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Boost Online Sales with Effective Customer Service

by: Sarah Joson

Monday, July 16, 2012 | Outsourcing News |

Useful Customer Service tips

Online sellers have an advantage over businesses that do not have online presence.  Apart from having access to a larger market, the former can make use of various tools such as social media and even old-fashioned ones like email marketing. However, one factor remains crucial to both business types and that is customer service.

Customer service affects the way customers perceive a business, and it doesn’t just stop once a product has been purchased. It can be an aftersales process that can influence future transactions. For online merchants, this means their businesses rely heavily on contact center agents as it is up to them to close a deal and increase revenue.

An article by Wendy Shooster, posted at MultiChannelMerchant.com, shows five customer service tips for online merchants:

Always be ready for inquiries.
Having someone who’ll attend to a customer’s inquiry whether via chat, VoIP, call or even on your social media accounts can help lessen opportunity losses. This would also mean that these channels should have staff on standby to promptly reply to potential customers.

Customer service is a continuous process.

Marketing trends come and go, but a good way for companies to make themselves noticed or gain recall is a sound customer service operation. Customer service is a huge factor for improving customer experience and increasing the number of patrons. It’s something better or more efficient to offer to customers who can be easily swayed by attractive ads online.  

See which works well for you: internal staff or outsourcing.
If budget is an issue, outsourcing will be a business owner’s best bet because most of the online channels will be a 24/7 operation and capital expenses will be better spent on core processes. One thing’s for sure though, local and internal call center agents will be more familiar with the brand and company’s goals as they have easy access to its history and culture.

Look into other issues as well.
Let’s say your business is in fact boot strapped - that doesn’t mean you have to fixate yourself on costs alone. Kate Legget, Senior Analyst at research and consultancy firm Forrester, said other things should be reviewed when planning to outsource. These are the efficiency, consistency, and standardization of a business’ customer service operation.

Team up with a service provider that will help the company grow.
Keep in mind that the outsourced staff will carry out the brand and mission of a company. Customers will identify them as people who are associated with your company, so whatever they do will instantly reflect on your brand. Find an outsourcing partner that is easy to work with and is willing to make adjustments according to the needs of your company.

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