December 1, 2023

How to Create a Successful Holiday Customer Service Strategy

Unlock the secrets to a thriving holiday season with our expert guide on crafting a winning customer service strategy. Learn proven tactics and essential tips to create memorable customer experiences during the holidays. Elevate your business with our comprehensive insights for a successful festive season!
How to Create a Successful Holiday Customer Service Strategy
How to Create a Successful Holiday Customer Service Strategy

As the demand for holiday gifts rises, it is important that you have a solid customer service strategy ready. 

According to statistics, websites receive 63% more online traffic during the festive season. Your ecommerce store will most likely experience an increase in traffic during the holiday season and it is crucial that you are prepared for just about anything. 

From Black Friday to Cyber Monday, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas, one of the major keys to success during the holidays is providing a good customer experience. 

Are you thinking of how to create the best customer service strategy for the holiday? Read on as we unwrap some customer service strategies that can help you spread some good cheer to your customers while increasing your sales and revenue. Let’s dive in! 

Why create a holiday customer service strategy? 

Before we unpack strategies that can take your customer service to the next level this holiday, let’s take a look at why it is important to create a customer service strategy for the holiday season. 

First, it is important to note that good customer service isn’t just about resolving customer problems. It is a strategy that can help build lasting customer relationships. Good customer service is about creating positive experiences that make your customers feel heard and understood. 

Secondly, good customer service can help you stand out from the competition. As more customers troop into your store, you can create a lasting impact that leads to customer loyalty. Happy customers will also spread the word about your brand increasing brand awareness and potential sales. 

Lastly, customer service is also crucial for revenue generation. The more you create positive experiences, the more smoother transactions you can secure, increasing sales and revenue. 

So beyond the holiday season, providing customer service should be a key part of your business strategy. 

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10 effective strategies for successful customer service during the holiday season 

Perhaps you haven’t made plans for customer service this holiday or you want to turn your customer service from good to great. Here are a few effective strategies you can implement this holiday season: 

  1. Plan ahead 
  2. Implement multi-channel customer support 
  3. Take advantage of chatbots and AI
  4. Create holiday-specific FAQs
  5. Keep an eye on social media interactions
  6. Give specialized training to your team
  7. Maintain high-quality customer service standards
  8. Resolve customer complaints promptly 
  9. Extend your customer support hours 
  10. Do a post-holiday follow-up

Plan ahead 

If you aren’t planning ahead for the holiday surge, you are already falling behind. The last thing you want to do is try to squeeze it all at the last minute. The earlier you make plans, the more likely you are to deliver exceptional customer support.

So how do you plan ahead? Well, this can mean different things for different businesses. It could mean preparing your marketing team for a product launch or getting a budget for extra staff. It could also mean investing in a unique customer service tool or software. Perhaps the most obvious way to plan ahead is to align key holiday dates with your business and your team. 

Planning ahead ensures that your team is speaking the same language and all parts of your business are aligned towards delivering excellent customer service. 

Planning ahead also helps you avoid repetitive or unnecessary tasks, leaving you with more time to converse with customers and build quality relationships. 

Implement multi-channel customer support 

Multichannel customer support involves being where your customers are most comfortable. In other words, creating a multichannel customer support system will involve meeting your customers where they are no matter what platform they choose. So, a customer may have bought a Christmas gift on your ecommerce website and decided to quickly ask a question via social media to get a quick response. As an ecommerce business owner, you will benefit from having a good combination of customer support channels including phone calls, emails, live chat, and social media. 

With this strategy, your customers are at liberty to reach out to you through whatever channel they like ensuring you create a pleasant and stress-free customer experience. 

Creating multiple channels is great. However, you want to ensure that each of these channels has quick and seamless customer support.  

Take advantage of chatbots and AI

Over the years, the number of businesses implementing Chatbots and Artificial Intelligence has surged significantly. 81% of customers prefer self-service options before speaking to a customer service representative. 

Taking advantage of chatbots and AI during the holiday season can help you be on standby 24/7. This means that you can constantly interact with your customers no matter their time zone. 

