So here’s the deal: simply being able to speak to a customer care representative does not define superior customer service in the eyes of today’s consumer. Recent research has even found that a little over half (55%) said they would prefer to quickly solve their issue using an automated system rather than wait to speak to someone on the phone. So what’s the key to wowing customers with your contact center? Here are 5 things customers are clamoring for.
Your contact center doesn’t do any good if customers can’t, you know, contact them. Display a number, an email address, a contact form, social media buttons on your Contact Us page so that customers have multiple options. The more channels displayed, the better.
2. Live Chat
Live chat support is becoming standard for many ecommerce companies, and many customers expect it. But why use it? It’s ideal to handle small immediate concerns that don’t need heavy firefighting (i.e. one-off questions that are probably already answered on your site), as well as handy during the shopping experience to provide recommendations and upsells.
There is no excuse for not having a knowledge base/FAQ section on your site. It doesn’t matter how quick your response time is or how many agents you have – customers should not have to contact customer care to find out whether you accept credit cards or ship internationally.
Something has gone wrong and a customer is dissatisfied, which is why they’ve called or emailed in the first place. Acknowledge their anger/disappointment, thank them for sharing their feedback, and most importantly – apologize! Even when it’s not your company’s fault! Having a script is often the practice, but it also pays to have contact center agents who can keep the conversation a little less businesslike and tap into their emotional skills. This helps build trust and rapport, and works with both angry and passive customers.
5. Taking Ownership
How often have you called an 800 number, only to be placed on hold and ping-ponged from one agent to the next, each one claiming that the next transfer will take you to the right department? Infuriating, right? This will not only anger your customers, but it also damages the reputation of your operations because it gives the impression that nobody wants to help (or knows what they’re talking about). Prevent passing the buck by empowering agents to solve simple problems without escalation. Whether it’s offering a standard ‘angry customer discount’ or placing a re-order to them at no charge, there are plenty of on-the-fly options you can use.
Think these are great tips? Check back next week, when we’ll bring you 5 more things that customers want from your contact center.