Many call centers use customer service scripts to help representatives answer common inquiries accurately and efficiently. Call center scripting is effective as responses can be used across a range of communication channels and can also be tailored for use on outbound customer service calls. Scripts can be developed for multiple scenarios to provide staff with a standard set of guidelines and templates for each customer and every type of phone call.
A customer service script reduces errors and omissions and keeps calls on track by ensuring conversations remain concise and productive. Each call center script template offers a number of predetermined responses for more efficient calls. Every caller receives the same level of service, no matter which customer service agent they speak to at the call center. This consistency across agents is critical to the success of your call center, as McKinsey & Company found that consistency is a top driver of customer satisfaction and customer loyalty.
With that in mind, let’s look further at the benefits of using scripts, as well as some examples you can adapt for your own call center training.
3 Internal Benefits of Customer Service Scripts
Although developed to improve customer service delivery, call center scripting is advantageous from an internal company perspective as well. With the right scripts in place, organizations can provide first-rate customer service efficiently while also achieving wider company objectives.
Privacy laws require that callers answer a range of security questions to confirm their identity before discussing their account. Plus, in industries like healthcare, banking, and e-commerce, specific questions must be asked to gather the necessary information before customer service agents can offer an effective solution. Using a call center script prevents agents from forgetting or skipping questions and ensures all legally required statements and disclaimers are covered.
Scripting prompts agents to keep the conversation moving, so calls get resolved faster. This means each representative can handle a higher volume of calls in each shift, saving the business valuable time and resources.
New recruits benefit from exposure to call center scripts as part of the onboarding and training process, as it helps them prepare for likely questions, as well as provides them with guidance on how to respond. But even experienced agents can benefit from call center scripting. We all have bad days at work, and having a script to rely on means staff never need to stress about getting tongue-tied or scrambling over what to say next.
It would be remiss at this point not to mention some of the potential pitfalls of scripting a customer service call. We recommend organizations put together their scripts carefully to ensure they do not:
- Sound robotic – Experiences that are monotonous or repetitive have a negative impact on customer service scores.
- Lack emotion – Relying purely on scripts can remove personal sentiment from calls, and customers may feel agents lack empathy or do not adequately understand their problem.
- Restrict customer responses – Customers use call center options because they want to speak to a real person. Therefore, scripts should be flexible enough so that representatives are not restricted from building rapport or showing their personalities.
Types of Customer Service Scripts You Need
A frustrated customer is an unhappy customer. By mapping out a range of potential customer responses, scripts can be designed to keep phone calls productive and minimize customer frustration.
There are several different types of customer service scripts you can use to cover a variety of situations. The key is to draft scripts that allow the conversation to flow naturally rather than sounding vague or robotic. Ideally, to the customer’s ear, it shouldn’t sound like the call is scripted at all.
Every business will have different scripts. Your scripts will be based on your specific business model, product, and major customer queries. But we’ve outlined a few areas that are, common to all companies, where customer service scripts can be useful.
The initial greeting sets the tone for the entire call. Representatives that are deemed friendly sign up more customers, retain more existing customers, and upsell more products and services. Giving agents the flexibility to personalize scripts helps this process.
Here are some call center scripting examples for standard greetings:
- Hi there! Thanks for contacting us at [Business Name]. What can I help you with?
- Hello. Thanks for calling [Business Name]. How can I assist you today?
Here are some examples of more personalized greetings:
- Hi, [Customer Name]! Welcome to [Business Name]. How can I help you today?
- Good morning/afternoon. Thanks for calling [Business Name]. My name is [Representative Name]. How can I help you?
- Thanks for calling [Business Name]. You’re speaking to [Representative Name]. How are you today?
- Hi, this is [Representative Name] at [Business Name]. How can I help?
See the difference?
You can further personalize your customer service telephone scripts to account for regular callers and repeat customers. People like to feel valued, so acknowledging them as an existing or returning customer adds an element of personal service. Here are some examples of scripts you could use:
- Welcome back [Customer Name]! I’m [Representative Name] What can I do to help you today?
- Hi again, [Customer Name]. Thanks for calling [Business Name]. I’m [Customer Name]. How can I help you today?
Dealing with Issues/Angry Customers
Hopefully, the overall customer service model across the organization will minimize the number of angry exchanges that call center workers need to field. However, the effective handling of customer complaints has strong associations with brand loyalty. So it’s essential to include apology scripts and templates for handling business-specific issues so that representatives can placate angry callers as effectively as possible and move on to resolving their problems.
Finding common ground and sympathizing with the customer is vital. Here are some call center scripting examples for apologies:
- I’m really sorry to hear that. Can you tell me exactly what happened so I can find a way to help?
- I’m so sorry this happened. Let me see if I can find a way to fix things for you.
- I completely understand. I’d feel the same way. Let me get to work on putting this right.
- I’m really sorry to hear you had a bad experience. I can assure you this is not a regular occurrence. I’m going to put this right for you as quickly as possible.
