How To Provide Good Customer Service in Six Easy Steps

13/03/2018

Good customer service needs to be a benchmark for your brand as it is a huge part of the reason people will return and use you again and again. Customers like to have a pleasant experience and if you invest the time in ensuring your business provides it, you’ll have a much better chance at ensuring they return and use you again in the future.

1. Make it easy

Whether its setting up an instant online chat option, providing a phone number or responsive email address, make sure your customers can contact you to let you know they have a beef with something. No matter how smooth your logistics are planned, unforeseen problems can occur and you need to be able to fix these promptly and pleasantly. People are forgiving, particularly when presented with a simple solution.

2. Know Your Service

There is very little more frustrating than trying to describe a product or service to someone who hasn’t got a clue what you’re talking about. Make sure you know your business and what it provides inside out so you can knowledgeably handle any call or complaint that comes in. It sounds simple, but you’d be surprised how many companies neglect this detail and come across as incompetent when it comes to their own services.

Related reading: 3 tips for using technology for better customer service

3. Friendliness Matters

The first thing a customer will want is to get their point across, so you need to be sure you’re listening. Don’t rush them to get to the point, but take the time to let them finish. They’ll be much more reasonable about your suggested solution if they feel they have been heard to begin with.

Maintaining a non-confrontational, patient approach is one of your most valuable customer service tools. People want someone to blame when something goes wrong and sometimes this will be you. If you handle it with gentle language, respect, and a friendly demeanour, it can turn them around. It’s incredibly hard to continue yelling at someone who is being placid and understanding about your problem. They might even brighten up and end up thanking you at the end of it. They’ll remember that the next time around, and hopefully, will use you again knowing that if something goes wrong, they’ll have a pleasant experience making it right.

4. Provide A Consistent Experience 

Nothing irks a client more than inconsistencies in how their account is managed, whether this is in the sale of goods or supply of services. According to a McKinsey article, sustaining the long-term commitment of a client boils down to maintaining consistency in three different categories: customer-journey consistency, emotional consistency and communication consistency.

One way to ensure consistency when managing client accounts is to have clear workflows and processes, especially in the areas of payments and finances. Ensure you have in place the key legal documents that outline your payment practices, including the following:

  • Sale of Goods Agreement or Supply of Services Agreement: These documents outline the foundations of how you do business with a supplier or client.
  • Purchase Order: This is a document between a supplier and buyer that confirms a purchase and details the items the buyer agrees to purchase at a certain price, the delivery date, and terms of payment for the buyer.
  • Invoice: This is a document that you send to a customer requiring payment for goods or services, that serves as a bill and a proof of the transaction.
  • Late Payment Letters: These documents are useful and affordable way of following up on overdue invoices in a professional manner.
  • Letter Accepting Payments in Instalments: This document helps to formalise the agreement for payment and sets out clear rules to prevent potential legal disputes from arising.

Businesses often do not pay enough attention to these critical documents as they regard payment transactions as mere formalities that are not central to the customer experience. However, there may be detrimental consequences if such processes are inconsistent and the documents not well-drafted. You (and your sales force) should have the same answer to answer these questions:

  • What payment options do your company accept?
  • Is there any option to make payments in instalments?
  • Are there discounts for bulk purchases?

These are questions that may be on the mind of your customers. Having standardised documents and systems in place ensures that both you and your clients know what to expect.

5. Get Feedback

People often like to voice their opinions and if you ask them how you did at handling their problem, they may give you some hints at how you could improve the next time and will also feel like you really care what they think. This is a very positive way to end a conversation, whether it’s over the phone, in person, or on email, and will leave your customer on a pleasant note that may lead to beneficial word of mouth to one of their friends, who could become your next customer.

6. Train Your Staff

Make sure every member of your staff knows your policy on customer service and employs the above techniques. Have them listen to you deal with calls or copy them in on emails so they can continue to learn how to handle different situations. It can make all the difference in the success of your entire business if you can entice repeat customers based on your handling of problems when they arise.

Start managing your legal needs with Zegal today

3 tips for using technology for better customer service

20/12/2017

The advent of technology has transformed the face of business everywhere, in any area conceivable. One of the key areas in which technology has been harnessed to strengthen a company is the area of customer service. In order for your business to continue to grow in the midst of cutthroat competition, it is imperative that it maintains its competitive edge. One of the ways in which this can be done is to harness technology for better customer service.

1. Engage new customers

The first way that you can harness technology for better customer service comes in when you attempt to engage with new customers. You can leverage on current technology to help you in these efforts. The main idea behind engaging technology for this purpose is to draw new and curious customers in by being able to provide answers to their questions about your product quickly and efficiently.

