Customer Experience is arguably one of the hottest buzz words of the year, with benefits like better customer retention, lower operating costs, increased sales, and faster growth. Of course creating (and keeping) happy customers is a goal of any B2B support organization, but it can be a bit daunting.
Rest assured, despite the hype, the fancy words, and the complicated definitions found across the world wide web, the truth is it can be one of the easiest metrics to impact without breaking the bank. Software Advice recently published an article with 5 essential tools for improving the customer experience and we wanted to share it with you.
As defined by Software Advice, "Customer experience is the overall quality of all the interactions a consumer has with a company and its products and services." Simple, but hugely important.
While customer experience is a result of all departments - from sales and marketing to product development and even finance, it's certainly a key component of customer support. So it stands to reason that improving the customer service experience begins with using the right customer service software.
Here are the 5 tools they recommend:
1. Mobile Customer Support
As Software Advice found in a report on mobile CX, 63 percent of consumers use mobile devices a few times a month or more to search online for customer and product support.
Customer Benefit: Ease of access, better mobile customer experience.
Company Benefit: Reduce demand for costly agent support.
Easily one of the fastest and simplest ways for customers to contact you, live chat is an essential component of any customer service offering.
Customer Benefit: Easy to use, fast solutions to questions, talk to a live agent without getting stuck in a phone queue.
Company Benefit: Provide contextual information to the agent, less costly than phone support, improve customer service efficiency (agents can operate multiple chats simultaneously).
We've spoken before about customer preference for self-service. There are several important pieces to this however - it must be complete, clear, and address the question accurately. Make sure you monitor effectiveness with metrics (track which topics agents and customers reference most often) and use a collaborative system so agents can work together to keep support resources up to date. Your knowledge base will be a key component of this success.
Customer Benefit: Simple and fast, find the information when they want.
Company Benefit: Reduced demand for support agents (so they can focus on higher level issues), improved first-contact resolution, and lower cost.
Social Media Support
if you're going to offer social customer support, do it right. Embrace it, own it, and monitor it relentlessly! Using a software that can automatically convert complaints into tickets, or allow customers to submit a ticket through the company page (like on Facebook) will make this job a lot more efficient.
Customer Benefit: Easy to use, fast answers (when done right).
Company Benefit: Less manual work, combine efforts with marketing.
Omnichannel Customer Support
By definition, omnichannel customer support was born to improve the customer experience - unlike multichannel, which simply means "many channels" and often results in a disjointed customer experience, omnichannel means "many consistent channels" so the customer can move from channel to channel as needed and agents can pick up the conversation on any channel and have full visibility into the customer history. For this to work a centralized customer support system is essential.
Customer Benefit: Seamless experience, answers when and where they need them, not having to repeat information over and over every time they contact support.
Company Benefit: Better understanding of your customers, full visibility into all interactions, valuable insights so marketing and R&D can make improvements.
And of course, our favorite benefit of customer experience which is common to them all - Happier Customers!