Like a well-written book, a great customer service experience is never purely accidental; it’s always well thought-out and proactively designed.
This means you need to proactively design your customer service experience that’ll lead to the best audience engagement.
In other words, you should be able to foresee the inbound customer service experiences that could be rinsed-and-repeated for every visitor.
In this blog, we will discuss how you can design a customer service experience that’ll become an asset for your business.
Before we begin to design a customer service experience, let’s look into the two underlying factors that lies at the heart of every well-designed experience.
They’re the customer service technology and the collective team’s ability to resolve customer issues.
Whether you are managing a call center or website live chat or even an on-site service, you need to take a decision on these aspects of customer service to meet the standards of 2019 and beyond…
If you are aware of the ‘TAO of physics‘, we will introduce you to the ‘TAU of customer service’ which is critical for a better customer service experience.
Customer Service – Is it about technology or people skills?
Customer Service – Is it about technology or people skills?
In the past, the customer service was mainly involved giving-out a phone number and an email address. It was well-understood that most of the most customer service issues wouldn’t get resolved within two or three interactions.
In the recent years, most companies have significantly picked-up their customer service game. Most business even think of customer service as one of their chief marketing channels.
In-order to create a high-caliber customer service operation, needs two parts
- Well-optimized technology stack
- Well-trained customer service team.
Now, let’s look into each of these aspects for a quality customer service.
Well-optimized technology stack
Today, an average customer service rep needs to handle a new issue each minute. In this situation, a technology-enabled service rep has a significantly better chance of fulfilling his obligations on a busy day.
Today, the customer service technology market offers a wide range of tools and technologies to enable better service interactions.
As a primer, let’s look into the technology stack, with each tool designed to manage separate parts of the overall customer interaction.
Source – marketingprofs.
A service technology stack consist of these different tools well-integrated to handle daily service operations. With the right API integrations, you can create an optimal workflows that’ll lead to increased productivity.
Unless, you have the right technical workflow, the service team would inevitably struggle to maintain their high quality of interactions. As a result, the issues would start to pile-up resulting in a big blow-out.
In this situation, most businesses becomes content with spending exorbitant amounts on building and maintaining the right technology stack. It allows customers to easily reach-out to service teams to get their issues resolved in minimum number of steps.
But even the most sophisticated technology stack only forms one side of the equation. In the recent times, the actual customer interactions quality have also undergone dramatic upgrade in their overall quality.
The right conversation is always the right move
If you look into the market, you could easily find different CRM Providers who will help you figure-out the technological stack for your customer service.
That’s personalized customer service interactions.
In recent years, we have seen instances where companies succeed or fall-short of leveraging customer relationships to build their business. With the growing power of customers to decide the future of a business, the right conversations can make or break a business.
When it comes to personalized 1:1 interactions, you need to have the right mindset and tactics to manage customer conversations.
The right customer service interaction should go through various stages of interaction. Here are those different stages.
- Understand the customer problem
- Amicably handles the interactions.
- Has a short communication turnaround time
- Delivering nuanced solutions to the issue
- Consistently achieves customer satisfaction
As it is, most of these interactions should be automated or utilize the right digital tools. Essentially, these comes down to zero-ing on the personalized interactions for each customer.
With the right available information, you’ll be able to improve the customer service quality by many-folds. For this, you need to obtain the right customer service information.
What you need to know to improve customer service interactions?
As mentioned, most businesses are tactful about having the right tools to manage their customer interactions. The right tools will streamline and accelerate the pace of your overall interactions.
In this situation, you should ensure that these tools are able to drive the right sort of interactions. If not, even implementing the best customer service tools will only accelerate the wrong customer interactions.
Needless to say, this could be detrimental to the success of your business.
In this situation, you need to think which could make a bigger difference within your business operations.
Is it actually improving the quality of your customer interactions or improving your technology stack?
In my experience, having prolific and productive interactions with your customer could be more beneficial for your business in the long-run.
Without further adieu, let’s look into the three kinds of customer interactions that go into managing your customer service operations.
The ‘TAU’ of a great customer Service experience
Let me introduce you to a new concept to perfect your customer service experience. It’s called the ‘TAU’ of a great customer Service experience
In order to create a great customer experience, you should incorporate all the three aspects of the of TAU. In this way, you’ll be able to replicate great experiences across the board.
Mainly, we can put-forth the TAU as these three factors.
A great customer interaction will be able to combine all these factors to create a well-optimized customer experience.
Now, let’s evaluate each of these sections in detail.
With the right tone of customer interactions, you will be able to spread a smile across the face of the customer. Once you zero-in on the right tone, it’ll convince the client to continue the interactions.
On the other hand, the wrong tone will lead to higher drop-off percentage within your customer interactions. This means a low NPS score which will lead to customer dissatisfaction and eventually customer churn.
With this in mind, a business should focus on achieving the right tone within their customer interactions. Now, let’s look what could be the right tone for your business.
