When we consider a tech brand to make a purchase from or to subscribe to its services, we make our choice based on what we are going to be getting out of the deal, and on the price. Very rarely do we consider what would happen if something went wrong or we had an issue that needed to be dealt with. Customer service is an important yet often overlooked aspect of how a brand communicates to potential customers.
But it is one that has a bearing on how the brand is able to operate in a connected world and in line with its quest to build relationships? How important is customer service really important when settling on a brand?
One of the reasons why customer service is important is because it is often the subject of reviews. Reviews are important – not just for the business to attract more customers who trust their peers’ opinions, but because positively reviewed companies seem to do better on search engines than negative ones. They perform 10.3% better than those without positive reviews. In fact, 90% of US customers consider reviews to be a factor in their purchasing decision. Customer service is often the feature of a review because good customer service that solves a problem and bad customer service that elicits an emotion both create strong opinions in customers.
Reviews are important for many types of businesses. For instance, well-reviewed tourist attractions and travel destinations are often featured on aggregate sites such as Airbnb and TripAdvisor. 96% of travellers read TripAdvisor reviews on hotels. So, a positive review leads to more exposure. Meanwhile, as BetJaw shows with its analysis of the best online casino sites, customer service is considered a factor before players choose a provider to join, and other players’ reviews of this could affect their decision. Even business software has been known to be chosen based on its customer service credentials. For instance, email marketing tool MailChimp has a strong reputation for customer service and providing customers with support from the start.
Examples of good customer service, both on and offline, are often shared on social media, which helps boost a business’s credentials further. Social media exposure is harder to control and plan than other PR considerations and there is only one way to try to make it happen: to give good customer service. Said customer service doesn’t have to be delivered through social media, but it can be taken to social as an example of a staff member going above and beyond, of offering something not strictly in the usual remit for exceptional cases, or of helping out the community in a surprising way.
Good customer service not only makes customers feel looked after to improve their brand’s image; it can also lead to further boosts to the company. Good customer service can lead to a positive review, which has its own set of benefits, while exceptional customer service can often be shared and go viral on social media. This can lead to further positive opinion for the brand, which can lead to more sales.