How to Deliver Top-Notch Support in the Online Education Industry

Are you looking for ways to improve customer service? If yes, then you should definitely check out these tips.

Customer service has become a key part of every company’s strategy. In fact, according to Forrester Research, companies spend $1.3 trillion annually on customer service. And yet, despite its importance, customer service is often neglected or poorly executed.

To provide excellent customer service, you need to think about your approach. Quality communication is critical to success in the support industry. You can check out these top communication techniques for superb customer support and start improving your support today!

One of the biggest problems in the education sector is a lack of qualified teachers. This means that students often end up having to learn from unqualified tutors.

This issue is especially prevalent among low-income families who cannot afford private tutoring services. To help address this issue, online education platforms like Udemy offer free classes to anyone who wants to learn how to teach others.

This way, people without any teaching experience can still earn money by sharing their knowledge. Even though these online courses are free, they sometimes come at a price: poor customer service. But not just them! All online education platforms that offer their courses globally, struggle to answer thousands requests in a timely manner.

Luckily, there are tools and techniques that can help you turn the things around and keep all your students and their parents happy!

Let's check them out!

How Important Is Customer Service in Online Education?

Customer service is a vital part of every business. In online education, it is even more crucial because students are often at the mercy of their teachers. They rely on them to guide them through the learning process. The teacher must be available and responsive to student questions and concerns. However, that is not always possible and the teachers don't need to worry about technical issues related to your platform functions or the payment structure.

This article will discuss how important customer service is in online education, as well as some tips for providing great customer experiences.

Online Education: What Is It?

In the United States, many educational institutions offer courses online. Some of these include community colleges, private universities, and public schools. During the COVID-19 pandemic, online education has become a necessity! Thus, not just that the online education industry makes the education available to everyone, it also keeps the students healthy.

There are many advantages to taking classes online. For example, you do not have to travel long distances to attend class. You can take your coursework from home or wherever you choose. Many people find this method of studying convenient. However, there are also disadvantages to attending school online. One disadvantage is that you cannot interact with other students face-to-face like you would do that in a classroom. However, there are apps that enable chatting with your classmates and teaches, like Slack. Another disadvantage is that you may miss out on certain opportunities, such as field trips, fun during the breaks between classes, and similar.

How Does Customer Service Affect Online Student Success?

Good customer service can have a positive impact on student success. When teachers provide effective feedback, they help students improve their performance. This helps them learn how to become better at their school tasks. It also allows them to develop self-awareness.

Students who receive poor customer service may not be able to access the resources that would help them learn effectively. For example, if a teacher doesn’t respond to an email or calls, students might miss out on opportunities to practice what they’ve learned.

What should teachers do to ensure good customer service?

Teachers need to make sure they are providing quality customer service, too. To achieve this, they need to:

  • Be responsive to emails and phone calls from students
  • Provide clear information about assignments and deadlines
  • Respond quickly when students ask online questions
  • Make sure all students get the same level of support
  • Give constructive criticism
  • Offer helpful advice
  • Keep track of student progress
  • Encourage students to use social media to share their experiences with other students
  • Use technology to monitor student progress

The good news is that you don’t need to hire a team of full-time employees to provide quality customer service. Instead, you can leverage the power of AI to automate most of the tasks associated with customer service.

Here are ways you can do that.

1. Automate Email Responses

Email is one of the best tools available to businesses. Unfortunately, it's also one of the most time-consuming and insecure communication tools out there. As soon as someone sends you an email, you need to open it, read it, reply, and send another email back. All of this takes time.

You can save yourself a lot of time by using automated emails. These messages will automatically respond to incoming emails that discuss certain common issues you've marked as important.

For example, you can create a template message that includes the sender’s name, subject line, body text, and so on. Then, whenever someone sends you an email with a certain subject line, such as making an order, you can quickly send them the prewritten response.

Let’s say you receive several emails per day about a particular topic, such delivery options. You can set up a rule that automatically responds to those emails with a generic message. Then, when someone sends you an email asking for more specific information related to that topic, you can quickly forward it to your assistant. Your assistant can then take care of the rest.

