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Business owners, good customer service is necessary for business growth. The way you or your staff interact with your customers can make or break your company, so this isn’t an area you want to overlook. Many CEOs have learned the hard way that providing a good or service is not enough to keep their customers coming back. However, superb customer service skills can help you retain customers, boost sales, and build a solid reputation.

While the majority of business owners intend to provide good customer service, sometimes other business responsibilities get in the way. It’s difficult to respond to emails and phone calls in a timely fashion when you’re overwhelmed by other tasks on your ever-growing to-do list. A growing business can easily pull you in many different directions, and inevitably, the ball will get dropped somewhere. Therefore, to avoid losing clients or having leads make their way to your competitors, it might be best to hire a customer support virtual assistant.

What is a Virtual Customer Support Assistant?

A customer service virtual assistant is someone who acts as a point of contact between a company and its customers. Their responsibilities are similar to that of customer service representatives and client relationship managers, except they work remotely.

Many virtual assistants who specialize in customer support are self-employed, meaning that they’re business owners themselves. As a result, you don’t have to pay for insurance benefits, workers’ compensation, paid time off, etc. They are responsible for those things, as well as providing their own work equipment.

Why Hire a Customer Support Virtual Assistant?

Maybe you’re on the fence about hiring someone to handle your customer service tasks, but here are a few things to consider:

  • Almost 90% of people are more likely to make another purchase after a good customer service experience.
  • Nearly 70% of individuals state that they are willing to pay more for products and services from a company known to offer good customer service experiences.
  • Boosting customer retention rates by just 5% can increase profits by between 25% and 95%.
  • Over half of customers switch to a competitor after just one poor experience.

In a nutshell, customer service is pretty important! But we understand that it can be time-consuming to handle on your own. A customer support virtual assistant is a flexible and budget-friendly solution for those who aren’t quite ready to hire a part-time or full-time employee. Maybe you just need someone who can provide assistance on your busier days or during those times when you need to step away from your business. An experienced virtual customer support assistant can step in when you need them most and adapt to your changing business needs.

What Qualities Do Great Customer Support Virtual Assistants Have?

There are certain traits you should look for when hiring someone for a client-facing position. We’d say that the best customer service virtual assistants have the following skills:

  • Conflict resolution: When a customer brings up an issue with a product or service, the virtual assistant should respond with a satisfactory solution that aligns with company policies.
  • Adaptable: The ideal virtual assistant will easily adjust to changing expectations, trends, strategies, etc.
  • Active listener: A customer service virtual assistant should fully listen to the client, ensure they understand their request, and respond thoughtfully.
  • Emotional intelligence: If a customer is disrespectful during an interaction, you want a virtual assistant to remain calm and professional the entire time. They should be able to manage their emotions at all times.
  • Effective written and verbal communication: Whether speaking with a client over the phone or sending an email or text, a customer support virtual assistant should communicate clearly and consistently.

When is the Best Time to Hire a Customer Support Virtual Assistant?

virtual customer support assistantTiming matters when hiring a virtual assistant. If you hire way too early, you may find yourself lacking tasks to give to your virtual assistant, which isn’t ideal for either party. And if you hire too late, you risk having unsatisfied clients who are displeased with the level of communication. This can be disastrous for small businesses, as it’s much more difficult for them to recover from poor remarks.

As a result, we think it’s better to hire someone before you absolutely need to. Waiting until you’re already spread too thin will make it difficult to organize the onboarding of a customer support VA. Keep in mind that hiring and training someone takes time and patience. If it’s already chaotic, trying to add someone else to the mix may make it harder for them to help you. So, here’s what we suggest:

  • If you’re starting to miss deadlines, orders are going unfulfilled, and customers are waiting days to hear back from you, hire a customer support VA.
  • If you have employees who find it difficult to process orders and respond to lead and customer inquiries, hire a virtual customer support assistant.
  • Are you starting to say “no” to new clients because you fear that you won’t be able to keep up? If yes, then it’s likely time to hire someone.
  • If your high-value employees are spending too much time doing mundane work that doesn’t utilize the skill set you hired them for, you should hire a customer service virtual assistant.

10 Tasks a Virtual Customer Support Assistant Can Do

Are you uncertain about the tasks you could assign to a customer support VA? Not a problem! They could help your business by:

  1. Resolving customer complaints
  2. Responding to lead and customer inquiries
  3. Interacting with customers via multiple channels: text, email, phone calls, chat, Slack, etc.
  4. Being knowledgeable about products and services and then relaying that information to others
  5. Maintaining records of customer interactions and transactions
  6. Upselling offers
  7. Processing orders
  8. Reaching out to previous customers to inform them of new products and services
  9. Identifying ways to improve the customer service process
  10. Sending order updates so customers know what’s happening every step of the way

While there’s a lot more that customer support virtual assistants can do, we wanted to name a few to help you think about how they could assist you.

How Can I Prepare for a Virtual Customer Support Assistant?

Proper preparation is the key to having a smooth hiring experience. The last thing you want to do when hiring a virtual assistant is “wing it.” This method will make it difficult for you and your future virtual professional, so it’s better to be proactive about the process. Therefore, here are some suggestions on how to best prepare:

  • Create a complete list of tasks that you currently do
    • Circle the tasks you don’t like to do and don’t know how to do, as these are the to-dos you should delegate
    • Place an asterisk by the tasks that you’ll keep as a business owner
  • Document work instructions (aka SOPs) so your future virtual assistant can refer to those when needed unless you want them to do tasks their own way
  • Decide how many hours you’ll need your virtual assistant per month
  • Determine your budget for hiring a virtual assistant, including any software they may need to work within your business
  • Schedule a discovery call with Imperative Concierge Services so we can match you to the best virtual assistant(s) for your personal and business needs

Ready to Find Your Ideal Virtual Customer Support Assistant?

customer support virtual assistant

If you’re tired of handling all of the customer support to-dos yourself or want your employees to focus on other tasks, you’re at the right place. Since 2015, we’ve matched our clients with high-quality, U.S.-based virtual assistants who are ready to use their experience to help you. All you need to do now is schedule a discovery call below so we can learn more about your business needs. We can assist you with personal matters as well if that’s something you’re looking for.

Our mission is to make outsourcing seamless for busy professionals like yourself. By partnering with us, you don’t have to create or post a job description, review hundreds of portfolios, or try to schedule multiple interviews. We’ll handle the time-consuming details because we know you’re already busy enough. Then, once we align you with your virtual assistant, we’ll continue to support you every step of the way.

Book A Discovery Call Today