Customer service is a catch-22 situation. On the one hand, you must be efficient, fast, and helpful. At the same time, your customer service has to feel personal, empathetic, and confident.

So, how can you give your customer service a personal touch while keeping things moving at the pace you need for good growth?

Use the right software

Zendesk call center software can make all the difference to your customer service experience. The omnichannel integration allows your agents to see all communications from a caller across all channels. This eliminates frustration for customers who don’t understand why the person they’re talking to on the phone doesn’t know about the email they wrote last week.

Call center software also routes incoming calls to the best agent to deal with a problem. This makes your agents more efficient while also providing the highest level of service to your customers and customizing their experience.

Help agents learn how to treat people as individuals

Efficient customer service is all about speedy solutions. Personal customer service balances that need with the reality that every person calling with an issue is an individual with unique needs.

To do this effectively, agents have to be able to take a moment to put themselves into the customer’s shoes. How would they feel if they had this problem? What would they be worried about? Thinking along these lines, agents will be able to provide service that feels unique to each caller.

Prioritize soft skills among your agents

The best agent isn’t necessarily the one who can blow through the most calls in an hour, or even the one who brings in the most money. While converting callers is very important, that’s a short-sighted goal.

Ultimately, the agents who provide personalized customer service that gets people talking about your company in a positive way may be providing more value in their hour at the desk than someone else who brings in more revenue in the moment. Communication skills, a positive attitude, critical thinking ability, and good listening and persuasion skills are crucial.

Make your website more personal

You might not think your website has much to do with a personalized customer service experience, but it can be extremely valuable. To personalize, you need to be relevant to each individual’s needs. If every link a potential customer clicks on takes them to your home page, you’re not offering a relevant experience.

Most home pages have more than one call to action and can be tricky to navigate. Instead, tailor your incoming link buttons to take people to pages that are more relevant to the needs they’re online for at the moment.

Reach out at the right moment

If you overwhelm people with calls and emails, you’ll just turn them away. You have a better chance of earning and keeping customer loyalty by learning what they really need and reaching out when you have something relevant to them personally.

Make a note when people ask about things that are out of stock, and be sure to let them know when that item is back in. Pay attention to the type of things they tend to buy and let them know when something similar (but not identical) comes around.

Make sure everyone is satisfied

Customers like knowing that you think of them as more than just dollar signs. Always follow up transactions with calls or emails to make sure people are satisfied and to genuinely ask for feedback.

By inviting genuine feedback, you invite people to become a part of your business. This gives them a stake in who you are, however small, that usually translates into greater loyalty and positive discussion on social media.