Top tips for great email and online customer service

Telephone calls

Attach the same importance to electronic enquiries for information on products and services as face-to-face or telephone requests.

The use of email and the internet has changed the face of customer service, making it easier and cheaper to communicate than ever before.

If you offer customer service via your website, use the tips below to ensure you maintain good customer relationships and communication.

1. Always have a contact page

  • Include a contact page for customers to register requests and complaints about your services or products.
  • Use this contact page to capture information such as their name, email address and telephone number.

2. Respond to all enquiries.

  • Attach the same importance to website enquiries as face-to-face or telephone requests.
  • Check your inbox several times a day. Reply that you are following up their enquiry if you can’t answer their query immediately.

3. Give a list of frequently asked questions.

  • Save time by setting up a ‘frequently asked questions’ section on your website, so that customers can find information more quickly.
  • Link to this page at the point where it’s relevant.

4. Include important company information on all correspondence.

  • On emails, provide direct telephone numbers, special offers, email and website addresses.

5. Always reply to complaints.

  • Reply immediately to customer complaints. A dissatisfied customer will tell on average 10 people about their experience of poor customer service.
  • Always offer an apology and explanation, and assure that the problem is being dealt with.
  • Follow-up after dealing with the complaint to ensure the customer is satisfied with the outcome.

6. Send confirmation of online orders

  • If you use the internet to sell products, send an email containing order confirmations as soon as orders are received to alleviate concerns about the electronic transfer of important information, e.g. credit and debit card information.
  • Many larger organisations like Amazon, have also developed order-tracking facilities that provide customers with the exact location of their products on the order cycle.

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