Phone Etiquette Mistakes with Customers

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Just as businesses strive to make great first impressions in person, first impressions over the phone are just as crucial. When customers call in for assistance with a service or to voice a complaint, companies need to be ready to handle all situations appropriately. Employees answering customer calls should be trained to avoid some of these frequent customer service mistakes. Please note the top 3 errors.

Mistake 1: Complicate the Call

Today’s customers are more experienced, knowledgeable, and tech savvy, but that doesn’t mean they know everything. There are also customers that may not understand the company’s services or products and need a thorough rundown. If the customer is confused by a complicated explanation, they may hang up frustrated. Ensure that anyone answering the phone can keep things clear and simple. This way, all customers can have access to the same level of service no matter their level of understanding.

Mistake 2: Rely on the Customer to Follow-Up

Instructing customers to send a follow-up email or call to the company after a long phone conversation can be deterring. This creates additional work and wastes more of the customer’s time, especially if they haven’t had the best experience on the phone. Businesses should be able to solve a number of issues over the phone and be the ones to send any emails or make additional calls to customers. This shows that the company puts customers first and that they are willing to reach out to make sure everything is resolved. Having the customer be the one to reach out again is not only going to frustrate them, but it may send the message that the company doesn’t want their business. If a customer feels that you are wasting their time by giving them more tasks to accomplish, they are going to think twice before calling again.

Mistake 3: Mistreat the Customer

This one may be obvious, but it’s sometimes forgotten. New customers, recurring customers, satisfied customers, and angry customers should be treated with the same amount of respect. The customer on the other line is a person, not just a sale. Put yourself in their shoes and think about how you would like to be treated in their situation. Everyone has bad days, but employees should never let their frustrations out on a customer calling in. Customers keep businesses going and mistreating them can lead to bad reviews or feedback, which can hurt business in the future.

Do you have any additional customer service tips? We’d love to hear them!


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