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Ecommerce is a fierce industry, with thousands of competitors out there waiting to steal your sales. One of the ways you can increase customer loyalty and keep those valuable sales coming is to up your game when it comes to customer service.

Shoppers like to feel valued, respected and – most of all – listened to. Needless to say, speed is one of the most important factors. That’s why social media is one of the best ways to handle your customer service, dealing with complaints quickly, offering support and assisting potential customers with their concerns.

We understand that, for some, navigating social media can be tricky. Especially when it comes to managing multiple platforms. That’s we’ve put together a handy guide, explaining how you can level-up your customer service using social media…

The quicker the better

In today’s fast-paced world, people expect results quickly – and online customer service is no exception. In fact, almost half of those complaining to brands on social media expect a response in less than 60 minutes. At the very least, most customers expect a response within the same day.

Slow replies can push potential customers away, leading them to:

  • Find a similar product elsewhere
  • Complain to family and friends
  • Not return to the site
  • Voice their complaint publicly via social media

Not convinced? According to New Voice Media, businesses are losing a whopping £10.8 billion a year through poor customer service. Don’t join the list of companies missing out on sales every day through slow response times.

Right place, right time

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest – the list goes on. With so many social media platforms out there, it can be tricky to stand out across all of them, all of the time. So, rather than relying on guess work or spreading yourself too thin and not being able to provide the level of social care necessary, it’s useful to figure out where most of your social media activity is coming from.

Search for mentions of your brand on all popular social media sites and, if there are plenty of conversations occurring, be sure to join in. If you find your business isn’t cropping up as often as you’d like on social media, look for ways to include yourself in relevant conversations.

If you find a lot of chatter about baby clothes, for instance, and this is your industry, you’d be missing an opportunity if you don’t join in with conversations and make yourself known.

Make the most of technology

While there is no true replacement for human interaction, automated responses can go a long way when it comes to customer service on social media. The 2017 MIT Technology Review reports that over 90% of brands ‘with world-leading brand recognition and high levels of customer satisfaction’ used artificial intelligence to support their customer service.

More and more businesses are using bots to deal with simple customer queries and answer frequently asked, basic questions. This frees up time for human specialists and customer service teams to focus on more complex issues. Areas that require more empathy, creativity and connection will typically benefit more from human interaction, whereas automated bots are ideal for more functional requests.

Keeping things private

Responding to public complaints on social media is crucial to reassure not only the complainant, but all of your other followers on the platform. Depending on the nature of the complaint or the necessary steps to resolve it, you need to be aware of when it’s appropriate to take care of an issue privately.

If the issue requires a number of back-and-forth replies or sensitive personal information is needed, agents should usually move the conversation to a more private setting.

Respond to complaints with an apology, offer your assistance and ask the customer to message you privately with an order number, email address or further information. This way, you can successfully display positive customer service, while keeping personal information private and minimising the impact on your brand.

Manners cost nothing

Whether you’re on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn, there are a few things to bear in mind to avoid causing more harm than good. Of course, it goes without saying that you shouldn’t neglect your customers in any situation. So, if you choose to provide customer service over social media – which we suggest you do! – you need to respond to every direct question as an absolute minimum.

We understand that negative comments can disrupt your social media pages, and the urge to delete them can be tempting. But deleting or hiding negative comments may only cause further damage, annoying the customer and provoking more comments. Other customers will inevitably start to notice that something isn’t right.

Similarly, it’s important not to be defensive. We get it, you’ve worked hard to get your business to where it is and if a customer is rude, angry or dismissive of your service, remaining calm is easier said than done. Remember, however irritated or angry the customer is, they’ve still reached out to you for assistance, so they deserve the same level of customer care as anybody else.

We can help

The best customer service comes when you put time, effort and the right expertise into managing social media, providing consistent and regular support across different platforms. If you’re unsure where to start or feel like you can’t dedicate enough time to the cause, Bing Digital are here to help. Our social media management services allow you to reap the rewards of an excellent social media presence without any hassle.

Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram – whichever platforms you opt to use, we have the knowledge and experience to transform your business through social media. For more information about our services, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our friendly team of experts today.

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