In your efforts to trim corporate fat, improve leads, and stay competitive, it’s easy to see customer service calls solely in terms of the statistics. How long is each call? How many calls lead to a conversion? What’s the bottom line?
What’s missing is the understanding that providing a pleasant calling experience for a customer in need of help directly improves your bottom line.
The overwhelmed customer
TV service providers and mobile app developers are already expressing worry over subscription and app “fatigue”. They’re beginning to realize that it doesn’t matter how amazing your product is. Eventually, consumers will decide that all their monthly subscriptions, cheap as they might be, add up to too much money for not enough value.
It’s the customer who has been lost in the morass of overwhelming choices, each of which seems only slightly different than the next. In this environment, what’s starting to make the most difference is excellent customer service.
Marketing professionals tend to focus on features, quality, timeliness, cost, and specifications. But in competitive markets, the thing that makes a company stand out in the customer’s eyes is great service.
The pleasant experience
Customers feel underserved by the companies they patronize. The worst part is, they won’t even tell you about it. They’ll just complain online and go elsewhere. They have more choices than ever, and it’s the pleasant customer experience that wins loyalty — not the price or product.
Of people surveyed, nearly 90 percent are willing to pay more to get a better and more pleasant experience. The average person is willing to pay up to a 13 percent premium if it means having a better experience.
Where the business battleground used to be developing a better product or offering the lowest prices, today the way to dramatically increase your bottom line is to offer a customer service experience so unforgettable that people love it, talk about it, and stick with you because of it.
Businesses all over the world are realizing all of this, and that means standards for customer service are rising. Improving your service to gain and keep customers and grow your business is only one side of the coin.
On the other side, failing to keep up the highest standards of customer service will actively slash away at your bottom line, as customers desert you for companies that offer a more pleasant experience. Deloitte’s 2013 survey found that 62 percent of companies see customer service as a way to set themselves apart from the rest.
More companies looking to really understand the customer experience from start to finish; from the first interest in a product through to the final buy and follow-up service. As businesses work to understand the customer, the contact center is emerging as the heart of a great customer service experience.
The contact center as key
Customers can forgive a product that fails or a service that falters. What they won’t forgive is a frustrating experience trying to get help to deal with their problem. Most customers report high levels of frustration when forced to go through different reps and re-explain their issue to each one.
That’s why companies are turning to ServiceNow call center integration, with software that allows them to connect all communication channels. With the omnichannel experience, emails, texts, calls, and chats are all brought together so an agent can see the whole history of customer interaction at a glance.
More than that, helpful chatbots are there to answer simple questions quickly, empowering customers to solve their issues themselves as often (and as quickly) as possible. When that’s not possible, the system learns enough about customer needs to make sure callers are always routed to the right agent the first time.
Customers repeatedly complain that brands need to put out a better effort to provide good service. And their dollars are poised to go straight into the pockets of the company that does.