Is your inbox overflowing? Email can often seem like a low priority when it comes to dealing with customers, but responding quickly and courteously can turn a complaint into a compliment. Here are our top tips to help you send effective customer emails.
Whether it’s an inquiry about your daily specials, a request to put a product on hold or a complaint, chances are good that the customer who wrote it is looking for a fast response. If you struggle to wade through your daily email deluge, consider setting up an automatic reply that acknowledges receipt of the message, gives an alternative mode of communication for urgent questions and sets a time frame for the response. You could also add links to things like your Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page and your business hours in your signature to provide essential information quickly. Bear in mind that if the customer is writing to complain, a quick response may keep them from posting anything negative online.
Keep it brief
Nobody wants an abrupt response to their email but essays are no better. Keep your emails polite and succinct and use an appropriate tone. If the customer seems annoyed, keep it formal. If they send a chatty email, then an equally casual response works well. Just make sure to match the salutation (For example, don’t respond to ‘Dear Sir/Madam’ with ‘hey!’).
Be helpful and stay positive
If you’re not sure exactly what your customer is asking, politely ask for clarification. Avoid using words and phrases like “no,” “unfortunately” and “we can’t.” Instead, try to explain and offer a solution while providing some context to your answers. If they want something that’s out of stock, suggest another product that might work. If you can’t accommodate a request, try to find a compromise to foster a positive relationship. You should also avoid other words that make communication less effective. Inc. has a handy list of trigger words to keep out of your correspondence.
Don’t send spam
Newsletters are a great way to keep customers informed of company updates, offers and events. But make sure you only send messages for which you have received the recipient’s consent, and make sure you understand and comply with Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL).
Keep your responses snappy and upbeat — and don’t forget to call or email our Support Centre if you need any assistance with your Square service.