Chatbots can help you answer quick and easy queries while leaving the more complex ones for customer care agents. So, if a customer wants to know how long an order will take to arrive, chatbots and AI can quickly deliver the answer without the customer waiting for a representative. Ultimately, this ensures that all customer queries are resolved providing a smooth customer experience during the holiday season. It also lightens the load on your customer support agents, giving them more time to build valuable relationships with customers. 

Some AI customer support software includes Tidio, HubSpot, ClickUp, Abbot, etc. 

Create holiday-specific FAQs

Sometimes shoppers won’t have the time to wait for a response to their queries, especially if it’s a simple and common one. Creating a holiday-specific FAQ can serve as a guide as customers shop for their favorite items in your store. 

Prepare and expand your FAQ to include common questions that customers will ask during the festive season. Prepare pre-written and helpful information that brings clarity and saves everyone’s time. 

FAQs also help to bring consistency to your brand. Customers may have access to all sorts of information to certain questions about your brand. However, having an FAQ section provides a location to access one truth, increasing credibility and trust. 

Ultimately, this helps create a seamless and positive customer experience during the holiday season. 

Keep an eye on social media interactions

A strong social media visibility is crucial to a successful customer service strategy. You will be missing out on a large chunk of the picture if you only limit your customer support to phone calls and emails. 

Most consumers will go on social media to look for products. In fact, social media is a major influence throughout every stage of a customer’s buying journey. A lot of customers are influenced to buy products through social media. 

According to Instagram, 70% of shoppers turn to their platform for their best purchase. Phrases like “TikTok made me buy it” only reveal the massive influence social media has on a consumer’s buying decision. 

During the holiday season, we can only expect that social media influence and interactions will increase. To create a successful customer service strategy, it is important to keep an eye on social media. By doing so, you can receive feedback and catch some reviews or concerns. This can help you respond to customer concerns promptly and show that you care. 

Give specialized training to your team

Specialized training with your customer team can equip them with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed during the holiday season. Your customers will have questions that are unique to the holiday season. For example, they may have questions relating to gift suggestions, order status, and even returns. Your team must be specially trained to resolve holiday-related questions effectively. 

Your team should also be able to work with customer service tools to ensure a smooth customer experience. 

By training your team effectively, you can increase the rate of positive customer interactions increasing customer loyalty, sales, and revenue. 

Maintain high-quality customer service standards

The secret to creating an unforgettable customer experience is to maintain high-quality customer service standards. Maintaining high-quality customer service standards helps to infuse consistency and excellence while creating a delightful customer experience. 

High-quality standards go beyond meeting customer expectations, it seeks to go above and beyond customer expectations, creating a pleasant experience during the holidays. 

When customers meet a certain standard, it lets them know that your brand is always ready to meet their expectations every single time. 

So, this holiday season set high-quality standards and ensure that those standards are communicated to every member of your team. 

Resolve customer complaints promptly 

While it’s a season of good cheer, there will be times when something doesn’t go right. You may experience moments of delayed orders or damaged products. This can leave your customers feeling frustrated. However, a quick and sincere response can turn the tide and endear customers to your brand. 

Plan effectively for conflict resolution and train members of your team to resolve conflicts with empathy and efficient problem-solving. 

If a customer is upset about something, respond in a friendly manner and seek to resolve the problem as quickly as possible. With a good conflict management strategy, you can turn those frowns into delighted smiles. 

Extend your customer support hours 

A customer may have questions about an order placed at night and needs to get a quick response. This is where having extended customer support hours can be helpful. 

You want to provide a 24/7 support system that caters to the late-nighters and early birds. This way, you can attend to all kinds of customers and avoid losing out on potential sales. Automation and AI tools can help create extended customer support hours. You can also have your customer service team work by shift. Alternatively, you can hire additional staff to provide some additional support. 

Do a post-holiday follow-up

Once the holidays have come to an end, you also want to do a post-holiday follow-up. Think of it as saying the vote of thanks after a party. Send thank you messages to customers expressing your gratitude to them and checking to find out how their experience was. This will also help you collect useful feedback that can help you improve your customer service and increase customer loyalty.  

Wrapping up: customer service strategies for the holiday season 

A solid customer service strategy will leave a lasting impact even after the Christmas decorations are down.

From implementing multichannel support to creating holiday-specific FAQs, and extending customer support hours. 

You can address customer concerns and create exceptional customer experiences that increase repeat purchases and engagements. 

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