Why your startup needs customer support agents

Customer support agents are like angels to your frustrated customers. At least they can be. You need to build a customer support team for your startup because you need to ensure that your customers are happy with your product. And just as important, customers should be happy with the type of assistance they get when they have issues using your product. 

Hiring customer support agents is the best path to satisfying your customers, especially when your product is too complex to explain through FAQs or written content. Customer support agents become the face of your brand – you need to make sure they can speak and write in English fluently.  This should be the most important criterion when hiring a customer support agent. 

Your customer support agent should also have the right and relevant experience (industry/product type). They need to have experience handling the support ticket volume that your business faces daily. The customer support agent that you end up hiring should demonstrate that they won’t drown trying to keep up with your customers. 

Now that you know that customer support agents are crucial to maintaining a positive brand image with your customers, let’s look at how to train a customer support agent and where you can find one for your startup. 

How to train a customer support agent

Training customer support agents is all about showing them past customer support tickets and how you handled them. You need to use the past to tell them what the future will look like. That can only happen if you expose them to past strategies on how you handled customer support tickets. 

Here are specific ideas you can use to train a customer support agent:

  • Analyze past tickets
  • Generate fake (planned) tickets for a trainee to respond to

    This can be done by looking at past questions, and more importantly, new questions that your support agents will have to deal with.
  • Prepare a presentation discussing do’s and dont’s

    This is an important step in orienting your customer support agents with your product(s), how they should respond to customers, and what they shouldn’t be doing.
  • Have the trainee shadow you while you respond to customer support tickets

    This technique is one of the best ways to train someone and get a glimpse of how they will react in the heat of the moment while delivering customer support. It’s hard to think of a better idea than having a new customer support agent shadow an experienced person.

Let your new customer support agent review every interaction (beyond customer support) that you have with a typical customer

This way, your new support agent will be fully acquainted with how a customer experiences your product or brand in full detail. They will also get to see all the context behind your customer’s questions.

Finding the right customer support agent

Finding the right customer support agent depends on three things: experience, price, and English fluency. Those are the three criteria you should use when searching and filtering through potential customer support agents. Platforms like Upwork have over 250 listed customer support freelancers for you to choose from. 

While Upwork boasts over 250 customer support freelancers, these freelancers are not vetted for English fluency nor do they charge the most affordable hourly wage. If you are looking to hire a freelance customer support agent, you are better off looking at Dollar Talent – a freelancing platform that offers vetted customer support agents for U$3/hour. They vet their support agents for English fluency and tech-savviness on top of making sure the agents are motivated to work for a whopping U$3 per hour. 

Here is a table breaking down websites that offer customer support talent: 

PlatformPrice (per hour)
UpworkU$5 to U$45
FiverrU$2.22 to U$5
Dollar TalentU$3

Fiverr turns out to be cheaper than Dollar Talent by a few cents. However, just like Upwork, Fiverr does not specialize in customer support talent like Dollar Talent does. You might be making a big gamble hiring a customer support agent on Fiverr because it’s hard to tell if a Fiverr freelancer speaks fluent English.

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