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Improve your customer response times and overall effectiveness in handling support requests
While FAQs and knowledge bases are extremely critical for your customer support agents to save time, they still are likely to be frequently faced with common questions. And for all such situations, canned responses come in handy. Canned responses refer to predefined responses to common queries, which can be accessed and sent by team members as part of their conversations, thus optimizing response time and boosting productivity.
To effectively use canned responses as part of your helpdesk or live chat tool, your customer support agents can create a predefined set of response templates and assign them to short codes. Then every time your agent types in the shortcode, the predefined response is sent to your customer.
For example, if you are an ecommerce business, your support agent can create a canned response for situations related to payment issues. They can define a short code called “/paymentbug” with the response “We apologize for the inconvenience caused. Your amount will be refunded within 3 business days.” And everytime there is a payment, you just need to type “/paymentbug” and the response defined for the short code is sent to the customer.
More importantly, canned responses need not be restricted to desktop usage. With everyone owning smartphones, customer support agents can access support queries and send out canned responses on the go.
/hi – Hello there, how can I help you today?
/hold – Apologies, I need to check this with my team. Can I request you to hold on for a few minutes please?
/transfer – <customer name>, I am about to loop in <colleague’s name>, who is part of <department> team to help you better with this. Does that sound good to you?
/holdchat – Is it ok if I place your chat on hold for a moment?
/sorry – Apologies for the trouble caused. I totally understand your concern. Let me try to resolve it right away.
/bye – Thanks for getting in touch, it was great chatting with you, <customer_name>. Please feel free to connect again for any further queries. Have a wonderful day!
/discount – We are offering a <% discount> on <product plan>. Would that be of interest to you?
/cancel – Sorry to hear that our product/service didn’t meet your expectation. Let me cancel your subscription. However, can I know the reason so that we can improve our services going forward?
The whole idea of using canned responses is to improve customer response time and improve the customer experience. So a good benchmark to start with is to make sure that your canned responses don’t sound canned.
Do not write a canned response that says "Our team is working diligently to resolve your issue”. Though it sounds right, it is not conversational. It’s best to write the way an actual conversation would be.
In situations where there needs to be a follow up, make sure your canned responses state the next steps clearly with a date and time.
You need to be sensitive to your customer, and be cautious in using your canned responses. For instance, if you face a unique situation, it makes sense to send a personalized response.
Setting up canned responses is just the beginning. You need to periodically review how customers respond to canned responses. And in cases, where it isn’t drawing the ideal response from the customer, you need to improve it.
Next topic - ROI on customer relationships
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