As the New Normal shifts towards a remote and virtual setting, it is important that businesses adapt in order to retain customers. To ease this shift, there are several trends shaping good customer service that businesses should take into account. These trends include anticipating future customer needs, establishing an online or mobile presence for increased accessibility, and personalising marketing materials to personal experiences.
1) Intensify personalisation
Today, personalisation goes beyond sharing materials to customers in the preferred and merely just including their name in the material. Personalisation requires businesses to consistently meet specific customer needs and expectations. During these times where customers are especially taking inventory of what is necessary versus what is wanted, personalisation is no longer just a good-to-have.
Customers should always be given sufficient education and information for them to make a well-informed decision. After which, they should receive promotional offers that are specifically relevant to them. Incorporating personalised experiences into brand marketing materials reaps substantial benefits; 80% of customers are more likely to purchase products from brands that provide personalised experiences.
2) Start embracing chatbots
Chatbots today use Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to provide the ability for customer queries to be resolved real-time. This can also be coupled with a human touch to handle complex inquiries. Chatbots are able to offer quick resolutions for both agents and customers for simple questions which can speed up the efficiency of customer service.
This frees up time spent by customer service representatives on repetitive, simple questions, and allows them to provide better quality service to unique scenarios. Chatbots today offer self-service resources too so that customers can find answers to their questions themselves in a quick, mobile manner.
3) Placing emphasis on social media presence
It is not uncommon for customers to read reviews online prior to making a purchase. Today, most social media platforms offer a direct messaging tool, which allows customers to contact a business representative directly. On top of that, potential customers can easily read reviews on a business’ social media platforms from a candid perspective and learn more about the business.
A strong online presence today also means customers can purchase products and services online. Most social media platforms offer a digital storefront feature that businesses should make use of as an omni-channel sales approach. According to a McKinsey study, companies with a strong online and social media presence can increase customer experience satisfaction by 30-50%.
4) Customer service representatives to be working from home
The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed the work office setting from the office to homes. Customers still expect first class customer service even though representatives may not have the full suite of tools as the office. Especially in the New Normal, as customers are not able to visit stores physically, there will be an increase in inquiries about products and services.
In order to maintain top notch service for customers, it is important that the customer representative’s home office is fully equipped. This includes providing stable Internet connectivity and secure customer call services that make it easy to manage customer communications and inquiries, such as Omni Hotline.
5) Proactive support strategy
It is crucial that customers are supported from a proactive, rather than reactive approach. An effective proactive support strategy addresses customer questions and concerns before they arise and provides resolutions to any potential future concerns. A productive support strategy further incorporates methods in which the customers or agents are provided self-service support tools.
On the other hand, a reactive support strategy responds to customer concerns only as they are received. A reactive support strategy will overwhelm customer service reps and hinder their efficiency in providing adequate customer solutions. This leaves customers stuck waiting on hold and feeling frustrated.
In a world where businesses live or die by their customers’ loyalty, the value of a great customer support cannot be understated. In order for a business to thrive, it is important that businesses embrace digital tools fit for the New Normal times. In the best interests of the business, a hybrid support team, comprising both customer service representatives and digital self-service options should be incorporated.
Customer service representatives provide a level of personalised intimacy customers can enjoy, while chatbots serve as an excellent way to provide quick support results for simpler queries. Besides, in today’s hyper-competitive setting, personalisation will be the key for businesses to attract new customers and retain existing ones.