Working in the business to business sector poses a different kind of challenge to customer facing business. In fact, the name is so misleading that you may not even believe customer service matters, but it absolutely does. Just because your customers are other businesses doesn’t mean they don’t expect a high level of customer care and attention, delivered to a good standard. Here we’re looking at how you can tailor your customer service skills to business customers.
How B2B Customer Service is Different
B2B businesses tend to have less competition than B2C customers. This means you can treat each customer like a business partner and build a closer relationship with them, rather than just making a purchase from the company. Once you’ve secured the business, they are likely to stay with you for some time, as long as you are working to meet or exceed their expectations.
B2B businesses often think they can automate or dehumanise much of their service and while you may not be dealing with an individual person making a purchase for themselves, it is still important to ensure the human touch is included. People working in other businesses will be happy to work with your business if you show your human too, and they may also be happy to recommend you.
Building Relationships and Loyalty
The challenges in B2B customer service are different to those in customer facing roles but essentially you still have to aim to offer high quality, reliable services where you maintain responsibility and ownership of your offering and handle any issues if they occur. Below are some useful tips for ensuring strong B2B relationships.
1. Know your Customers
Businesses are already aware of the old adage of knowing your customer, so you have to make sure you do your research and know them. Knowing your customer means understanding the mechanics of the business and ethos of the company as a whole, not just the name and contact details of the individual you’re in communication with.
2. Make the Most of Tech and Tools
There are so many technologies and tools out there to help you improve your customer’s experience, it is worth exploring what will work for customer base. Tools which can cut down time spent on communications and speed up the client’s process of accessing your services will be hugely appreciated. They could be something as simple as creating a library of “how-to” videos to demonstrate accessing parts of your service. You should also ensure basics like FAQs pages are properly in place on your website, so you don’t have customers getting in touch with the same questions on repeat.
3. Invest in Relevant Training
The right training can help your staff have the knowledge necessary to deliver the highest levels of customer service for every business they handle for your company. Relevant customer service training helps individual employees reach a consistent high level of service which allows them to understand, meet and exceed the needs of each business they work with.
Customer service differs within every sector and this is even more true when you switch from B2C to B2B businesses. Understanding how to capture, impress and retain a B2B customer is a great skill, and will stand you in good stead as you develop stronger connections with your partner companies.
We offer a range of customer service courses, find out more