Here’s the good news: For everything that can go wrong in a customer conversation, a whole lot more can go right.
You have far more opportunities to say the right thing and create an outstanding experience. Even better, you can capitalize on those great conversations.
Almost 75% of customers say they’ve spent more money with a company because they had a great experience, an American Express survey found.
The quality of the interactions customers have with front-line employees has a huge impact on their experiences. When employees say the right thing with a sincere tone, they set the stage for great interactions and better memories.
Here are 11 of the best things you can say to customers — plus some twists on them:
1. ‘Let me take care of that for you’
Whew! Did you feel the weight lift off your customers’ shoulders? It will feel like that for them when you tell them you’ll take care of everything now.
Also say, “It’ll be my pleasure to help you with that,” or “Let me take over and get this resolved quickly.”
2. ‘Here’s how to reach me’
Make customers feel like they have an inside connection. Give them easy access to the help or advice they want.
Also say, “You can contact me directly at …,” or “Let me give you my email address so you can reach out any time.”
3. ‘What can I do to help you?’
This is so much better than, “Next,” “Account number” or “What do you need?” It conveys that you’re ready to help, not just respond.
Also say, “How can I help you?” or “Tell me what I can do for you.”
4. ‘I can solve this for you’
Those few words can make customers smile immediately after they’ve explained a problem or conveyed some confusion.
Also say, “Let’s get this fixed right now,” or “I know what to do.”
5. ‘I may not know now, but I will find out’
Most customers don’t expect the person who takes their calls or emails to know the answer to everything right away. But they do hope that person will know where to look. Assure them that they’re right.
Also say, “I know who can answer this and I’ll get her on the line with us now,” or “Mary has those numbers. I’m going to include her in our email.”
6. ‘I will keep you updated …’
The most important part of this statement is the follow-through. Tell customers when and how you’ll keep them updated on something that’s not resolved, then do it.
Also say, “I will email you status reports every morning this week until it’s fixed,” or “Expect a call from me on Thursday with this week’s progress.”
7. ‘I take responsibility …’
You don’t have to take responsibility for a mistake or miscommunication, but when customers contact you, they do expect you take responsibility for an answer or solution. Make them feel like they’ve contacted the right person by telling them you’ll take charge.
Also say, “I will see this through,” or “I’ll have this resolved for you by end of day.”
8. ‘It will be just what you want’
When you tell customers that you have listened to and followed through on what they want, it’s that last little reassurance that they’re doing business with a good company and good people.
Also say, “We’ll have it done just like you want it,” or “I will make sure it’s exactly what you expect.”
9. ‘Monday, it is’
Give customers assurance they can depend on your timeliness. When they ask for a follow-up, answer, solution or delivery, assure them that their expectation is yours, too. Don’t leave wiggle room with tentative language such as, “We’ll shoot for Monday.”
Also say, “Monday means Monday,” or “It will be complete Monday.”
10. ‘I appreciate your business’
A sincere thank you from one person to another in a business relationship is much better than the annual holiday card or marketing promotion that says, “We appreciate your business.”
Also say, “It’s always nice to work with you,” or “I appreciate helping customers as good as you.”
11. ‘I know you’ve been a customer for a long time, and I appreciate your loyalty’
Recognize customers who’ve gone out of their way to stick with you. There are a lot of easy-outs and deals for there, and they’ve made a decision to be loyal to you.
Avoid saying, “I see that you’ve been a customer …” That implies that you just noticed because you saw it on a screen. Let them know that you know they’re loyal.
Also say, “Thanks for being our customer for 22 years. It means a lot to our success.”
Keep going: Now that you’re familiar with the best things to say to customers, check out the 11 worst things to say — so you can avoid them.