Today’s customers expect excellent service at all times, no matter which channels they use. A PwC report found that 32% of all consumers would stop doing business with a brand they love after just one negative experience. Furthermore, a 2020 Shep Hyken customer service study found that 62% of customers are willing to pay more for good customer service and convenience. In order to win customer loyalty, brands must manage these 4 common customer pain points or risk losing their customers to more savvy competitors.
Customers sometimes want to speak to an agent for complex problems. At other times, they may not have a complex issue but feel that their only option is to call for service if a brand does not propose easily accessible service on other channels. In these situations, customers may have to wait on the phone for a long time or may even be disconnected before having a chance to speak to someone.
Companies should use a contact center software solution that offers a well-designed IVR menu. Such a menu allows customers who call to quickly move through prompts and connect to the most qualified agent available. Customers will not waste time trying to connect to the right agent and may be offered a callback option so that they do not have to wait on hold. For customers who don’t necessarily need to speak to an agent, an IVR can also be used to encourage self-service. IVR menus can allow customers to check information for themselves, such as an account balance or delivery status. Digital channels may also be used to handle customer requests asynchronously, giving agents more time to handle complex phone calls while satisfying customers who don’t want to use the phone and wait on hold.
Sometimes, companies believe that using the latest technology such as chatbots is enough to please customers. However, customers may find themselves at a dead end when chatbots cannot answer all their questions. The technology is there, but the service is not. They may become frustrated, lose time, and ultimately choose another brand that offers better service.
Brands must ensure that their omnichannel strategy is truly optimized, and that includes their use of chatbots. Companies must test these tools to make sure that they are able to actually deliver quality service rather than frustrating the customer. They need to be used to handle simple requests and should be capable of connecting customers to agents if needed. Chatbots can offer useful service and free agents to handle complex tasks, but no customer wants to be caught in an endless loop with a chatbot that cannot solve a problem.
Customers may spend lots of time looking for an answer and get an inadequate solution in the end. Agents may not offer proper solutions due to lack of customer context. Customers may then find themselves transferred to another agent or switched from one channel to another. In the process, they may have to repeat information. Important information may also be lost in the transfer if the brand is not keeping track of the conversation. Customers walk away feeling defeated and likely to leave a brand.
Agents need to understand customers fully to offer them the best service. Companies can integrate a CRM into their contact center solution to have access to a customer’s complete history on all channels, including previous service interactions and purchase history. Agents can look up customer information in real time and make updates during interactions, ensuring that information never needs to be repeated and that no data is ever lost. In this manner, customers do not lose time, receive more personalized service, and are guaranteed a quality experience and a proper solution to their problem.
When customers contact a company for service, they expect a solution to their problem. They may be frustrated because they have lost time or money, so it’s likely they will need an apology from the brand and expect compassion for their negative experience. Unfortunately, customers are sometimes confronted by agents who do not deliver on an emotional level, leaving the customer even more upset and more likely to abandon the brand.
Companies must invest heavily in training their agents to show empathy. Agents are the face of the brand, so any inconvenience for the customer must be acknowledged with a sincere apology on behalf of the brand. Agents must be trained to listen attentively, give customers a chance to explain a problem, ask questions, discuss possible solutions with the customer, and ultimately make sure the customer is satisfied with the final solution. Throughout the interaction, agents must show compassion and respect for the customer’s situation by offering reassurance and a positive attitude. Agents must be careful not to become overwhelmed by negative customer emotions and remain professional. Taking a close look at post-interaction surveys and KPIs such as CSAT and CES can reveal how customers feel about their interactions and what service improvements can be made.
Brands must make every effort to manage customer pain points proactively and design customer-centric experiences. By eliminating pain points from the start, customer satisfaction and loyalty can be won.
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