In recent years, the term “customer experience” has come to define a methodology for creating successful relationships with customers. The Salesforce 2019 State of Service Report proves that point.
Of the more remarkable findings, the report reveals that a whopping “eighty percent of customers say that the experience a company provides is as important as its products or services.” 57% of these customers have switched allegiance simply because another company offered a “better experience.”
To create a durable foundation for the ultimate experience, Internet Creations believes the customer service model must focus on four key areas: Responsiveness, Utilization, Personalization, and Feedback.
These four interconnected areas create a holistic method that moves beyond treating symptoms–to focus on solutions.
Responsiveness is the first thing a customer notices and is perhaps the most important part of the customer service experience. To earn a reputation as a responsive brand, you must make each customer feel like a high priority.
However, earning a reputation for responsiveness requires more than mere speed. As the Salesforce report notes: “Today, it’s not sufficient for agents to focus on closing as many cases in as little time as possible.” Instead, today’s brands must respond to each interaction “in a unique manner the customer demands.”
The best brands, then, understand how to reduce needless friction, empowering agents to offer genuine responses in real-time.
How do you reduce friction? The key is the utilization of accurate metrics, which reveal your team’s capacity while highlighting factors like speed and quality. Perhaps one agent is handling the more complicated cases, while other agents are speeding through simple cases. If you are simply measuring “time to close,” your most knowledgeable agents may appear to be your poor performers.
As the Salesforce report notes, up to 70% of today’s agents view their positions as more strategic than two years ago. Part of this shift is the use of precise performance metrics, which inspire new training protocols and ultimately increase performance.
With access to the right metrics, such as comparing time with support to time with the customer, you can easily fix faulty processes by coaching your team to utilize their time and talent appropriately.
When you reduce friction and increase productivity you create the optimal conditions for personalization. As Salesforce notes in its report: “the best products can’t satisfy customers on their own.” With the right tools, your agents can offer the type of personalization–what Salesforce calls “tailored engagement”–customers have come to expect: unique messages that offer real resolutions to specific issues.
Your agents must add value beyond customer self-service options. Today’s most successful companies understand that true engagement is people talking to people.
Every customer is unique. By emphasizing that simple truth, personalization improves the customer experience, in turn increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Feedback is the key to understanding how your utilization, responsiveness, and personalization affect your customers. Metrics only tell part of the story. Feedback reveals your customer’s actual experience communicating with your brand.
By using feedback and metrics, you can evolve your processes to meet your customer’s expanding needs.
In recent years the customer service experience has become dehumanized–for both customers and service agents. Self-service resources. Community forums. Chatbots. These new service models can be humanizing, but they only work when they lead to genuine engagement. Otherwise, customers feel alienated.
Too often support teams use tools that encourage speed at the expense of actual service. The focus on speed, in turn, motivates agents to be impersonal instead of truly personable. True empathy engenders creative-problem solving, moving beyond the catch-all, “Let me Google that for you.”
Internet Creations believes service agents must lean into the new paradigm of customer engagement–a “tailored engagement” that acknowledges the unique needs of every customer. That’s why we’ve created the Service Experience Suite–to exceed expectations by delivering the experiences of your customers and agents desire.
To learn more about the tools that make up the Service Experience Suite, click here.