2. Automate Follow-Up Questions

When someone asks you a question, it’s important to answer it promptly. If you delay responding, you risk losing out on potential sales or leads. Keep in mind that all customers today expect a respnse within 5 minutes.

If you wait too long to respond, you run the risk of annoying the person who sent you the original inquiry.

To avoid such situations, you should always try to answer every question within 24 hours. That said, you can use automation to speed things up. For example, if someone asks you a question about a product or service, you can send them a quick email that contains links to relevant articles or videos.

3. Multi-Channel Support Ticketing

If you have more than one channel where customers can reach you, you might want to consider automating your replies to all of them. For example, let’s assume you have a website, Facebook page, Twitter account, and phone number. Whenever someone contacts you via one of these channels, you can use automation software to handle the conversation. To do this, you need an effective tool to track all your help emails and tickets in a single integrated place, such as a secure CRM platform.

In addition to saving you valuable time, this approach helps ensure consistency across all communication channels:

Live Chat

Live chat is a great tool for providing instant customer service. However, it requires human interaction. That means you need to be able to talk to each individual customer. It also means that you need to monitor live chats throughout the day.

Fortunately, many tools make it easy to manage multiple live chats at once. For example, you can use Slack, Skype, Google Hangouts, and others. Helpy connect is a great self-hosted chat software for customer support live chats that you can invest in right now.

Offer AI Chat

You can also use AI chat to resolve customer service issues. This way, you can connect with your customers instantly and address their concerns and completely own their chat expereince.

Self-Serve Help Center

Many companies offer self-service options for their products and services. This allows customers to access detailed documentation without having to contact customer service.

Unfortunately, not everyone knows how to find this information. As a result, they end up contacting customer service instead. You can check out these top 5 tips for choosing the right helpdesk solutions for effective customer service.

You can solve this problem by creating a dedicated help center. Then, you can add a link to it from any relevant pages and even to your live and AI chat if you opt for a secure service. By doing so, you allow people to easily locate answers to frequently asked questions. In turn, you reduce the amount of time you spend answering queries.

4. Concentrate on Security in the Customer Support Department

As we discussed earlier, security is very important in the customer support department. It doesn’t matter whether you work as an independent contractor or as part of a large organization. The most important thing is that you keep your data safe.

The best way to do that is to hire a professional IT team. They will be responsible for keeping everything secure.

They can also provide regular updates to your company’s network and systems.

5. Provide Clear Instructions

Your customers shouldn’t have to figure things out by themselves. Make sure that you include detailed step-by-step instructions for everything you offer.

This way, your customers won’t have any problems getting started. You can also create tutorials to help them along the way.

6. Be Available

Your customers should always know where to find answers to their questions. That means that you should respond quickly whenever they contact you.

When you don’t respond right away, they might give up and try another provider. So make sure that you answer emails within 24 hours.

7. Use Social Media

Social media can be a great tool for providing customer service because your customers are already there. However, it is certanly not the most secure one.

8. Be Friendly and Helpful

The first thing that customers notice about your company is how you treat them. You want to make sure they feel welcome and appreciated. Make it easy for them to contact you by providing clear instructions and information about how to reach you.

9. Incorporate Exceptional Communication Skills

Customers expect you to respond quickly to their questions and concerns. To do this, you must be able to communicate clearly with them. This means being polite, courteous, and professional at all times. It also means listening carefully when they talk to you. Here are the top tips on top-notch customer support skills.

10. Be Proactive

You can help customers solve problems faster if you proactively address issues before they arise. Customers appreciate prompt responses to their inquiries. They also like it when you send follow-up emails so that they don’t have to ask again.

11. Create an Environment Where People Feel Comfortable Talking to You

You can create a positive experience for customers by making sure that your employees are welcoming and polite to every customer.

Customer support is essential to the success of any business. Therefore, it makes sense to invest some money into improving your operations.

There are several ways to go about it. You can start with the ones listed above. Hopefully, they will help you improve your overall performance.

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