customer support

How to build a great CX/support team on a budget

Photo of Mikayla Fuller
by   Mikayla Fuller
March 9, 2023

Customer satisfaction is the fuel that keeps the train running. Happy customers lead to loyalty, better reviews, and repeat purchases that keep your business going at full steam. This requires an experienced and highly skilled team of customer support specialists who can continue to raise the bar on what excellent customer support means. 

Over the years, we have built customer support teams for hundreds of companies. Trust us when we say we know customer support in and out. These tips will get you on the right track to building your customer support team, even with a budget that may seem impossible. 

What makes a good customer support team? 

A good customer support team is crucial to building and maintaining a loyal customer base. Successful customer support teams should have representatives who are knowledgeable about the product or service and have the skills necessary to provide top-tier support. Representatives should be able to actively listen to customers’ concerns, show empathy for their situation, and provide timely solutions. This team should be flexible in their approach to problem-solving and be able to adapt to changing customer needs. 

Now, let’s build the customer support team of your dreams! 

How to build a great customer support team on a budget

1. Define ‘great customer experience’ for your business

Knowing your customers and what they expect from your business is an important starting point for building your customer support team. This will prevent you from failure, wasted time, and unnecessary expenses. 

To define what a great customer experience means for your business, first, identify your target customers by analyzing your existing customer base and creating buyer personas to represent your ideal customer. Then, map your customer journey, including different stages and touchpoints. Using customer surveys, feedback forms, reviews, and social media identify any areas for improvement. Finally, define your customer experience goals, such as increasing satisfaction or reducing response times. 

Your customer experience objectives should be clear, measurable, and achievable, and state how you will meet customer needs. These goals will help you identify which channels you should offer support on, the necessary resources, and metrics to analyze for measuring success. 

2. Proactively hire the right people

Customer support requires a specific set of skills to ensure that customers receive the best possible experience when interacting with a business. Some of the critical skills you should look for in customer support representatives are: 

  • Excellent communication
  • Active listening 
  • Empathy 
  • Problem-solving 
  • Time management 
  • Patience
  • Positive attitude
  • Technical knowledge 

Hiring the right people is crucial, especially regarding customer-facing interactions. Ask the right interview questions, make your onboarding process seamless, and search for highly skilled individuals that match your company values to build a team of competent support professionals. 

3. Skill train your team 

If you don’t have the resources to hire customer support staff or if your team can take on support tasks, skills training is a budget-friendly alternative to recruiting. Skills training refers to an employer-providing program that teaches or develops proficiencies for the workplace.

Customer-centric businesses train all of their employees in customer service since it impacts every aspect of a company. Skills training may mean broad customer service training for the whole team. It may also mean a more focused education for junior members and team members who can wear multiple hats to understand what goes into customer service and where they can help. 

Customer service training provides your team with the necessary resources to help them succeed. A collaborative, knowledge-sharing culture ensures everyone is on the same page and can provide consistent and effective customer support. 

4. Transition to remote work 

Remote work helps to reduce operational costs while maintaining efficiency. According to FlexJobs…

Working remotely on a full-time basis could result in annual savings of up to $12,000. 

Besides saving money, remote work can broaden your search to include professionals across the country or even the globe. Finding the right support team can be difficult, mainly if you are limited to only local talent. 

Here at Influx, we’re big supporters of remote work. Our team is fully remote and spread across 123+ cities globally to provide round-the-clock solutions. If you don’t already offer remote work, we highly recommend giving it a go. 

5. Offer a knowledge base 

A knowledge base is a self-serve online library of information about a product, service, department, or topic. According to Aspect Software, 73% of customers want the ability to solve product/service issues independently. Self-service solutions are not only preferred by customers, but they are available 24/7 for more agile and efficient service. 

In the long run, investing in a self-service system saves a lot of money by enabling you to reduce responsibilities for your support staff. As a cost-effective resource, a knowledge base can facilitate customer support interactions and increase customer satisfaction by encouraging autonomy. 

6. Leverage technology 

Use technology to automate routine tasks and free up your team’s time to focus on more complex customer issues. This can include help desks, customer relationship management (CRM) software, or chat support. Although customer service software can often be pricey, there are free options equipped to handle everything from communication to invoices. 

Companies can use a range of tools both on the customer side and internally on the representative side. This allows for a seamless and robust omnichannel experience. According to CStore Decisions…

87% of customers expect a consistent experience across channels. 

Technology can ease the strain of repetitive tasks and help keep your queries organized for more efficient and consistent support. Be sure to test any new technology before fully implementing it to ensure everything runs smoothly. 

7. Scale customer support with outsourcing

Customer support outsourcing gives you access to a team of experts with the skills to meet customer expectations. Outsourcing partners already have the infrastructure to handle most, if not all, customer support needs. You also gain access to best-in-class technology and processes. Many businesses have found that outsourcing their customer support teams has lowered costs while increasing their support quality. 

Influx offers simple, month-to-month pricing with all management and training included. Our team is trained in your brand voice for seamless customer support and flexible solutions that fit your needs. Deliver consistent, high-quality support with Influx!

8. Measure the right metrics 

Data can be overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be if you know what to look for and how to interpret it. Customer service metrics assist in determining if customers are satisfied and whether agents are equipped to handle their responsibilities. There are a few essential metrics that all teams should be tracking. 

  • Customer satisfaction score (CSAT), collected through surveys. 
  • Net promoter score (NPS) that measures loyalty and satisfaction. 
  • Social media metrics that show engagement and customer reviews. 
  • Churn metrics to better understand why customers stop purchasing. 
  • First-time reply (FTR) to indicate wait times. 
  • Resolution time refers to how long an agent takes to solve a problem. 

Using your definition of a great customer experience and your goals, establish which metrics are most important to you, and make sure to include these in your analysis. Then, as a team, frequently discuss and compare data to celebrate wins and reveal any areas that need improvement. 

An opportunity to enhance your customer support

We understand that many aspects of your business need your budget and attention. This is why we aim to keep our solutions economical and superior to alternatives. Your customers deserve only the best of the best. Scale with Influx for increased customer satisfaction and enhanced customer experiences. Stay flexible and get a quote now.

About the author

Photo of Mikayla Fuller

Mikayla Fuller

Mikayla is an avid copywriter. If she’s not out on an adventure, you can find her somewhere with a book in hand.