On the one hand 2020 limited some actions, but on the other hand it accelerated many trends. Of course, the reason for 2020 being exceptional was nothing and nothing less than the pandemic.
Business has moved from offline to online. Customers want to sort out all matters from home and still enjoy the highest level of service. They also want their issues to be solved quickly, without the need for multiple points of contact. They expect to find answers to their questions and often use ready-made articles or FAQs found on company websites.
As many as 86% of consumers are willing to pay more for a product if they can count on good customer service. As you can see, this is becoming increasingly more important due to a growing interest in online shopping and business, especially in the coming year. Providing a good customer experience should be the basis of all plans for 2021, but… where to start? We’ll cover it below with a few good practices that you may want to use.
It’s all about communication
Customers do not like to be treated like the next number in a line. Behind each of them there is a person and a specific problem to be solved. Consultants must treat each case individually, and this is becoming increasingly important in the customer service process. It is worth betting on this approach and ensuring the satisfaction of every person contacting your Customer Service Center.
It is also important to control customer satisfaction. Negative evaluations can help you spot problems quickly and solve them as soon as possible. It will therefore be necessary in 2021 to use tools that enable service assessment. Listening to feedback from customers not only provides us with a lot of interesting information, but also increases trust in a company over time.
Consultants also need to feel confident when talking to clients. Invest in their development, training, and gaining of knowledge about your products. Confidence and quality of responses are important factors when assessing customer service, and the requirements for them will surely increase this year.
There’s no way back from technology
Customer service departments are already burdened with a large number of phone calls and other forms of contact. In order to improve their operation and relieve your agents from answering simple, repetitive questions, we can implement chatbots to provide customers with immediate answers to their questions at any time. Chatbots are not limited by the number of queries or the working hours, and they act as assistants to our consultants who take over the handling of simple problems and questions.
Businesses may point out problems of chatbot configuration or the perception of this function by customers. However, this will change over time. 2021 will be a good year for experimenting with the implementation of new technologies. Both customers and employees will be increasingly willing to use them for more effective and faster communication.
However, it may sound, bots are also professionals. They don’t have emotions and so can easily cope with an upset client. Additionally, they do not make spelling mistakes or typos like human agents might.
If your customers come from different countries, you can also easily program chatbots to talk in several languages. You no longer have to look for employees who speak foreign languages and require proficient foreign customer service!
Of course, it doesn’t mean that customer service agents are no longer necessary. Quite the opposite – they just need some tools and solutions to help manage their to-do lists.
Take CloudTalk as an example: it’s a call center management solution that can support both inbound and outbound calls, and complement them with multiple features for better and more efficient work.
Be where you audience is: on social media
Social media is another channel of communication that is becoming increasingly popular for general use and for customer service.
Clients want to get things done quickly and efficiently, and they use applications such as Messenger for communication on a daily basis. The possibility of contacting a given company via social media significantly speeds up and facilitates the entire process. A customer can write a message quickly and easily, add an attachment, and receive an answer that will not get lost among a crowded email inbox.
If your clients contact you on social media, they want to get their answers on there too. Redirecting them to another platform will be counterproductive and may only cause customer irritation and a waste of time for both parties.
So, in 2021, it is worth focusing on the development of this communication channel. Social media may help to build a friendly brand image and facilitate contact with clients. It might even turn out to be more effective and natural than emails or phone calls, as well as more convenient for your clients.
Omnichannel is a standard, not a luxury
2021 will definitely be based on meeting ever-changing yet always growing requirements of customers. Your activities must be aimed at facilitating contact in every possible way, which is where omnichannel comes to life.
When browsing a website, clients may use a chat feature or contact form. Contact details should be in a visible place so that all users can easily find them in order to make contact by phone or e-mail. Another important channel is the aforementioned social media.
Omnichannel is very often the best answer to the problems of a customer service department. By combining all channels in one place, consultants will always have full information about a client. When receiving a call, the entire contact history of that person will appear and the employee will know the details of previous conversations, e-mails, or contact via social media. The consultant will feel more confident and the client will receive answers to their questions faster. In this way, you can all but ensure their satisfaction with the service. Top it off with chatbots, and you’ll be a step closer to providing an excellent omnichannel customer experience.
Self-service can serve you right
Did you know that 67% of consumers prefer to find solutions to problems on their own rather than ask for help?
Nowadays customers have easier access to information about services and can check frequently asked questions, which they will do with pleasure as long as the company provides self-service options.
Well-prepared articles that address any issues that may occur are a great solution. Of course, preparing quality articles is not easy. It requires the time and commitment of employees, but it does produce great results. As many as 91% of users prefer to use ready-made sources of knowledge that are well-suited to their needs. The same piece of research indicates that only 40% of users need to contact Customer Service after getting self-service assistance.
In 2021, you may want to create or improve your FAQs, articles for onboarding, heat maps, and live chat templates to provide better self-service for your clients.
Wrap it up
2021 will be directed towards clients and their requirements by adjusting actions to suit their needs. It is worth focusing on friendly communication and using new technologies that will relieve the burden on customer service agents.
Using social media as another communication channel will also be an important starting point to meet customers’ expectations. It is worth enabling them to communicate in a way that can be quick and effective for both parties.
In 2021, clients will expect to have multiple methods of communication at their disposal. Phone, email, chat, contact forms, chatbots, and social media, etc. should. all be easily accessible. And all of these channels should be combined into one panel to better organize the work of your customer service department.
Customers prefer to find solutions to problems on their own, so your task is to provide them with high-quality materials and articles that allow them to do so. Investing in self-service may therefore be extremely profitable in the long run.
Don’t forget about tackling customer service continuously. For this, you also need to be well prepared for remote work! Customer service tools make it possible, so you may want to check out solutions such as CloudTalk.
Kinga Edwards – CEO of Brainy Bees, in love with content marketing and effective PR. She believes that insights are everywhere!