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Anatomy of a Good Customer Support Response

whisper

 

We’ve all experienced that same irritating customer support response. The one that’s automated, generic, and completely unhelpful. It doesn’t even address the question you asked, and treats you like you’re a faceless individual rather than an actual human being. Responses like that always raise a few questions: Did they even read your email? Is there even somebody there on the other end? Does it even matter?

Support responses like these are the last thing you want to come from your support team because it sends a clear message to the person who needs help: no one cares about the problem. There’s no faster way to lose a customer than to make them think you don’t care, and unfortunately, it’s an easier impression to leave than you think.

Leaving a negative impression doesn’t necessarily come from a support agent who just isn’t getting the job done; rather, the form and content of your responses are a major factor in how your customers feel. In the rush of a crowded ticket queue, it’s not uncommon for generic responses to come off as indifferent and disingenuous. That’s why it’s so important to make every interaction with customers as authentic as possible.

This is not an easy thing to do, especially when the desk queue is loaded with inquiries. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to make sure that your sincerity and concern for the customer are always communicated.

 

Express Empathy
Every good support response starts with a bit of empathy. “I’m sorry you’re having this problem.” “That must be frustrating.” Empathy goes a long way in being helpful to the person awaiting a response on the other end.

 

Restate the Problem in Some Form
In order to restate the problem, you need to make sure you read through the email, perhaps multiple times, to make sure you understand the problem. Once you’ve got a aolid grasp on the the problem, restate it in your response to help ensure that you are on the same page as the consumer. If there’s confusion about what the problem is, then clarify before making an assumption.

 

Positivity
There’s no words to express how absolutely necessary positivity is to a good response. It doesn’t matter how simple or messy the situation may be; the slightest hint of negativity will cause major damage. Always remember that the goal is to help customers, and positivity goes a long way, even if there’s a disagreement.

 

The Right Words
There’s an important thing to remember when dealing with customers: You’re the product expert, and they are not. Keep this in mind when you choose your words. It’s important that you choose language they can understand, and don’t make assumptions about their knowledge of terminology.

 

Solve the Problem
This is the most important part of the response. Give the consumer the knowledge they need to solve the problem they are having. If a solution does not exist, or you need to check with another person on the team, communicate what you are doing to try and fix the issue and be sure to follow up.

 

Be Thorough with Processes
If helping a customer means guiding them through steps they need to take, make sure those steps are broken down thoroughly. Every detail should be included to ensure the process is painless. Don’t skip over a single step, no matter how simple it may seem.

 

Always Offer More
The more you help, the more they’ll know you care. So if you can point customers to other resources to help them, they’ll be very happy. Webpages, PDFS, online forums, and FAQs are wonderful opportunities to show a customer just how much you want to solve their problem.

 

Quick Response
It’s important to remember that the people writing in to support are frustrated and unhappy, and they’re relying on you to make it better. The longer that takes, the less of an impact your help will make. This means it’s crucial to respond quickly to their issue. The best practice for response time is under 24 hours.

 

Good customer support is expected and can be the differentiator between you and your competitors. Follow these guidelines, and you will be sure to delight and wow anyone who contacts support for help!

 

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