Guide

Manage your customer service

Understand your customers better

Providing a high level of customer service means finding out what your customers want. Once you have found your most valuable customers, you can target your highest levels of customer service towards them. Another approach is treating all consumers to the highest standard. This works well in the consumer market.

Collect information about your customers

Information about your customers and what they want is available from many sources, including:

  • their order history
  • records of their contacts with your business - phone calls, meetings and so on
  • direct feedback - if you ask them, customers will usually tell you what they want
  • changes in individual customers' order patterns
  • changes in the overall success of specific products or services
  • feedback about your existing range - what it does and doesn't do
  • enquiries about possible new products or services
  • feedback from your customers about things they buy from other businesses
  • changes in the goods and services your competitors are selling
  • feedback and referrals from other, non-competitive suppliers

It is important that you understand your customers' needs in order to retain and grow your customer base.

Manage your customer information

It's important that you draw up a plan about how customer information is to be gathered and used. Establish a customer-care policy. Assign a senior manager as the policy's champion but make sure that all your staff are involved. Often less senior staff have more direct contact with customers.

You can manage your customer database using a database or customer relationship management software.

If you collect and use your customers’ personal information, you must comply with the General Data Protection Act (GDPR).