Chat, SMS, social media…there are so many channels these days for customer service. But is it really necessary for your brand to use them all? In short, absolutely. Not only do customers have their preferred channels, but they are also expecting you to deliver the best service possible on these channels at all times. According to a survey by Aspect Software, companies that adopt an omnichannel strategy achieve 91% greater year-over-year customer retention rates compared to those that do not. Here are five specific reasons why your customers want you to give them great omnichannel experiences.
Offering service on many channels can sometimes take up too much of your customers’ time. For this reason, the key is to optimize each channel and find ways to make them work together. For example, if a customer makes an initial contact on social media but needs to explain his case in detail, an agent might suggest speaking on the phone. To optimize the experience, the agent must respond promptly to the social message and call the customer promptly as well, offering his name and extension number in case the call is disconnected. By offering timely service on both channels and giving the customer detailed contact information, the customer is given a rapid and personalized response that fits his needs.
It’s important to remember that not all customers are comfortable with all channels. That’s why it’s essential to give them choices. For example, one customer might only prefer social media, while another may consider messaging the best way to receive personalized service. In addition, mobile customers may only prefer channels that are easy to use on the go. While channel optimization is crucial to making customers feel at ease on their preferred channels, their mobile counterparts must also be given the same attention.
If your brand is unable to provide 24/7 service on every channel, then an omnichannel strategy is a must. On channels that cannot offer service all the time, be sure to indicate the hours of operation and how the customer may contact you otherwise. Customers should always know how best to contact you, even if your brand cannot be available at all times.
When your brand determines a customer’s most comfortable channel, remember that it’s often the best one for all customer engagement. As a general rule, it’s important to follow up with service cases on the initial channel of contact. However, your brand can go a step further and send periodic surveys and marketing offers on these channels as well. Customers are more likely to show interest and will appreciate that your company took the time to identify their preferences.
Customers nowadays like to connect their digital shopping experiences with their in-store ones. For example, one customer may like to order a product and pick it up in-store, whereas another might visit a store to learn more about products only available online. According to a Forrester study, 50% of shoppers expect to be able to purchase online and pick up in-store. In addition, 45% of shoppers expect sales associates to be knowledgeable about online-only products. It’s therefore imperative to link the digital and in-store experiences seamlessly. In our modern world, customers have many choices and may feel overwhelmed. By offering optimized omnichannel experiences at all times, your brand can help customers save time effortlessly and make the purchases they truly want.
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