology such as data analytics allows you to better understand your customers’ behaviors and needs, and thus make your customer service more personalized. For example, encouraging your agents to make customers aware that they are familiar with their previous interactions and purchasing history is a great way of developing rapport, and thus building customer trust.
Ensuring customers trust your brand can literally make or break your business. Make sure you put our tips into action and make sure your agents focus on increasing customer trust!