As per studies, most customers prefer a casual tone of customer interactions rather than an uptight and formal tone. On the other hand, one shouldn’t have over-the-top conversations that come-off as wacky.
Now, let’s move on to the next section of managing your customer interactions.
Let me ask you a question. How often do you need to reach-out to customer service only once to get your problem resolved. In my experience, I need to reach-out at least two or three times to achieve resolution for a problem.
In 2019, businesses need to be much more competent at resolving their customer queries.
There are a few things that could be helpful for a faster issue resolution. Namely, these are anticipating customer issues, creating troubleshooting articles and training your team to resolve these issues.
Let’s talk facts. Most customers don’t like to be kept on hold or have their queries unanswered. Most customer service drop-offs happen due to customers being kept unattended for too long.
Let’s consider the opposite side of the equation.
Typically, a customer service reps works less than 38 hours a day. Whether it’s an avalanche of customer issues or trickle of inquiries, the service workload mostly remains same throughout the year.
Under the circumstances, it may not be possibly to always have the best response time for your calls and interactions. In this situation, you need to create definite timeline to respond to all your customer inquiries.
In this situation, you need to have a system of managing interactions that’s systematically puts lesser workload on your team.
Good, Bad and Broken of the customer interactions
In the previous section, we went through what could help you build a perfect experience for your customer when they interact with your business.
But, the customer service can quickly get convoluted and then even more complicated by having high volume of inbound queries coming to the queue.
In our interactions with different businesses, we have seen that maintaining a system of handling interactions could be incredibly hard.
Next, we will try to dissect the three levels of efficiency of managing customer interactions. We will also discuss where it could all go wrong for your service team.
The Good way of managing customer interactions
As it is, the modern customer service is all-about figuring-out the most effective way of resolving each inbound customer query. It also needs to happen in a ways that’s pleasant way for both customer and support agent.
Let’s think about it for a minute.
A customer who connects with your business can have a numerous number of expectations or requirements. Usually, these interactions could happen across email, chat, phone call or even some other channels.
For a single service rep, it’s practically impossible to keep track of the different queries.
Instead, there should be a more effective way of managing customer queries.
Let’s say that a customer visits the company website or connects to a call center. In order to successfully resolve customer queries, the business need to successfully streamline the entire conversation.
In these cases, businesses can omni-channel approach to resolving the actual problem.
Normally, a issue resolution goes through the following stages.
If you can capture the visitor intent or need, you can create a more effective way of resolving those problems.
By having a more streamlined way of handling customer queries, each issue could seamlessly handed-over the next department.
Ideally, each customer interaction should be a progression towards resolving the issue. For this, you need to combine the technological ability and workforce ability to streamline all the inbound queries.
Whether you’re talking about live chat or phone call interactions, this way of handling and streamlining customer interactions would lead to more satisfied customers.
The Bad way of handling customer interactions
Okay, now. We have considered the best way of managing customer interactions. Now, let’s move onto a bad way of handling customer interactions.
In this, you may be having only one of the customer service systems being fully operational; this could be technology stack or the people skills. Or each system could be only partially operational.
For example, we could have a system where the issues are getting allocated properly. But the agents aren’t trained to tackle those issues. This can also happen the polar opposite.
In these situations, your customer issues get lagged-on or may consume inordinate amounts of time to resolve each individual problem.
Broken way of managing customer interactions
If you just Google for bad customer service experiences, you might see hundreds of experiences where your customer service teams collectively fail to meet the basic standards.
Here, we won’t be going through this route. Instead, we will consider what could be a system where you are regularly failing to meet the service quality.
So, here’s the worst case scenario.
Have you ever had the experience when you thought a particular customer service interaction is just going through loops and circles.
In most cases, this happens due to the combination of both customer service and operational quirks.
In these cases, the businesses need to have effective workflows at resolving customer issues. In these cases, it would lead to customer dissatisfaction or prevalent loss of interest at managing your products.
How to design a customer service system that consistently meets the user needs
With so much information, it’s tough to figure out how to design an optimal customer service system.
As a rule of thumb, we can say that most website visitors aren’t interested in long meandering conversations about their issues. Instead, you need better conversational designs to manage your visitor interactions.
As mentioned, most online visitors are looking to acquire their requisite information in the shortest way possible. For this, you need a much more effective way understanding, connecting and managing your conversations across multiple channels and devices.
In this situation, your website interactions should be geared towards understanding and meeting your individual website visitor needs. This would help you systematically improve your visitor engagement across the board.
All in all, we can say that you need a more effective way of receiving and responding to your customer queries.
As per studies, it has been shown that live chat services beat other channels to successfully engage and manage your customer queries. If you can successfully manage your customer queries, it’ll help you improve your customer satisfaction.
On the other hand, you can also outsource your customer interactions to be handled in a professional way. WIth livprop chat services, you’ll be able to systematically improve your lead conversions across the board.
Mr. Prassanna Kumar is Industry veteran with in-depth experience in managing 24×7 chat agents and different marketing activities. He has experience at growing brands in different industry verticals. You can connect with him at his linkedin profile