22% of the US workforce will work from home by 2025 – these are estimates from Upwork. More and more companies are switching to a hybrid or fully-remote work format. So, it’s no surprise you won’t just need to complete your tasks from home but also maintain business relationships virtually.
Building relationships based on rapport and mutual understanding can help you retain your loyal clients and drive new ones without extra effort. However, operating remotely may make it harder to adapt to working with clients in a new format. For example, some companies or clients prefer to meet their business partners in person. Yet, some realize they’ll see some of their partners or service providers only through their laptop screen.
But is cooperating with your clients remotely necessarily a bad thing? Is there a way to make virtual working relationships more effective and full of trust? In a nutshell — yes! You can read on to discover some insightful tips we’ve picked for you. You’ll learn why it’s beneficial to work with your customers on a remote basis, what troubles you might face and how to enhance business processes while working from home.
What To Expect From Building Relationships With Clients Virtually
Suppose you and your team members are sitting at home working remotely. In that case, it may be hard at first to develop effective client relationships and ensure mutual understanding between you and your clients. However, gaining trust and making things work this way isn’t impossible.
Nowadays, with various corporate tools and apps for remote workers, you can easily maintain proper communication, manage tasks, track progress in real-time and share the results with your clients. Such a work format is a great way to refill your resources and not burn out from constant communication with your clients in person.
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How clients and businesses benefit from building working relationships remotely
Here’s a quick recap of how you can benefit from maintaining client relationships while sitting in front of your computer at home:
- Together with your client, you can come up with the most convenient means of communication and manage your workflow in the most convenient way possible;
- Sharing your ideas, new concepts and offers with your client at any time has never been easier — you don’t need to schedule in-person meetings or even virtual calls for that;
- Transparent progress tracking and updates — your client can always see what page you’re at, give comments and make adjustments at any convenient time.
Some of the obstacles you might face while working with your client base virtually
However, there are some challenging moments in building client relationships in a virtual format. Some of the obstacles and issues you could experience include:
- Lack of real-life communication — it’s not a very big deal. However, sometimes it’s necessary to show or discuss something in a real-life environment (e.g., if you’re working with landscape or interior designs);
- Difficulty working with physical products — again, being able to see the product in real life is essential for proper testing and checking for imperfections;
- Lack of trust — sometimes, a client would rather work with company representatives in-person as it gives more confidence to their credibility.
5 Tips to Build Effective Business Relationships Virtually
So, now you know the advantages and possible pitfalls of building relationships virtually. Let’s move on and see how you can improve virtual communication with your clients — whether it’s a B2B or B2C relationship.
Communicate in the way your clients prefer
Whether a weekly status meeting or asynchronous communication via collaboration tools, you should stick to what your client prefers. You can even come up with an alternative you both have never tried before. When a person feels heard, you know they’re in the most comfortable position — this helps you remove obstacles in interacting and focus on planning the workflow and resolving tasks.
Always ask for feedback
It doesn’t matter what project you’re working on — regular, consistent feedback is what helps both customers and businesses benefit from partnering. When your client is heard, you can see what’s good or wrong with your product. Such moments help in building rapport and a more relaxed working environment with no pressure or anger.
Be present and responsive
Choosing the most suitable means of communication is just a small part of the deal. Being there for your client and replying to their questions or requests in time is what’s precious. This way, you show your high level of professionalism and invest in building the mutual trust both clients and businesses benefit from.
Exceed your client’s expectations
Sure, it may be hard to apply a person-oriented approach to every customer when you’ve got hundreds and thousands of them. However, it’s not that hard if you’re not working alone.
Hire a business manager and engage your colleagues that would take over your clients and help ensure even better service and quality. Think of personalized discounts or special offers to your most loyal customers. Be flexible on the terms; you’ll see how you’re enhancing your business’s partnering resource and making your clients happier daily.
Focus on work and not time
For many reasons decision making depends on time. Change this perception and devote more attention to the working process. Focusing on your tasks brings real results and helps you stay in the zone until the project is complete.
How Can Nimbus Platform Be Useful In Building Nurturing Working Relationships?
If building business relationships virtually is something you can handle, you can use a convenient, comprehensive tool to make it smooth and flawless. Nimbus Platform can be of great help in this case. It’s a remote collaboration tool that’s great for both customer working relationships and collaboration with your colleagues.
Here’s a list of tools on Nimbus Platform that can help you work with clients virtually:
- Super pages and integrations. Combined most conveniently, you can easily structure tags, folders and files, and adapt them differently depending on the client. Simplified navigation helps your customers in understanding how to interact with the Platform. Combined with a rich set of tools and features, it lets you maximize the effectiveness of remote working relationships;
- Various collaboration options: sharing particular pages or folders with your clients or simply inviting them to your workspace. It’s a great resource for unprompted collaboration. Access permissions will keep your sensitive data safe and help you control all your shareable data for faster and more efficient cooperation;
- Company branding. You’ll collaborate with your clients under a branded tool without mentioning Nimbus or its logos. The White-Label solution helps you build reliable and more effective customer relationships;
- Nimbus Capture — a tool that can remove obstacles to visual communication. Sharing personalized videos with your clients is a great way to ensure smooth onboarding. It is an excellent way of maintaining asynchronous communication — your customers can now reply and ask questions at any convenient time.
Nimbus Platform is an excellent resource for virtual cooperation. You and your team members can quickly achieve connecting clients and enjoy all the benefits of remote collaboration. Get a free trial to see how it works — we’re sure you’ll love it!