You’ve painstakingly guided a prospect through the sales process, turned them from lead to potential to account, and successfully closed the deal. Your work is done? Not so fast. After all, you can’t watch a house you’ve just finished building fall over and declare it a job well done.
After-sales service can be just as important, if not more, when it comes to building your company’s reputation and sustaining customer relationships and brand loyalty. It’s all part of providing ROI to the customer.
After sales service can take several forms, from warranties to maintenance and repair. Sometimes it’s included in the price of purchase, sometimes not. Nevertheless, it is important to provide stellar customer service not only in the doing, but in the timeliness of your response, to ensure the good reputation of your business.
This, however, can be difficult. Depending on the size, some companies can deal with an upwards of 100 customer issues every day, and tying them all back to the customer, the person assigned to the issue, and the product involved, and the status of the issue, as well as ensuring the issue was resolved properly can be a headache.
Issues falling through the cracks can spell doom for your company. We live in the age of social media – a bad review on someone’s blog or an extended rant on Facebook about your terrible customer service can easily drive droves of potential customers away from your company and into the arms of your competitors.
This is where cloud-based sales applications (like Second CRM) with built-in helpdesk ticketing systems can be powerful tools for managing customer issues by helping you keep track of everything.Here are some of the features in Second CRM that can help you with customer service:
- Productivity tools
You can automate repetitive tasks and reduce the time agents spend on simple cases so they can spend more time solving complex issues.
- Agent FAQ
Maintain an agent FAQ console, with an interactive interface that brings together requests from every channel to find answers and help customers quickly.
- Auto capture requests from multiple support channels
Customers would be sending queries through numerous channels such as phone and email to voice their opinions about your product.
- Self-servicing customer portal
A customer portal enables self-service by your customers as they can submit a service request in case of any issues. They can login to the customer portal to track updates on the service request and even update their contact details from the customer portal as required. It helps you maintain a proactive customer relationship.
In this example, a customer has bought a piece of software from your company and has reported it not working, requesting service. This is what the summary review of such a service request looks like.
You can find out how to create a service request here.
An administrator can set up a workflow to remind the assigned user about the service request at regular intervals, or if it hasn’t been updated in a while. This helps to make sure service requests aren’t forgotten and are completed in a timely manner, freeing up valuable brainpower to actually solve the problem rather than being used to just remember it.
Another useful feature is the list view in Second CRM. You can filter service requests by their status and priority level to properly identify which cases need to be resolved immediately and which can afford to wait.
This would save you from angry customers demanding to speak to your supervisor, and also allows you to more accurately estimate when a service request will be resolved.
FAQ’s here aren’t like those you put up on the website so that customers don’t have to keep emailing in with questions. These stay internal, and are shared with other Second CRM users in your network to save time.
Say you’ve solved the above “Software not working” issue. It turned out to be a pretty simple issue. However, you’ve now received another service request from a different customer with the exact same problem, which indicates that it may be a fairly frequent problem.
You can convert the resolved service request into an FAQ by clicking on [Convert to FAQ] in the summary view of the service request.
This is what your new FAQ would look like.
Users can add additional information to the FAQ by going to the Comments tab on the right and adding their comment there.
Administrators can set permissions so that only closed service requests may be converted into FAQs. This saves users from any unnecessary confusion and makes sure the flow of information remains smooth and unobstructed.
Creating FAQs saves the company time and money by facilitating the sharing of information between users, so that employees don’t need to waste time and manpower solving an issue that has already been solved before.
You can learn more about service requests, service contracts and FAQs at the Second CRM User Manual.
Keep thorough records
Keeping a well-oiled helpdesk ticketing system means keeping as much information in Second CRM as possible. It’s your record of everything you’ve done and plan to do to close the deal, and maintain good customer relationships. Add notes, descriptions, track emails, social interactions—everything. This way, you won’t lose track of which stage of the sales process you’re in with a customer, and it makes it much easier to generate new records without having to waste time inputting the same information all over again. Reminders also keep you in the loop about what needs to be done on any given day, giving you peace of mind that you have everything under control.