Email has become one of the main modes of communication for businesses to consumers. There are more than 129 billion business emails sent per day, and a significant amount are promotional messages, customer service updates, and automated content. People continue to rely on email for their purchase receipts and for written confirmations from the companies they buy from. This means your customer service email strategy is essential to win over new customers and retain loyal ones.
There are a few top practices you can follow to offer good email customer service. Consider these tips for creating the best customer service emails in your industry and region.
1. Use Various Email Templates
You can simplify your email efforts by creating a variety of templates to use in different situations. For example, a company would likely have:
- A thank you reply email (which is often automated).
- An escalation email template for when a problem needs to get pushed to a higher level within management.
- A sample email reply to a customer inquiry to help new customer service reps answer questions.
And many more. Companies can use these templates to maintain a unified brand voice across all customer service teams. They ensure the content, tone, and branding are all the same regardless of the nature of the email. These templates also help customer teams respond faster because they can start with a preset email instead of writing a message from scratch.
2. Personalize Your Emails
Personalization is a great way to grab your customers' attention and make a positive impression with your email content. This can be as simple as leading with their name in the subject or recommending products they might enjoy based on past buying behavior.
Personalized emails can also help with email customer service. You can form an emotional connection with customers and show that you genuinely care about them.
If your customer service team has to deal with angry responses or faulty orders, this personalization can calm frustrated customers and make the overall exchange better. Your staff will feel less stressed, and your customers will be more likely to return to your brand.
3. Simplify the Email
The average office worker receives 121 emails per day, and many people have both personal and professional email accounts. This means your message is likely to get lost or ignored if it doesn't provide immediate value to your customers.
Simplify your content, so the message is instantly clear. Use an informative subject line, not just a tease. Furthermore, if you are sending a support email, get to the point. Let your customers know whether you will be able to help them and what you will need.
Your customers don't have time to review long content, and you don't have the time to write it. Stay concise, and provide clear information.
4. Pay Attention to the Way You Deliver Email Messages
Evaluate the email software you use to make sure you have the best option for your brand. If you run a small business and only respond to a few dozen emails per day, then a basic platform might work for your company. However, if you have multiple customer care staff members, then you might want to look into software that makes it easier to sort, respond, and address the problems.
For example, some email tools will filter issues by subject and even make solution recommendations. This can cut down your average email response time and increase your value to customers.
5. Pay Attention to the Tone
Email tone should be a big part of employee training on how to respond to customer complaints. The tone can either escalate the situation and frustrate customers or assure them they are in good hands, and their issue will get resolved.
It's important to pay attention to your tone because it is so difficult to master. You want to be empathetic and understanding but also authoritative. This creates a personal connection with your brand while instilling confidence in your care team. You also want your team members to remain positive and solution-based, even when there is no way to help the customer.
Regular training and individual customer evaluations can help teams maintain this tone.
6. Check Email Multiple Times to Avoid Grammatical Errors
Check, double-check, and triple-check your content before you send it out. Spelling and grammatical errors are unprofessional and distracting to your customers. They will likely focus more on the error than your actual message. Furthermore, some errors can make the message confusing, causing more work for your customer care team as you field questions and concerns.
If you are developing email templates for customer service emails or drafting a message to send to your email list, ask someone to look over the message and catch any errors. Having this second set of eyes review the content can help catch any errors you might have missed while making you feel more confident when you hit the send button.
7. Include Links When Necessary
Links within emails can help your customers get more information about your products and your brand. They are useful within promotional emails and can also help with general communication, onboarding, and customer service policies.
One of the main questions email marketing teams ask is whether they should use links in customer support emails. Directing customers to a link could seem impersonal and might not get the click-through rate brands desire. Fortunately, there is a basic rule of thumb you can follow when adding links: Answer the question clearly in the body of the email, and then direct customers to a link to learn more. This way, your customers get the answer immediately but can also do their own research within the link.
By having a strong response plan in place, you can respond to customer complaints in a timely manner. You can win unhappy customers over most of the time with clear professionalism and solutions to make the situation right. That, along with good grammar and detailed design, can help you protect and even enhance your brand in the eyes of your customers.