Best practices for creating effective customer email templates
Great customer service is what will make your business flow, grow, and thrive. But how can you be sure you’re providing the best customer service possible, without recreating the wheel with every piece of communication?
That’s easy. Put customer service email templates in place that address your most common FAQs and pain points. This will save your team’s valuable time, save your customers’ time, and build customer loyalty.
In this article, we’re going to look at best practices for building and maintaining email templates, how they help your brand, and how they will strengthen customer loyalty.
Best practices for making and maintaining email templates
Having email templates in place will help create a consistent brand voice and loyalty, but what are the best practices for creating and maintaining your email template?
Let’s look at what elements to include and what kind of things you should consider when making your email templates. You want to create a process for writing and approving your email templates that will ensure that you stay on brand and provide the right message at the right time.
1. Use a clear subject line to grab your customer’s attention. “Customer service follow-up” or “Next steps from customer service” show your customers that the email contains service information rather than marketing messages.
2. Be concise so that you don’t waste your customer’s time.
3. Personalize whenever possible so that your customers feel like you’re speaking directly to them.
4. Use approved language, logos, fonts, and colors for your company and your brand. Your marketing team should sign off on your templates with your brand's logo design.
5. Label your templates correctly so that your customer service team can easily grab and personalize the correct template.
6. Always include contact information in your email templates, in case customers have follow-up questions.
7. Remember to include an opt-out link in your email.
8. Review and update your email templates regularly to ensure that the information, processes, and contacts they include are current.
9. Track performance to see which templates are working best and which need changes to serve customers better.
Examples of email templates
There are so many customer service email templates you can create. Here are some examples:
- Welcome/new client onboarding confirms to the customer that they’ve been added to your system and lets them know what they can expect next.
- New issue responses can tell your customers that their issue is your top priority.
- Respond to ongoing issues, requests for more information, and customer satisfaction messages in a way that will tell your customers that you’ve received their message and will get back to them soon with more information.
- Let your happy customers know they are appreciated and that you’re happy to be servicing them well.
- Strike the right tone with upset customers, who can be difficult to respond to. A prepared email template can reduce the temptation to respond with the same tone, while assuring them that you’re working diligently to correct the problem.
- Feature requests can be acknowledged with a thank you and appreciation for sharing an idea.
- Let your customers know that their service renewal will be processed soon.
- Respond appropriately to return and refund requests with the next steps.
- Discount requests can be responded to with a yes or a no and how to proceed.
- Direct clients to an existing resource to answer their questions.
- Service interruptions can be quickly and easily responded to, so that your clients know you are taking care of their issues.
- Review requests can be sent after a service is performed, or after resolving an issue, to evaluate your processes and or your teams’ effectiveness.
Not only can you create email templates for common issues, but you can create workflows to carry your team through the customer service process.
For example, an issue is received.
- You would start with an issue response template.
- Next would be a follow-up template to make sure the issue was properly resolved.
- Last is a review request so that you can evaluate your service and process.
Here’s what that could look like if a customer emails you a refund request.
- Your team uses your “refund request received” template to acknowledge receipt of the request and let the customer know what their next steps are.
- Once the item is returned and the return processed, the “return completed” template email would be sent to the customer, confirming that the transaction is done.
- You could also send a feedback request email to learn how you could have had a different outcome. Maybe the product description needs more detail, or shipping needs to be faster.
How email templates can help your brand
The cost of bad or poor customer service can be significant. So how can email templates help you save customers? Email templates can help your team respond faster and use a consistent tone that properly defines your brand.
More than half (58%) of American consumers will switch companies because of poor customer service, per Microsoft. That’s over half of your customers that could walk out the door because of a bad customer service experience. I don’t know many businesses that can afford to lose 58% of their client base.
Not only that, but it costs 5 times more to get a new customer than it does to keep one. So, it makes good financial and marketing sense to keep your existing customers happy.
How email templates can build customer loyalty
Customer loyalty is a result of good customer service. When your customers are loyal, the retention rate increases, as does the customer lifetime value.
According to the 2020 Achieving Customer Amazement Study, 96% of consumers will dump a brand after a bad customer service experience. However, 62% are willing to pay more for good customer service.
I have always thought that an issue is an opportunity to make a customer happy about a bad situation. Having email templates in place for common issues will help to ensure that your team is responding quickly and with the correct tone.
For example, imagine there is a shipping delay for a specific product that several of your clients need. Your team saw this delay coming and found an alternative solution that may work for some of your clients. So, your customer service team created an email template to identify the problem and provide a possible solution quickly and accurately.
When your team can customize the email templates they use, based on the customer’s profile and past customer service interactions across channels, you can enhance the customer experience even more, leading to greater customer loyalty.
Customer service email templates can help ensure that your team responds in the way that you want your brand to be known: Superior.
Want more inspiration for improving your organization’s customer service? Learn more about using Trengo for email management and ticketing and get our white paper on best practices for ecommerce customer service.