Enhancing Customer Service

Make your website smartphone-friendly

More than 40 per cent of people in the UK have made purchases over smartphones, according to the IAB Consumer M-Commerce Study. As more and more potential customers use mobile phones, you should ensure that your website works as well on a small screen as it does on a traditional PC or laptop. Kate Horstead finds out how to make your website smartphone-friendly. To read the full article and recommendations from Ben Dyer e-commerce expert at Sellerdeck, visit ICAEW.

The ABC for Handling a Customer Crisis

No matter how hard you try, sometimes there is a customer crisis. When you're in management, the problem is that it may only come to light when it is reaching the point of nuclear meltdown. Toyota is the latest in a long line of companies to illustrate this point.

When there is a customer crisis, at best, upset customers will take their business elsewhere, tell their friends, blog about it and generally damage your reputation. At worst they will sue you and cost serious money. The litigation may even be enough to risk the future of the company, or catch the attention of the media with similarly catastrophic results.

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If the customer is King, service is Queen: How to improve engagement

Chris Barling believes that rather than focusing on adding extra features and fashionable gizmos to your site, you need to up the quality of your customer interaction. The three key messages are:

  • Educate staff to respect customers and be helpful (and set an example from the top)
  • Listen to customers: use feedback systems, complaints, mystery shopper results, and use the comments to enhance your business
  • Ensure your service is excellent and consistent in all parts of the business and all channels.

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Complaints are like gold dust

Complaints are great. Although there is a tendency to do the same with complaints as with a medieval runner bringing bad news from the battlefield - blame the messenger - this temptation must be avoided at all costs. Complaints are the best and most unvarnished source of customer feedback. That's when they are read in the raw, uncorrupted by staff editing, "summarisation" or by any other subtle bias from your customer surveys.

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On The Internet Everyone Hears You Scream

One of my early experiences of the internet came from my maths tutor at college. It was 1994 and he described the net as the Wild West, unpoliceable, unpredictable and a free for all. While only some of that is still true today, there is certainly one thing that's become clear, the internet has a very long memory.

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