The difference between being an ordinary consultant and an extraordinary consultant lies in that little extra; it’s in the way in which you service your customers. Being professional and getting the job done is expected, but there’s much to say for going the extra mile. It’s the characteristic that can set you apart from the rest of your competitors and make for satisfied customers that will essentially become your very own brand ambassadors.
Here are a few ways you can sharpen your customer service skills to maintain and gain new customers:
It’s all about the personal touch
As a consultant, you are most likely dealing with client relations by yourself on a daily basis. This puts you in position to truly optimise your customer service skills and add a personal touch. Your customers are not dealing with a call centre or a representative from a large corporation – just you – so use this to your advantage. Give each of your clients the presidential treatment. It’s not about what you do but rather how you do it that makes all the difference. This means showing interest and paying attention to their needs and problems. Focus on small gestures like remembering their birthdays, special wishes over the holidays and even just lending a patient ear for casual conversation – this shows that you really care.
Keep the line of communication open at all times
If you are delivering an ongoing service your clients are going to be in contact with you quite often. Whether you have to respond to queries or give updates on the progress of tasks, one of the bestcustomer service skills you can possess is to ensure that you are always one step ahead. Be proactive with your communication. Check in with them regularly, and more importantly, keep them updated. Go to them so that they don’t have to keep chasing you for information.
Improve the efficiency of your quoting and invoicing process
The faster you send out a quote, once you have received a request to render a service or product, the better. The customer is most likely getting more than one quote and the sooner yours is in their inbox the bigger the chances to close the deal. The quality of your quotes and invoices is also paramount to getting new business. You have to ensure that all the necessary information – yours and the client’s – is included and that the document looks professional. Once your quote has been accepted, you need to prepare your invoice with the same care and response time.
Get a helping hand with the power of technology
Automating your quote and invoice creation process allows you to respond immediately at the touch of a button. It also eliminates human error by ensuring that your invoice numbers are not duplicated and that you have all the relevant information on every invoice – a crucial aspect for you to get paid on time and not have your invoice sent back for change. It also ensures you stay within the boundaries of the law.
Our online accounting system can help simplify the creation of quotes and invoices and other financial admin tasks. SMEasy is online so you can quickly send out and convert quotes into invoices on the fly. Do your invoices contain all the necessary information? Try our free invoice assessmentand we’ll give you feedback on how you can improve your invoices to further sharpen yourcustomer service skills.