Providing good customer service to your clients is not enough to stand out in a crowded market. This rule applies to both B2C and B2B businesses as well as to those selling necessary goods, luxury products, or software.
Why? Because nowadays, buyers have higher expectations and are used to personalized and positive experiences. These positive experiences are strongly connected with one of the principles of modern customer service – omnichannel customer support.
Omnichannel customer support means being available to your customers on various communication channels and providing the same level of support on each channel. As such, having omnichannel support should enable clients to change communication channels (from phone to email, or social media and live chat) smoothly, without having to repeat their problems and questions to different support agents.
The main advantages of omnichannel customer service, apart from obviously improving the customer experience, include:
Connecting with customers via various channels of their choice may help you understand their needs, wishes, expectations, and problems better. Engaging in communication with them on multiple channels is a great way to get to know them, and showcase your willingness to make them comfortable.
You can collect many valuable insights and priceless feedback about your product or service while connecting with customers on different platforms. Usually, clients are more willing to share their opinions about your product or service on a channel that feels more natural to them. By “more natural” we mean, for example, social media messages or email as opposed to customer satisfaction surveys or pop-up NPS questions.
It may seem impossible, but offering omnichannel customer service actually makes your agents’ work easier and faster. How? Because offering omnichannel support requires a company to organize its customer service more efficiently compared to multichannel support. And thanks to that, agents can work more productively and their performance will improve over time.
Offering omnichannel customer service means considerable savings in your customer service budget. A single agent is able to solve more requests in the same amount of time – it’s directly linked with the increase of your agent’s productivity. What’s more, agents are less frustrated and their work is easier. This means that their motivation and work morale improves.
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Help desk request forms should be as short as possible. They should only include the most important fields like customer data (first and last name, email, phone number if necessary), a long text field for the customer to describe their request, and a “submit” button.
If your customer service department is more complex and consists of a few teams, such forms should also include a drop-down list where a customer can select which team they would like to contact. You can also add other drop-down lists, but remember that the form should be as short and simple as possible.
Similar to the length and structure of a help desk request form, a form must be written in easily digestible language. Use statements that are understandable and that your customers are familiar with. Steer away from using jargon or technical language, avoid using phrasal verbs or complex, compound sentences. Remember that your customers are busy, so they should be able to submit your form in minutes, or even seconds without spending time trying to interpret your corporate code.
The simple answer to this question is as fast as possible, but we know that’s easier said than done. The time required to answer a customer request should be established internally in your customer service team and, if possible, confirmed by a Service Level Agreement (SLA) signed by customer service agents. Response times may vary from industry to industry and from company to company depending on many variables.
These variables may include the number of agents in a customer service team, the quantity of help desk tickets submitted in a given period of time, the complexity of customer requests, the level of automation of your help desk operations, and the quality of your customer service software, just to name a few.
Regardless of internal conditions within your team, your customer service agents should aim to answer customer requests as soon as they are submitted, with the best interests of your customers in mind.
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