Are you having trouble communicating with customers online? It’s more important than you’d think. In fact, 80% of customers consider the experience a company offers as important as its products or services.
People head online to ask questions, voice their concerns, and find expert help. Improving online engagement can help show customers you’re reliable and trustworthy.
You need an excellent online communication strategy for your business. If your online communication skills aren’t up to snuff, on the other hand, you might risk losing your customers.
Connect, communicate, and convert online visitors into paying customers with these tips!
1. Consider Online Etiquette
People make assumptions about your character based on how you speak and act. Remaining courteous and professional in person can help you establish a strong first impression. How you speak and act also builds a customer’s initial impression regarding your brand.
In order to make a strong first impression, you need to follow specific rules and customs. Behaving with propriety, decorum, and professionalism will show consumers you are professional.
Otherwise, you might risk coming across as arrogant, rude, or even weird.
A negative first impression can leave a bad taste in someone’s mouth for a long time. It can even damage potential relationships with clients before they even get the chance to know you.
Proper online communication requires businesses to follow certain rules of etiquette, including:
- Respecting the customer’s privacy
- Verifying facts
- Checking messages regularly to reply promptly
- Avoiding name-calling or voicing offensive opinions
If you wouldn’t say something to a valued client, it has no place online. Remember, you’re speaking with real people, even if it’s over the internet.
2. Keep it Clear & Concise
Avoid confusing your audience with heavy jargon or complicated text. Instead, use clear and concise language. How you write is important as you work to improve online communication.
Here are a few tips to consider when writing social media marketing content:
- To improve online engagement, try writing in a casual, conversational type
- When writing for a professional audience (such as LinkedIn followers), use sophisticated vocabulary
- Avoid industry-relevant technical jargon, which could alienate your readers
- Consider how your target audience speaks when writing content
- Write out acronyms your readers aren’t familiar with the first time you reference them
- Break up the text using bullet points, subheadings, lists, and pull quotes
These writing tips can help you improve readability. When your content is easier to read, it’s also easier to encourage engagement.
If people are confused, on the other hand, they’ll likely scroll past your content.
Breaking up your text can also make your content easier to digest. Otherwise, readers might get tired halfway through a post.
You can also improve your online communication by proofreading. Don’t press “Post” without reading over what you’ve written. Instead, check for:
- Grammar errors
- Improper punctuation
- Poor sentence structure
- Spelling errors/typos
- Incorrect tenses
Reading over your content before pressing “Post” can save you from making embarrassing mistakes.
3. Maintain the Right Tone
Online communication lacks the non-verbal cues that can relay sarcasm or humor. Many of us are accustomed to checking someone’s facial expressions, gestures, or tone to understand their intended meaning. Online, using the right tone of voice can make all the difference.
Otherwise, people might misunderstand you.
Create a set of guidelines for the voice and tone you use online. For example, you might want to consider certain words to convey humor. At the same time, avoid sarcasm or irony, which people might misinterpret.
You’ll also want to consider different communication styles based on the content. Establishing the right tone can help you avoid miscommunication issues in the future.
4. Provide Thorough Answers
Avoid sounding vague. Instead, prepare yourself to provide the details your readers need to grasp a full understanding.
What questions do your customers ask often? Make a list and start preparing your answers. Don’t feel afraid to ask customers for clarification if you don’t understand their question.
That way, you can avoid providing an inaccurate answer.
5. Build a Persona
Building an online persona can help improve engagement. For example, you can create a personality that’s friendly and personable. Customers will then feel like they can trust you for answers to their questions.
Consider your long-term goals when creating this persona.
You can then incorporate this persona throughout your website and various social media channels.
6. Avoid Multitasking
Multitasking during a conversation can cause you to misunderstand the question. You might also fail to provide the proper answer.
Instead, remain in the moment. Don’t tune in and out while balancing other tasks. Instead, give customers your full attention.
Streamline your work and avoid multitasking by using document automation for more effective workflow.
7. Don’t Pretend to Know the Answer
If you don’t know the answer, don’t provide one! Instead, admit you don’t have an answer on hand. Then, reassure the customer that you’ll look into it, so you can provide them with an accurate response.
Trying to satisfy customers with an untrue answer can impact their trust in your brand.
Instead, remain honest and forthcoming.
8. Listen Up
61% of small businesses invest in social media marketing. Social media is a great way to connect with customers online. By maintaining a strong social media presence, you can remain informed about customer concerns.
In order to make the most of these conversations, listen. Pay attention and try to understand the customer’s point of view.
Actively listening can help you help them!
9. Remain Patient
One of the most important tactics for proper online communication is patience. Even if you’re having a long day, remain polite and patient with your customers.
Otherwise, customers will become aggravated, too. Then, they’ll look for help elsewhere.
10. Find Positivity
Instead of saying, “No, I can’t,” try to use positive language. Respond with “I’ll try,” or “Let me see what I can do.”
Positive responses will reassure customers and let them know you’re at least trying to help.
Talk It Out: 10 Tips for Improving Online Communication
Improving online communication can strengthen your brand. Otherwise, you’ll risk scaring off customers online and in-person.
Looking for new ways to improve your social media engagement? Check the Tools & Tips section of the blog today.