How to use Instagram to provide customer service

Selling your products and services on Instagram and not offering customer service at the same time is the best way to tell potential customers that you only care about their money. It can only mean one thing — asking your customers to switch their loyalty to your competitors.

A customer that buys your products and services on Instagram expects you to answer their questions and assist them to resolve any issue they may face.

Many businesses understand this, but how to go about it is a headache.

Are you one of them? Then you have to stick around because I will show you how to use Instagram to provide customer service.

What’s customer service on Instagram?

It’s the interaction between a customer that makes a purchase from a business on Instagram and the customer representative of such a business. The aim is to provide a superb customer experience and satisfaction which leads to a customer returning to make more purchases.

Think of it as being available to care for and support someone you love when they need you most.

What are the benefits of customer service on Instagram?

Earning the trust and loyalty of a customer on Instagram is crucial to making repeated sales, and providing customer services on Instagram is a way to achieve that. The more touch points your business has with customers on Instagram, the more you win their hearts to the extent they can forget you have competitors.

Customers are the goose that lay the golden egg, and you need to offer high-quality customer service to keep the eggs coming.

And the best business advertiser you have is a customer that’s satisfied with your customer support.

They will spread the good news about your business on Instagram by tagging you on posts related to what you offer. Some will share your promotional posts, and engage in other activities that will boost the visibility of your business on Instagram.

Let’s dive into 6 ways to use Instagram for customer service.

1. Let your contact us info be visible in your Instagram bio

When customers that patronized you on Instagram have issues with your products, they run to your Instagram bio to seek ways to reach out to you.

The Contact Us Info which you make available on your bio will assure them you are with them and ready to support them anytime.

The absence of it is a disappointment and can make them regret patronizing you in the first place.

Even a potential customer who had a bad customer experience with a brand will think you’re one of them if your bio doesn’t display the methods through which you offer customer service.

Thankfully, an Instagram business account which I expect you to have allows you to add action buttons such as contact us and message. Activate it on your account, just like @Breakthrufairview did in the screenshot below:

To do the same, follow these steps:

  • Tap edit on your IG business account
  • Navigate to Public Business Information and tap Contact Options
  • Click on Add Action Button
  • Select the action button you want

Your customers can send DMs using the message action button, and you can reply to them instantly.

Since it’s impossible to be available to respond to the DMs of your customers 24/7, you can use services like SendPulse to create a chatbot for Instagram and automate your conversations.

This is helpful to eCommerce merchants.

For example, merchants that connect their Etsy shop to Instagram can set up a chatbot and program it to answer common questions a customer can ask about their products.

2. Turn on the notification

It’s common on Instagram for customers to mention brands they patronize in their posts, send DMs, and tag them. You will miss out on this if you disabled your notification. Key conversations about your products and services will pass you by.

It can be a bad reputation a customer is trying to create because of the frustration they face with your products. Not jumping in at the appropriate time will hurt your brand identity and reputation on IG.

It can also be a qualified lead waiting for you to warm it up to convert to a sale.

From any angle you view it, enabling your notification is a plus to your customer service strategy, especially now customers want swift responses.

To turn your notification on IG, take the following steps:

  • Click on your profile
  • Select Settings
  • Under settings, tap Notifications (Push or Email)
  • Browse through to enable notifications you want to receive

3. Include FAQ solutions in your Instagram highlight album

Keep in mind that not all your customers will want to contact you via chat or DM to resolve issues. It can take time to get a response via DM, especially if it isn’t automated.

Some will prefer a FAQ solution where you answer all common questions that relate to your business.

Instagram has a highlight album where your stories can be saved permanently on your profile. Leverage it to feature these FAQs and empower your customers to resolve issues themselves without sliding into your DM.

Interestingly, IG story as a feature is responsive even if a user is using something obscure as Roku internet browser to view it.

And it’s positioned under your profile where customers can easily see it.

Here is how @Whatkelseysreading features FAQs in its IG Stories album:

To add Instagram stories created as FAQs to highlights, take the following steps:

  • Go to your account
  • Tap Story Highlights, which you can see under your username and bio
  • Click the plus icon to select the story you want to add as a highlight and tap Next
  • Edit the cover photo of your story to add the image of your choice and click Done
  • Add a story name for your highlight; in this case, should be FAQs
  • Click Done and your highlight will appear under your profile for your customers to see

4. Move the sensitive conversation to a private channel

Offering customer service via a private channel is the best way to prevent a negative reputation and also protect the sensitive details of a customer on Instagram.

It’s common for customers to pour out their frustration in the comments of your post. This often happens when the product and service they bought from you fell short of their expectations.

The screenshot below shows a dissatisfied customer who is asking others not to buy a sofa from Madedotcom:

In such an event, engaging the customer and moving the conversation to a private channel with help.

Other negative things they may say won’t be public, and their personal data like email addresses and payment details in case of a purchase made from your store is protected.

5. Be transparent with your support

The worst thing you can do as a business is to pull the wool over a customer’s eye just to force them to buy your product. That’s selling with deceit, and it generates a negative review in the long run. A study has it that 73% of customers are willing to buy more from brands that are transparent with their products.

Be honest with a customer about the solutions your products and services offer during inquiries on IG.

If it doesn’t meet their requirements, no problem!

It’s better for them to go for an alternative product than pay for something that won’t work for them.

6. Have a personalized tone for each support

Customer support is all about empathy — putting yourself in the shoes of a customer and knowing where it pinches.

That’s why you need a personalized tone for each customer you support.

For instance, a customer who got a damaged product due to poor handling during shipping won’t be happy. Your tone of conversation should show sympathy and readiness to replace the damaged product since it isn’t their own making.

Also, a customer who likes your product and is scared of buying due to a previous bad experience with your competitor needs encouragement and convincing words that you stand for the best.

Using IG messaging features like emojis and hashtags can help make your support to a customer meaningful, casual, and friendly.

Final thoughts

Customers are the backbone of your business on Instagram, and you need to offer the best support to keep them coming back to buy more.

A happy customer is the best advertiser you have.

They will post about your products and services, leave positive comments, and even recommend you to their friends. I’ve shown you different ways to go about using Instagram to give the best customer experience.

Add a contact us or message button in your bio, enable notifications, create FAQs and add it to your IG stories highlights.

In addition, move sensitive conversations to private channels, be transparent with your support and have a personalized tone for each support you provide.

All these if implemented will amount to great customer support which customers yearn for. And it can only mean one thing — more loyal customers, and more sales.

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