For any company, it is necessary to use the possible means to keep the customers satisfied- regardless of its industry. Nowadays, competition in any sector- retail, healthcare, insurance or FMCG is steep and customers have abundant options to pick from. The customers are also better informed than what they were even a decade back-thanks to web proliferation and digital technology evolution. Every nuance of customer service operation has to be top notch- if you want your venture to stay ahead of competitors. From using the suitable customer service software to keeping the skilled and veteran support agents in the team- you have to adopt necessary measures in this regard. In fact, the greetings used by the support agents also play pivotal role in making the customers happy.
Nuances of using proper greetings in customer support operations
Using the right greetings when addressing customers is important for any business. However, there is no single solution that fits the needs of all businesses, too. Depending on factors like region, time, type of service, company image, customer type, inquiry or grievance type- these greetings can vary.
Listed below are the nuances a support agent has to analyze before using any customer service greetings:
- Time- The customers seeking assistance from the support desk of the company may not always be in the same time zone. In many instances, such customer may be in a different country which has a different time zone. So, the support agents have to be mindful of the time in the country of the customer on call or chat. Greeting customers with ‘Good evening” when it is morning in the country is awkward and it is not apt at the start of the conversation/interaction.
- Type of customers- The support agents need to figure out when a new customer calls and when a loyal customer enquires about anything. They can adjust their tone and address accordingly. This is easier to understand when the help desk software is linked with the CRM database of the company. In that case, they get an understanding of the nature and liking of the customer.
- Nature of enquiry/grievance- Sometimes, the customers may specify nature or summary of their grievances before starting live chat sessions. This is something the agents have to be mindful about. A customer who is irate about a long pending issue would like to get to the point fast. For less serious issues, the greeting can be a little longer.
- Speaking in simple language- It is important that the agents use plain and easy to comprehend languages when greeting the customers- over chat and phone. This helps keep interaction fluid. Besides, some customers may not be good at English and simple language keeps things manageable for them.
- The balance of warmth and professionalism- The support agents need to use the right blend of warmth and professionalism when greeting the customers on call or chat session. The tone should not be either too cold, mechanical or too excited. A robotic and mechanical turn can make most customers feel bad while very informal greeting can also turn off a section of customers.
Examples of some widely used customer service greetings
Listed below are some of the greetings that are used widely in customer service- both in the phone and live chat:
- “Good afternoon/morning. Its great to hear from you”- This greeting is useful to attend customer who is new and have no record stored in the CRM database. This sets a positive tone at the beginning.
- “Hi-have you been here earlier”- This approach in customer service is also going up with the times.
- “Welcome to (company name). This is (agent name). How may I help you?’’- This is possibly the most widely used greeting in customer voice sector. It is widely used in the call center setups. It is deemed a professional approach and usually works well.
- “Hope you are having a good/great day/morning/afternoon”- Using the time of the day in greeting is an approach that is used by some companies to greet their customers when the later call. However, this method may sometimes fetch negative answers, so use it with caution!
- “Welcome back! Hope you have been well” –This is an approach that is used a lot by the companies to greet returning or regular customers.
- “(Company name). How may I assist you?- This is a somewhat curt and precise way to attend to a customer. However, in some scenarios, this approach actually suits well. Companies that offer emergency services and when time-saving is a priority-this can be ideal.
- Hi! (customer name)It’s wonderful to have you back! Please let me know what you need assistance with?- This is a nice way of greeting a returning/loyal customer. It adds a bit of warmth to the interaction.
- Hi! Welcome to (company name). This is (agent name). -May I know who am I speaking with? – This is a bit informal and works the best in casual business environments. However, this goes down well with a section of customers -, especially young ones.
- Hello! You are talking/chatting with (agent name) of (company name) support team. How can I be of help to you? –This is a warm way to begin the interaction and includes a personal element.
- Create customized greetings- The customized greetings also work well in many instances. There is no pre-set formula to make such greetings. However, the agents can use things like the location of the customers, his/her previous orders or feedbacks to start such conversations.
More ways to greet the customers (Industry specific)
There are many more ways to greet the customers on call/chat and companies belonging to specific sectors can resort to these methods. However, some such greetings may work better in some instances and not in others. Examples of industry specific customer greetings include:
- For a telecom service provider- “Hi! You have reached the customer support of (telecom company name)- the network that offers you fastest data speed and exceptional clarity. This is (agent name). How can I help you today?” This is how the agents can promote the brand while greeting the customers professionally.
- For a pet accessory and food brand- “ Hi! Thanks for contacting ( brand name)- the name synonymous with taking care of your pets. This is (agent name). Pls tell me what I can do for you”. This is a way of working on emotions pet owners have for their pets.
- For an aviation company- “Hello! You are talking with (agent name) for (airlines name)- the company that offers you the best flying experience. Pls tell me your requirements.
- For a healthcare service provider- Hi! (Healthcare agency name) helpline. I’m (agent name). What I may asset you with? People call healthcare agencies with urgent medical needs and so the greeting is best kept short and to the point.
Where it all leads to?
So, there is no fixed way to greet the customers properly. A lot of factors and variables have to be analyzed before using any greetings- whether it is on phone or chat. The customer service skill of the agents in coming up with customized and situation specific greeting can also work very well.