If you run an online business, you know that customer service can take up a lot of your time. If it takes too much of your time, it will infringe on your ability to market, build new businesses, or develop new products or services. It is important, after all, to grow your business with new ideas rather than spend all your time assisting your existing business.
Since you cannot ignore customer service, you have two options. One, you can hire employees to deal with customer’s questions and comments, or you can initiate programs that will help reduce online customer service time.
FAQ, or frequently asked questions, is a great page to include in any online business website. This page should be prominently displayed in your main navigation so that troubled customers can find it easily.
On your FAQ page, you should include all of the possible questions you think customers might ask you. If there are a lot, you should break them up into categories. For example, an ecommerce site might have the FAQ categories payment, shipping, product information, and guarantees. A website hosting business may have the following categories: control panel use, hosting plan specifics, payments, etc.
Terms in Plain English
Many troubles with customer service stem from the fact that the TOS, terms of service, are difficult for the average person to understand. Many are written in ‘legalese,’ and do not help customer service at all.
You can save online service time by writing your terms in plain English. This does not mean that you should leave out any of the legal requirements, of course.
If you run a service business where questions are often about how to do specific things, your online business might benefit from a support forum. This would be a place for clients or customers to come together and ask and answer questions for each other.
Of course, with a support forum, you should make sure that no specific questions about payment or shipping are asked. This type of online customer service would be especially helpful in a business dealing with website hosting and development.
Reducing the online customer service time will allow you to facilitate updates for your business better. While it is impossible to get everyone to help himself or herself when it comes to customer complaints and questions, you can try. Questions, terms of service, and a customer support forum can go a long way in reducing the time you spend on customer service online.