- I can see how that must be frustrating. I will talk to my team and see what else we can do to make this right.
Scripts can be easily tailored to suit your products, services, and style of business operation. There will likely be some common scenarios you need to account for in your call center script sample. Inbound calls to e-commerce companies will probably deal with delivery queries and defective product issues, for example. In contrast, service-based organizations may more regularly deal with login issues or billing mistakes.
Here are some examples that cover a few different scenarios:
- I’m so sorry the [Product Name] was a different [size, color, etc.] from what you ordered. I’ll resend the correct order for you now. Then I’ll walk you through the directions for returning the incorrect order.
- I’m incredibly sorry [Customer Name]. It looks like we mistakenly sent the invoice to the wrong email. I’ll resend it now. Please let us know if you do not receive it within 24 hours.
- I’m so sorry your delivery did not arrive. That’s frustrating. Let me track your order to see what happened and get this resolved for you.
- I’m sorry you had to experience that. It looks like there’s been a mix-up. But not to worry, I can fix that right now for you.
Calls to the general customer service hotline often need to be transferred to the relevant department – billing, sales, quality assurance, etc. And sometimes, customers need to be put on hold while a call center agent gets authorization or advice from supervisors. So it’s always a good idea to cover these scenarios in your customer service phone scripts.
Here are some examples:
- I need to transfer you to the correct department to get this resolved for you. Would you mind holding while I contact them?
- You’ve come through to the customer service line, but it’s no problem. I can transfer you to [Relevant Department] right away. Please hold while I put you through directly.
- Apologies for the wait. I just need to check this with my supervisor and get the correct information to help you more quickly. Just a moment.
Note that any time you’re connecting or forwarding a customer to another person, it’s a much better experience to do a warm transfer. A warm transfer involves telling your colleague who they will be talking to and what you’ve already covered. If you can connect the customer to your colleague in a three-way call, you can do this while both are on the line.
- Hi [Customer’s Name], I have [Colleague’s Name] from [Department Name] on the phone. I’ve briefed them on the issue you’re having with [X], and they’re ready to take it from here.
It’s not always possible to resolve customer inquiries in one interaction, so sometimes customer service representatives need to schedule a customer service (CS) follow up phone call. The following call center script templates cover some positive ways to convey this requirement with minimal frustration to the customer.
- I’m very sorry. It seems there are some technical issues at our end preventing me from checking this for you right now. Can I please take down your details and call you back with an update within the hour?
- Apologies for the mistake [Customer Name]. Let me look at some alternative options for you. This may take some time. Can I schedule a follow-up call at a time that’s convenient for you?
- Thanks for the information. I need to check this with my supervisor and don’t want to keep you waiting. Can I take your details and call you right back?
A cordial goodbye is just as important as a warm greeting in wrapping up any customer service call. It’s always good to double-check the customer’s issue has been resolved thoroughly, and this is also a great time to upsell other products and services.
- Thanks for calling. Is there anything else I can help with today? No? Perfect, have a great day.
- I’m so glad I could help you today. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you need anything else.
- Before you go, I wanted to check if you’d heard about our new product [Product Name]. With what you were saying about [X] this might be a great fit for you.
- Perhaps I can help you a little more today. Many of our customers who purchased [Product Name] also really enjoyed [Product Name]. Would you like me to send you the details?
Customer Service Scripting: Best Practices
Earlier, we mentioned some of the potential downsides of using preset scripts. However, these should not be a factor if the templates you use are well constructed, use the correct language, and allow for an injection of personality and emotion. Here are our top tips for making the most out of your scripts while still keeping conversations personal.
Don’t Forget the Human Element
More than anything, customers want to know that they’re being heard and understood. But as many customer service experts will tell you, you can’t script empathy. Positive customer experiences come from building rapport and finding common ground. So if a customer becomes angry or frustrated, give representatives the flexibility to go off-script and connect on a more personal level to build trust. This typically results in quicker resolutions and more satisfied customers.
Regularly Review and Update
Having established processes that streamline customer communication is great, but improved customer satisfaction should always be the end goal. It’s important to review and update your call center scripts regularly to ensure they’re still relevant and are not limiting. Call center agents on the frontlines should be encouraged to give feedback on existing scripts to help ensure optimum outcomes.
Use Positive Language
Using the right words and phrases is vital. Here are some examples of positive words that we recommend you incorporate into your scripts and encourage representatives to include in their conversations:
Remove Negative Language
Just as the words above can help to inspire confidence and build rapport, negative words and phrases like these can quickly cause frustration for customers and should be avoided:
- I don’t know.
- That shouldn’t have happened.
- That’s not my department.
Remember, it’s not what your agents say, it’s how they say it. For example, these negative phrases can easily be replaced by more positive alternatives like:
- Let me find out for you.
- I’m sorry to hear that. I can understand your frustration.
- Let me transfer you to a specialist for more information.
Need Help with Your Customer Service Script?
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