Customer Support Software Providers Should Have the Best Support
How Customer Support Software Companies should make Customer Support their Top Priority
We recently had a prospective customer tell us “their customer support is awful!” when referring to their current software provider. This was shocking, as the entire premise of our business is based on customer support, so how is that not a priority in their own company?
It would seem obvious that companies who provide customer support software should make “great customer support” one of the pillars of their business. After all, if you don’t practice what you preach, how will your customers find you a credible partner in helping their customers?
Yet often it seems that even companies whose goal is to help other people’s customers start to flounder when it comes to their own customer support. So what’s the issue? What is the next step from being a company that develops customer support software to being a company that develops customer support software and is loved by their customers?
A lot of work goes into making a software-as-a-service app. You need engineers to develop the app, and marketers and salespeople to make sure people use it. And, of course, you need Support people to answer tickets should problems ever arise.
As a software company, it’s very, very easy to focus on adding the next technical bell or whistle to your app, or on dreaming up the next sexy social media campaign. Training and supporting your support team often comes a distant last when it’s time to set your company priorities. It’s the same trap that many, many companies fall into – seeing customer support as a necessary cost, rather than the best tool available for customer satisfaction and retention.
Don’t fall into that trap. Customer support should be your company’s #1 priority.
What happens when a company makes customer support priority #1?
Let’s take a look at the classic example of a company that treated customer support as priority #1.
When founder Tony Hsieh started Zappos, he found himself floundering in debt, facing layoffs and imminent doom. A big part of the company’s turnaround (they later became profitable and were bought by Amazon) came when he realized that he wanted to be more than an online retailer. He wanted the company to be about something more meaningful than just selling shoes and clothes. He realized he wanted to delight his customers and give them a positive experience that they would forever after associate with the Zappos brand.
This commitment to delighting customers has made Zappos and customer support synonymous in popular culture.
How Your Customer Support Software Company Can Embrace Customer Support as a Mission
We can take a lesson from Zappos and other companies that do customer support right.
Put Customer Support in the Spotlight – It’s all too easy for your customer support team to become an afterthought. Don’t let that happen. Your customer support team is arguably the most valuable piece of the customer experience puzzle, so treat them accordingly. Give your customer support team accolades, and include them in big decisions. Let them know their voices are heard and that they are a valuable part of your company – especially when your business is customer support! They will, in turn, bring that dedication to your customers.
Train, Train, Train – Many customer support errors are the result of poorly trained customer support staff. Inadequate training can be disastrous for your customer support team in a number of ways. When your CSR’s don’t feel up to the job, they don’t perform well for you. And when they don’t perform well, customers with a problem – arguably the customers that need the most, highest quality attention – leave your company. This is one reason why Zappos’ customer support reps receive seven weeks of training. Companies that make customer support a key pillar of their mission understand the value of fully training each and every rep.
Don’t Skimp! – As we’ve mentioned in previous blog posts, customer support should not be an afterthought, or a cost to be cut when things get tough. You must allocate the proper resources (both financial and personnel) to ensure your customers are receiving an exceptional customer experience, all the time, every time.
Aim to Delight – When your customer support reps are well trained, feel valued, and are not overworked, they will go above and beyond for you – and for your customers. As a customer support software, this means they will exemplify good customer service to your own customers, who will in turn share what they’ve learned from you with their customers. And the world of customer support will be all the better for it! Who can argue with that logic?
At Team Support we believe in customer support as strongly as our customers do, and we strive every day to prove it with words and actions. How can we delight you today?
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