It goes without saying, but customers are the cornerstone for any business. This is why your company must go above and beyond with its customer service. The more satisfied your client base, the more sales you’re ultimately going to rack up.

To keep your customers happy, one big step to take is to ensure your communication methods are on point. You don’t only want it to be easy to send out messages to your customers, but also vice versa. Your customers shouldn’t have any issue getting in touch with your business.

Before the internet rose to prominence, there were three main methods of communication: telephone, snail-mail, and in-person. These days, however, there are many ways to get in touch with people.

There’s just one question: Which communication methods are the best to use? After all, certain communication strategies won’t work in certain situations, and this could damage relationships with prospective – and even long-term – customers.

Fortunately, this guide is here to supply a few answers – five. Below are some of the most effective ways to communicate with clients.

1. Phone

It might be a traditional method, but it doesn’t make it any less important. When communicating with a business, a lot of people still like to talk on the telephone with a real person. It is said that 62% of customers prefer interacting with a business via phone calls, which is a considerably larger percentage than those who opt for email (46%).

Ultimately, phoning up a business tends to be a quicker and more effective way of resolving a problem – especially a complex one. Offering this method of communication also helps your business to appear more professional instantly.

The bad news: a small business can struggle to keep a direct phone line in operation. The good news: virtual phone answering services are available. A platform like Virtual Reception, for example, takes on your phone commitments, is available at all times, and can handle multiple calls all at once. This also supplies you with more time to focus on other areas of your business.

2. Email

Email is a tried and tested method of communication. Simply put, it works – and your business needs to be utilizing it to interact with your customers.

As a marketing tool, email is one of the most effective strategies to use. If you have the benefit of a large email client list, all it takes is one well-crafted email to drive a substantial amount of leads and sales your way. It doesn’t even require a lot of work – a clear, snappy subject line could be enough to convince someone to read the rest of the message, then it’s all about having a strong call to action to get them to visit your website.

Email also makes it easy for customers to fire over any questions. All they need to do is add your business email address, put together their message, and send it over. You could have a contact form on your site to make it even easier.

3. Newsletters

There’s a reason why when you visit a website; you’ll often be presented with the opportunity to sign-up for a free newsletter subscription. Not only is it an enticing way to get people to hand over their precious email address, but you can also keep people continually in the loop about your business.

Don’t think this should be restricted to simply digital distribution, either. A printed newsletter can be even more effective in getting people to consume the content you’re supplying.

4. Social media

As they typically spend ample time on their profiles each day, social media has quickly developed into the convenient communication option of choice for customers when messaging a business.

On a platform like Twitter or Facebook, it only takes a few seconds for someone to find a company’s social media profile and send over a quick enquiry. The business will then be notified about this enquiry, and they can reply within the same amount of time.

5. Chatbot

Out of all the options on this list, the chatbot is the most recent development in the world of communication. For the uninitiated, a chatbot utilizes AI technology to replicate a realistic conversation with your customers.

The main advantage of a chatbot revolves around time. Not only is it available 24/7, but it can also provide answers within an instant. Plus the more work you put into answering all possible enquiries and follow-up questions, the more effective and ‘real’ your chatbot will be.