What do you think is the biggest challenge faced by businesses during a major sale event???
Handling out-of-stock situations? Maybe…
Handling last-mile deliveries? Possible…
Handling the barrage of incoming customer queries? Definitely!
Yes, a vast majority of you will agree with the third, especially if you are a medium or large-sized business.
Because the number of orders placed is going to increase drastically during such a high-volume period. And with that comes a significant surge in the number of order-related and product-related calls (and messages) from customers.
In other words, your customer service team is going to be drained, exhausted, and overwhelmed in just a matter of a few hours once the event starts.
Unless, of course, they are prepared before.
And that’s where this post will help you as we bring you 6 handy tips to arm your customer service team with all the necessary resources and information to handle any major sale event in a more efficient and effective manner.
Critical situations of any magnitude can be handled effectively if there is a process in place. As a store owner, you might already have a great customer service team or even established some simple guidelines to handle customer queries during your normal days. Major sale events are not your regular days.
You need to have a completely different process that revolves around ‘volume’. The customer service process you set should help the team to:
Now, one of the key components of such a process is having a script for every interaction. To create one, revisit your past interactions, identify the most commonly asked questions, and build an interactive script to handle all recurrent queries.
Even if you have a solid customer service team, it might not be enough during the sale event. Because you need all the help in the world to handle the massive influx of customer queries.
Thankfully, you don’t have to spend hundreds of hours or thousands of dollars in hiring and supporting such a huge team. All you have to do is hire a bunch of qualified people on a contractual basis in addition to your regular team.
The key is to hire experts who have the capability to quickly understand your products and easily empathize with customers. Once you find such people, supplement their expertise with a short training on what you sell, to whom you sell, and the kind of issues that can crop up in your business. Also, explain to them clearly the existing customer service guidelines you have, including your brand voice and your mission.
Let’s face it - most customers reaching out to your customer service team during a major sale event are unhappy (in different magnitudes, of course) due to limited information about the product, offers, or the order they just placed. The easiest way to make them even more frustrated is by letting them hop on a tiring and endless journey to contact your customer service team.
To avoid adding fuel to this fire, ensure that you are extremely easy to reach, particularly during the sale period. Open multiple channels and be actively present there. Some of the customer service channels you must have a presence during a major sale event include -
If there is one word that every store owner dreads, it is ‘Returns’. After all, product returns translate to monetary losses and unwanted logistical hassles. However, it’s unavoidable in an eCommerce ecosystem, particularly during a major sale, when people buy in huge volumes.
Did you know - goods worth $100 billion were returned in 2020 during the holiday sale?
Though you cannot avoid it, you can handle it in the following ways -
This is probably the simplest but most ignored customer service activity. You need to have a dedicated page on your website or app capturing all the Frequently Asked Questions about the products and orders. Ensure that you cover every possible question and offer a complete answer so that your customers leave with a solution.
There are 2 advantages to this -
If you already have an FAQ page, review the questions once again and modify the answers with the latest information. Ultimately, the goal of this section is to reduce the number of calls and messages to your customer service team, even if it is by a small margin.
Not every query needs to reach your customer service team. Some of them can be resolved just by looking at the FAQs section. But admit it - some of you might not be comfortable searching through a large collection of questions and answers to find solutions. For such people, the best way to access key information is via live chat support.
This is made possible with the help of intelligent chatbots that can be integrated with your website or mobile app. These chatbots are powered by AI and ML algorithms that “learn” from product details, order details, and the previous customer queries to offer instantaneous, relevant, and tailored responses to most customer queries.
As a store owner, your primary objective of any sale event should be to extend a seamless shopping experience for all your customers. But that’s not possible unless you solve every possible hindrance your customers might encounter during this journey. Follow the tips highlighted in this post to arm your customer service team with the necessary resources who can then bulldoze through these hurdles.
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