In a recent survey done by Eptica, it was found that more than 88 percent of consumers who responded to the survey said that they now contact businesses more often, with greater than 16 percent getting in touch with their preferred companies over twice as much.
This is happening as consumers nowadays are demanding more detailed and better answers from brands, or they say that they will move to the competition and 91 percent in the said survey said that they can get annoyed and can be less loyal if a brand fails to answer questions to their satisfaction, which can eventually hampers the brand’s business growth.
Now, this huge explosion in the volume of incoming calls for the customers in the recent times across a growing number of channels naturally eats up a lot of company resources and even puts pressure on the customer support teams- which is especially true in this Pandemic times.
Therefore here are five suggestions to help reduce the number of incoming contacts and ensure that your customer support executives are not overwhelmed during these turbulent social-distancing COVID-19 times:
Deflect with self-service
According to the said survey done by Eptica, it has also been found that 83 percent of the consumers across the globe are happy to use self-service and among them, 64 percent of the consumers are fine with using Chatbots to ask questions for resolving their issues.
Now self-service is a tactic that benefits everyone since over here consumers can ask questions in their own words and even receive clear and fast answers without even feeling the urge to pick up the phone, send an email or use social media to establish contact with the company.
Moreover, brand self-service options make businesses gain efficiency while freeing up support agents to handle more critical issues that require human interventions.
Empower your agents
Provide your agents the right tools like an easy to use CRM to do their job quickly and effectively so that they feel happier being empowered and therefore become more engaged with the customers.
Here are some of the ways you can help your business to achieve this:
• Once you use a business growth technology like Salesforce or even any other Salesforce Alternative CRM tool that provides access to a centralized knowledge base that is perennially updated with the latest information, your support agents can quickly and confidently find most of the answers they require to respond to their customers, irrespective of whether they are answering over digital channels or phone.
• Use automation in easy to use CRM solutions to analyze incoming problems and issues and automatically route them to the agents who have the best knowledge and expertise to solve them, which as a result will help in speeding up your responses.
• There are several CRM tools that come with integrated AI (Artificial Intelligence) nowadays which can be deployed to analyze the tome of the customer’s digital communications in order to prioritize the most pressing needs and better understand the customers. Using this technology helps support agents to get engaged more effectively with the customers who send them messages flagging disappointment or anger in their interactions.
This is necessary since there are several customer service interactions (especially about critical issues) that call for agents to be empathetic with the customers while providing the consumers with reassurance and support, and use human skills for developing more in-depth conversations that help in building trust on behalf of your company.
Use feedback to drive change
Another remarkable way to lower incoming query values without neglecting satisfaction is to identify the problems and issues right within the customer journey that trigger recurring questions of the part of the consumers since if you can improve or adapt those areas, it can be acknowledged as a smart way to decrease the number of questions at the source.
For example, if the consumers of your brand are consistently asking questions at check out about your businesses’ delivery time, then it can be assumed that there is an obvious need to make this information more visible and up-front.
Now, one of the best ways to identify this problem triggering points is to analyze your customer’s feedbacks and interactions stored inside your easy to use CRM software tool and thereafter use the VOC (Voice of the Customer) insight to drive real change.
Avoid them having to ask questions at all
Just imagine how you would feel like a support agent if you could predict the typical issues and problems that consumers will ask at various points in their customer journey?
The good news is that now this is also possible.
Nowadays using an easy to use CRM tool with analytical capabilities you can develop an in-depth understanding of the customer’s journey and find out the much-needed information your customers will need at each stage and thereafter automatically provide contextual information, like on-screen help or through Chatbots. This is a process by which you can make your self-service process even more convenient as consumers find relevant answers even before they ask it over the phone or online.
Removing the duplicates
In modern times more so with raging these Pandemic consumers are increasingly becoming impatient.
Hence if a brand does not provide a quick reply to their questions they might email once more or try and ask the same question over Facebook or Twitter, and now even on WhatApp groups.
Now, what happens for this is that customer service teams often get flooded with a deluge of duplicate answers, which take up times and resources.
Therefore to avoid this scenario, respond to the first message of the customer and let them know a genuine timeframe by which they can find a solution or reply.
It has been found by a study done by a CRM for SMB organizations that even less than 46 percent of businesses do not send an email acknowledgment to confirm that they have received the message, and among those who do only 28 percent provides an expected time of reply.
Nevertheless, not doing these basic things forces customers to initiate contact once again which as a result increases the workload.
It has been also found in the said study that while more than 23 percent of the consumers said that they would resume contact on the same channel for finding a resolution to their issue, greater than 30 percent said that they will switch to some of the more expensive channels like a phone.
Therefore it is true that as the consumers have a huge range of digital channels today that they can use to contact brands, there it is no surprise the number of the contact is on arise, especially during this Pandemic, when consumers want more detailed answers than before, and the key of managing that lies in using innovative business growth technology along with smart planning and employing well-trained teams to make the most of the resources at their disposal, and help deliver the right customer experience time after time.