One of the most powerful ways to harness technology to build these relationships is to integrate third party messaging apps into the process. These could include current popular platforms such as Messenger, WhatsApp, or WeChat (a popular messaging app in China). Following a customer’s initial attempt to start a conversation with customer service on a firm’s website, the conversation moves to a third party messaging app. This in turn allows for a continuous thread of conversation to flow between the potential customer and customer service personnel, or even a bot programmed to take on this function. This subsequently enables a more personalised and seamless way for companies to engage with potential customers. This is something that has worked well for 1-800-Flowers.com, a conversational pioneer on Messenger and Amazon’s Alexa. The company relies on external experts for customer experience design and bot technology, to assist them in building a bot-based commerce system. At the same time, it lets its trained staff interpret service questions from a customer for the bot, to allow for a response that feels more ‘human’. The result is a top of the notch customer service experience, for many happy customers who have testified to that effect.

2. Maintain your current customer base

Excellent customer service tends to be the key to retaining customers and boosting profits. Statistics from Business Insider show that 86 percent of consumers have stopped doing business with a company because of a negative customer service experience. In a fashion similar to the above, technology can similarly be employed to help you provide better customer service, and in turn maintain your current customer base. Technology once again is able to help your business’s customer service personnel communicate more efficiently with your current customers. This enables them to better aid your customers in solving any technical issues that may arise with the product, over platforms such as Skype and Facebook Message.

Related reading: 5 Tips For Improving Customer Retention And Loyalty

Furthermore, technology has also enabled companies to be better able to monitor various channels to gauge the customer satisfaction levels, and to identify the most problematic aspects of their products. This in turn allows personnel to better understand the problems the customer faces, and in turn makes them able to provide a targeted response to the issue that is both personalized and efficient.

3. Automate and utilise resources efficiently

Another question that you can ask with regards to how to harness technology is this – what can I automate to make my entire workflow more efficient? This impacts efficiency in that you can now divert your attention and resources towards building a better customer service experience for your customers. After all, something that technology definitely cannot replace is the sincerity that personally interacting with customers can convey.

The key to this, as mentioned, is automating your workflow wherever you can. For instance, you could use tools such as Hootsuite to help populate your social media platforms with pre-written content. You could also use such automation to help at certain stages of customer service, for example, using a tool to help send auto-reply notifications to customers that their request for help has been received, and that you will be responding to them shortly.

As you look towards these technological solutions, keep in mind that there too are technological solutions for your legal needs. One of the key things a customer looks out for when engaging a service is consistency of experience. These include the areas of payments and finances. Ensure you have in place the key legal documents that outline your payment practices, such as Invoices and Sale of Goods Agreements.

All in all, there are countless ways that you can harness technology to connect with your customers better. The rise of technology has no doubt posed many exciting and useful tools to help us build our businesses, and it is important for businesses to continue upgrading themselves with such tools.

Start managing your legal needs with Zegal today

Are there any tech solutions you use to improve the customer service experience?

Share with us in the comments below!

The Dragons descend on RISE

20/07/2017

RISE is a startup and entrepreneurship festival that takes place every year at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre. Thousands of innovators, investors, and companies come together to share ideas, connect, and network in one of the biggest hubs in the world. Here, we recap what the Dragons got up to when they landed at RISE!

Day 1

Day 1 was all about sealing the deal on the professional relationships you had been forming over the past few months or years. The buzz was incessant as attendees walked around, talking to other entrepreneurs and learning about their businesses. As everyone was trying to find their bearings in the hustling, bustling city of Hong Kong, lively chats were taking place on every stage in the event. These stages were set up at each corner of the convention hall with the booths set up in every other square inch available.

On the first day, there were numerous talks regarding fintech and artificial intelligence. As Jing Ulrich, of JP Morgan Chase, and Wayne Xu, of ZhongAn (an InsurTech firm) stated, FinTech is taking over the operations of even traditional banks. They are transforming their technological capabilities in order to stay competitive with other, newer financial technology companies. Some of the talks included “Building for Asia’s ‘new economy’” and “Living on the fintech Indian frontier.”

Some exciting startups aside from Zegal were also present, and us Dragons had the chance to talk to their representatives at the booth! Wantedly, for example, is a recruiting platform that helps both employees and recruiters understand companies and candidates. They allow candidates to find environments in which they will feel fulfilled, comfortable, and motivated. Many of our Dragons signed up for the Women in Tech cohort where they were able to network with many other women who were in startups or entrepreneurs themselves.

Blueprint, a co-working and event space, was conveniently located in the middle of the hall, was one of the main hubs throughout the conference. True to their mission, Blue Print helped to build a small community for RISE attendees, providing a great meeting place to sit and network with other companies.

