Listen to Your Customers - 3 Trends You Can’t IgnoreIn honor of National Customer Service Week, we wanted to offer some key insights on three trends to keep in mind as you craft call center experiences for your customers.

After all, exceptional customer service requires constantly reinventing what you do well and what you could be doing better. 

Are you currently settling for the status quo? If so, it’s your customers who feel the pain – while you pay the price.

With so much data on what customers want from consumer experiences, there’s no better time to listen to your customer base and take action. And do it before your competitors. 

Pulled directly from consumer survey results, we noticed three specific areas of rising customer expectations:

  • Omnichannel optimization
  • Technology investment
  • Humanized engagement

Call center leaders should focus their attention on these trends in 2020 to improve customer experiences and capitalize on every opportunity. Don’t hesitate to consult with a customer experience expert, if it will help you take action sooner rather than later.

YOUR CALL CENTER NEEDS TO BE EVERYWHERE. IS IT? 

“Omnichannel” has become an industry buzzword used broadly to define an organization’s journey toward digital transformation.

While the repetitive use of the word has many call center leaders rolling their eyes, the importance of omnichannel experience has never been greater. That includes seamless and simultaneous access to your brand across web, mobile, chat, social, email, and all other emerging channels. 

That’s because customers — consciously or otherwise — will no longer allow organizations to dictate the terms of engagement. Through data insights on retention, interaction and customer satisfaction, consumer metrics clearly show a demand for faster, more intuitive experiences across consumer touchpoints. 

What does that mean for you?  It means your organization needs the right call center partner – equipped with the right technology – to provide the level of service that customers expect. 

Here are a few tips to consider: 

If you’re dissatisfied with your end-to-end call center experience, maybe it’s time to consider working with a proven industry partner.

RISE OF THE MACHINES

Customers demand service that is personalized to their changing needs, but they also want technology investment that elevates their experience.

Back in 2016, Gartner predicted that 85% of customer interactions in 2020 would be non-human. That appears to have been a bit of an aggressive timeline, but the trend itself is clear. Today’s customers are accustomed to finding their own answers, and this skillset easily translates to customer support – provided the answers are there for them to find.

You need to build clear customer paths to resolve issues and provide answers without a call center agent guiding the engagement.

Consider revamping your environment with robotic process automation (RPA), artificial intelligence (AI), or even a knowledge base (KB) to empower your entire customer support operation.

Deploy modern call center technology to:

  • Implement AI chatbot technology that learns and improves with each customer interaction.
  • Maintain a detailed knowledge base on your website to allow users to search and resolve issues on their own.
  • Configure your IVR system to walk users through troubleshooting steps as they wait for an available agent
  • Leverage a comprehensive database of customer data to help agents better understand the customer and their needs.

Connecting all the dots across your technology stack can be the biggest challenge for organizations already balancing the rigors of their day-to-day business. 

Look for resources that simplify the consumer process for seamless experiences customers prefer. There’s a host of great solutions to deploy — you just need an advocate to guide you in the right ones.

GO BEYOND YOUR PRODUCT OR SERVICE

Always remember: a great product is not enough for your customers. They expect convenience. They expect service. They expect more. 

Half of all consumers have left a brand they formerly trusted for a competitor who offered a more satisfying experience.

Your call center agents are the link between you and your customers and they need to function as a seamless extension of your brand, with the goal of retaining long-term relationships. That’s because earning new customers is 5 to 25 times more costly than keeping your existing base.

Making engagements feel familiar and frictionless has become the digital equivalent of going to a hardware store where the owner knows your name. Sure, quality is paramount — but being greeted with a smile and proactive service goes a long way.

In fact, 70% of the customer’s journey is guided by how the customer feels they are being treated, according to McKinsey. 

The only way to stay competitive is to constantly innovate.

CONCLUSION

“Legendary customer experiences are designed.”

Dwayne Vera

During customer service week, take the time to listen to what your customers are saying — they are your best resource to uncovering the changes you need to elevate your customer service. 

Whether its adding modern technology, forging new call center partnerships, or a combination of both, you can’t afford to do nothing. Great customer service doesn’t just happen, and it shouldn’t be reactive.

Not sure where to start? Contact the experts at Outsource Consultants to discuss your exact requirements and business needs  – at NO COST to you! Get started with a free call center proposal to elevate customer experience.

About the author: Outsource Consultants