Empower Your Staff! Customer Service Tips for Startups

customer service tips for startups

Building a startup is an exciting yet demanding undertaking.  You have a long checklist of tasks to take care of to get your company up and running.  This includes hiring staff, finding investors, setting up office space and creating and selling products.  One area that can easily fall by the wayside during all this mayhem is implementing an effective customer service strategy.  But many don’t grasp how important customer service solutions are for startups from the very beginning.  Here are some advantages of good customer service, along with some customer service tips for startups.

Advantages of Good Customer Service Solutions for Startups

Before you take steps to implement a strong customer service strategy, it’s important to understand how your company will benefit from making customer service a priority from the beginning.  Here are the some of the advantages your company will gain:

  • You will get valuable feedback that will give you a better understanding of your user base, and allow you to develop products and sales strategies that fit their needs better.
  • It encourages your staff to take the focus off themselves and turn their focus to how their job can benefit the customer.
  • Good customer service interactions will encourage customers to spread the word about your company.  Likewise, customers are also likely to talk to others about a negative customer service interaction with your company.
  • Offering advanced customer service solutions is an effective way for startups to appear more professional and capable to their customer base.

Customer Service Tips for Startups

When it comes to good customer service solutions for startups, hiring talented staff is only the beginning.  You must supply them with the proper tools and training from the beginning so they can do their jobs successfully and your company can flourish in the long term.  To empower your staff, here are some customer service tips for startups:

1)  Implement the right software to manage customer interactions

As your startup’s customer base grows, you will need more than just an e-mail account and phone number to handle customer inquiries.  Implement a scalable help desk software solution that will you to create an account for every customer, and keep a history of customer interactions that anyone on your team can have access to.  Some of the most popular customer support software solutions for startups are Zendesk and Freshdesk.  You may consider implementing a ticketing system or live chat for customer support.  If you are using multiple customer support channels, newer software solutions such as Gladly centralizes customer interactions into one conversation, no matter what medium they took place on (call center, live chat, e-mail, etc.).

2)  Encourage customer service agents to go deep

One of the most important customer service tips for successful startups is to make customers feel they are really being heard.  Encourage customer service agents to go to whatever lengths they need to get to the bottom of a customer service issue and pursue a solution.  This includes shifting customer support channels if need be (like switching from e-mail or live chat to phone) and asking open ended questions such as “Can you describe the issue you are experiencing?” and “What can we do to resolve this issue for you?”.  Among the customer service solutions for startups to give clientele are resources such as webinars and blog articles that contain related information to the issue they are dealing with.  See to it your staff has access to these resources. This will give more authenticity to the answers you are offering customers.

3)  Encourage customer service agents to be transparent

One of the customer service tips for startups that will set you apart from your competitors is encouraging a culture of honesty.  Be as transparent as possible with your customers, answering questions as openly and with as much detail as possible.  This will go a long way in building trust with your customer base.  Also, a big part of being honest is knowing when to say no.  Make sure your staff isn’t afraid to be clear with customers when the company can’t meet their specific needs.

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Author: Jessica Cody

Jessica Cody, a native of Fairfield County, Connecticut, has a background in online marketing and public relations. Currently, she works at VHMNetwork LLC in the role of Marketing Analyst. She is a graduate of the University of Connecticut, where she studied Journalism and Political Science. She is also an avid runner with a passion for the outdoors.

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