Day 2

Day 2 was a big day for us, as we had our booth set up in the START section. The day, in a nutshell, was nonstop activity. Many people came up to our booth and there were many points in the day when every red-clad Dragon was talking to an attendee. It is safe to say a large percentage of RISE left the conference with some sort of knowledge of Legal Tech. We got many questions, from “What is Legal Tech?” to “How can I integrate this into my business?” all the way to exclamations like “Sign me up!” Some attendees from other countries were eager to see us eventually expand into other countries, and this gave us great excitement to know that we are being noticed from places outside our jurisdictions.

register.zegal.com

From about lunchtime until the close, Zegal was undoubtedly one of the busiest booths in the START section. We were multitasking in talking to potential clients and signing up those who were interested in a Free Trial. Indeed, many companies were interested in how we could help them streamline their legal work in their business. Many attendees were running into the high legal fees that SMEs usually experience, and we were able to offer a quick, affordable, and easy solution. All in all, as our Sales Executive Mehdi said, “everyone was looking to improve their business” by “looking for new solutions.”

One of the highlights of our day, however, was when our Chairman, Antoine Blondeau, the Co-Founder and Co-Chairman of Sentinent Technologies, spoke about the “Three Cases of Revolutionary AI.” His company was the “highest funded Artificial Intelligence company” according to Forbes. He spoke on the three instances where AI has been truly groundbreaking. As a Legal Tech company, we are honoured to have such a technological visionary as the Chairman of our board.

Other than our stand, there were numerous talks and pitches that took place throughout Day 2. Our booth was very close to the PITCH stage, so Dragons would venture over there when they had a spare minute. One of our interns heard a few pitches but she said a couple stood out: Avigo and Unilodgers. Avigo is an app that makes corporate wellness easy and accessible. It was founded to “revolutionise the health and wellness space.” The founder, Melvin Chen, was enthusiastic about his app and believed that he could change the way people view fitness classes. The second app that was notable was Unilodgers. This application helps students find affordable housing near their University campuses. It was interesting seeing all of the ideas that radiated from that stage; their presentations was definitely a motivation for all.

Day 3

Day 3 was all about solidifying the relationships formed over the past couple of hectic but exciting days. At this point, you could walk around and see people you had seen during the day or during one of the night events, and it was hard not to run into someone who was vaguely familiar. It was helpful to follow up with the connections made during the conference. Much of our team spent the day doing this. They walked around in bright red shirts, asking people questions, collecting business cards, and finding out more about SMEs that sounded interesting or helpful.

Other talks that received high praise from our team was “BigBasket=Big eCommerce ambition.” In this talk, Vipul Parekh spoke on why he decided to go into such a low-margin industry. He stated that he believes that the industry is “highly unorganized” and he believed he could change that with the way BigBasket retains its customers and integrates science and technology into its operations.

At the end of the day, many of our Dragons were approached by attendees they had met before. These people said that they had been recommending Zegal throughout the conference and that they were excited to start using our software. The best part about these connections was that they grew the Zegal network. The more money entrepreneurs are able to save, the more they are able to grow, and the more successful they are!

After the last day’s activities and festivities, our Co-Founder and Head of Partnerships Ryanne Lai spoke at the Technology x Culture x Entertainment meetup. She discussed how technology was changing the legal culture. It informed attendees on how the legal field is integrating technology for the better.

We hope that those who attended RISE found it fun, enjoyable, inspirational, and educational. For those who were not able to make it, remember to save the date for the 2018 conference, as they are already on sale! If you are interested in learning more about the companies that presented or watching the conference videos, check them out!

Claim your free trial. Start drafting legal documents with Zegal today.

The Six Stages

20/06/2017

Starting a new business is an exciting prospect. Working for yourself, turning your ideas into reality, and making your own money has motivated many to take the entrepreneurial route and set out on their own. In the excitement of launching a business, obvious legal issues can often be overlooked that later derail an otherwise well-thought-out business plan.

Putting in place basic legal documents protects the interests of your business, as they help to set out clear rights and responsibilities. Written legal agreements are a great way to create clear expectations and therefore help to avoid conflicts. For an entrepreneur or business owner, tackling your legal needs can seem daunting, but it doesn’t need to be.

Not sure where to start? Just read on. We’ll explain the six different stages every startup goes through. Learn the secret of how to get started quickly.

Form a Business

When starting a new business, you will need to decide the type of business structure that will be used to operate your business and, if relevant, where you would like to incorporate your company. Some countries are easier than others. Different countries also offer different tax schemes. Be smart in deciding how and where to incorporate!

Own Your Intellectual Property

Make sure you own your trade mark and you maintain and protect it after registration. A trade mark will be one of your most valuable commercial assets if you manage it well.

Fund Your Business

Your business will not be able to grow without funding. Learn what methods are available, what documents you need, and what is the best way for your business to start raising capital at an early stage

Hire a Team

When growing your business, you will need to hire a team. Employment law is complex, so make sure you are in line with legal regulations.

Go Online

Going online can be a lucrative way to expand your business and grow revenue. Think about how to protect customer data, outline terms of use, and include payment terms. Neglecting these basics can put your business at risk.

Sell Goods and Services

There is a wide range of contracts that need to be used regularly in the course of doing business, including before you enter into a commercial relationship, when you sell goods or services, or when you expand or decide to terminate a collaboration.

Start managing your legal needs with Zegal today.

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