Customer service has long been the differentiating factor between successful and unsuccessful businesses.
Previously perceived as a necessary constraint that just handled customer complaints and / or problems, customer service has evolved toward an essential role. What if businesses viewed customer service not as a cost but as an investment to boost sales and strengthen ties with customers?
Many businesses have made customer service their priority and have managed to obtain great results. Their recipes: fulfilled and empowered advisers who respond to clients without scripts, and managers that are involved, at the highest level, in the client service process.
Need help transitioning to a more successful form of customer service? There are a few books out there to help you get the best practice in customer relations. Here are our favorite 6 customer service books to help you get started building a strong foundation for customer service.
Must-read books about customer service
The Nordstrom Way to Customer Service Excellence
by Robert Spector and Breanne O. Reeves
There have been several revisions of this customer service Bible, all excellent. If you’re looking for a guide to help your e-commerce or retail business, then look no further. Based on their own experience of successful online fashion business, they explain how they put the primary focus on their customer and how they make their business extremely customer-friendly.
Outside In: The Power of Putting Customers at the Center of Your Business
by Harley Manning, Kerry Bodine
This book will help you understand the power of putting your customers first while diving deeper with solid examples of businesses that have become customer-centric. It goes in detail into how they did it and how they benefited. This book provides great tools for creating the best practice framework for your customer service team.
Be our guest
by Ted Kinni and Wendy Lefkon
This book from the Disney institute is a real gold mine that explains how Disney created its magical customer experience across its parks and stores. It’s a quick read (200 pages) that gives immediately actionable tips on how to provide quality customer service. It will convince you to go the extra mile for your customers, and how to make them feel special. If your business operates face-to-face with customers, it is a must read. If your business is purely online, the tips are still easily translatable to online customer support.
The Effortless Experience: Conquering the New Battleground for Customer Loyalty
by Matthew Dixon, Nick Toman, Rick DeLisi
This book has a real twist. If you don’t subscribe to the idea of over-pleasing the customer to obtain customer loyalty, then this is the book to read. This book explains a method that goes against mainstream ideas of wooing the customer, and instead explores making the customer experience a smooth and “effortless” experience. The kicker? It doesn’t just explore theories, but backs them up with case studies and data. If you want a light and quick read that goes against the grain, this is the book for you.
How to Wow: 68 Effortless Ways to Make Every Customer Experience Amazing
by Adrian Swinscoe
This book provides an essential checklist exercise with precise tips on improving your customer service. The real value-adds within this book are the various different scenarios you may find yourself in, with precise use cases you can apply to your customer service process. This essential will provide you with a complete and holistic guide on how to best engage with your customers.
Customer Success: How Innovative Companies Are Reducing Churn and Growing Recurring Revenue
by Nick Mehta, Dan Steinman, Lincoln Murphy
If you’re starting your journey in the customer experience world, especially if your business provides SaaS, then this book is the one for you. This book provides a great introduction into the basics of how to create a successful customer service team. The above books are great for deep in-depth analysis of customer success strategies, but if you are at the early stages of building your customer success team, or simply looking for a broad overview on building a successful customer service team, then you will want this book.
Get more business with good customer service
Why do you need to improve your customer service? One simple reason: taking care of your customers ensures you their loyalty and commitment, the two components of the recipe for success.
Unless you sell an exclusive, unbeatable, and extremely low-cost product, you’re going to have some competition. To sustain profitability, you need your customers to choose you, again and again, so that they continue to return to your site and remain subscribed to your products and services.
Of course, your product is important, but you will have a hard time surviving without excellent customer service.
Not convinced? A Gartner study from 2014 indicated that 64% of customers care more about the customer service than the price of the product. Knowing that a 5% increase in the retention rate on the best customers can generate up to a 75% increase in profits (cross-selling, upmarket, sale of accessories, etc.) according to another study by Bain & Co, it is essential to provide the best customer service you can.
Invest in your customer service team, and your customers will invest in you.
Hopefully, our recommendations of the best books on customer service have convinced you to prioritize a customer success team and made it easy for you to take action.
Let us know if you have any book recommendations that we missed here!