Customer service is an essential part of your company. As a new customer service manager, or a manager that is looking to ensure that they’re still following best practices when it comes to taking care of customers and their customer service teams, these tried and true strategies are a great place to start.

Customer Experience IdeaTo make sure that your customers continue to using your services, and guarantee that they return to buy your products, you must learn to connect your company to the people that support you the most.

But retaining your satisfied customers is not all that’s important to customer service. You need to consider the people who weren’t nearly as happy with your products or service.

By practicing good customer service, you’ll be able to turn your least satisfied customer into an endorser singing your praises.

Follow-through will make a one-time buyer into your most reliable customer. This is why customer service is so important—the investment that you pour into customer service and maintaining the loyalty of your customers is money that you don’t waste in attracting people who may or may not be long-term customers.

How do you make your customers stay with you for the long haul? Through the magic of customer service. Let’s take a look:

1. Understand your customers

An underlying knowledge of your customers’ preferences and habits is essential to keeping them happy. If you don’t know how they behave with regards to the things that they like, how will you be able to provide them with products and experiences that they’ll enjoy?

Try to see your business through the eyes of your customer. Make continual runs through the user experience of your website or order products from your own catalogue. Did they satisfy you? Because if you aren’t satisfied with your own product, chances are that your customer isn’t either.

2. Always seek to improve.

Engaging in customer service is a process that builds upon itself. The problems that you glean from the unique insight of your customer will only serve as opportunities for you to address, leading to growth as a company.

In turn, these new policies will be experienced by your customers, which will result in another feedback process. By continuing to iterate upon your existing products, services, and policies, you will make believers out of your former doubters, and make your loyal customers even more loyal.

3. Continually listen.

Just opening your ears to your customers will be effective. You’ll be able to cultivate a fantastic relationship with your clients—they’ll have the opportunity to let you know their various concerns, and you’ll be able to take advantage of this dialogue to improve your future customer interactions.

Look at it this way—every item of positive feedback that your customers give you is an assurance that you are doing well, and every negative item is a chance to do better next time.

4. Practice engagement.

Customer service isn’t a one-way street. It is a conversation between you and the backbone of your company—the people who purchase your products and services, keeping your company profitable.

Get your customers as involved in your processes as much as possible. Enable comments in your site, encourage user reviews for the various items in your catalogue, provide them with exclusive discounts, and prioritize them in your customer service queue. Propagate a sense of community, of belonging, and your customers will feel welcome.

At the end of the day, customer service is all about understanding. Treat your customer with the same empathy that you would a friend or a colleague, and try to solve every problem they may have. Customer service is all about mutually beneficial relations, so always seek a compromise that will enable you to make the best of every situation for all parties involved.