More connected and savvy than ever, customers have embraced new ways to communicate with brands. The digitalization of customer service, heightened during the current health crisis, is making businesses rethink their customer service strategy and offer customer journeys that integrate all communication channels. Here are a few strategic rules to follow in order to turn your omnichannel strategy into a driver for customer satisfaction.
According to the Customer Services Observatory 2020 from the BVA Institute, telephone and email remain the preferred customer channels for reaching out to customer service. However, the emergence of new communication channels is changing the game, as customers use on average 3.7 different channels to contact brands. Social media platforms are the channels of choice for customers under the age of 25. More than 76% of customers send messages to companies through Facebook Messenger*, and 63% of customers are happy to be served by a chatbot.** The importance of omnichannel customer service cannot be stressed enough. But the major challenge for companies today is to adapt to the preferred channels of their customers, in order to interact with them quickly and efficiently on adapted tools. The brands making a difference today are those which integrate the channels used by their customers into their strategy, to deliver the best customer experience.
** Forrester Study
60% of customers expect a consistent user experience, regardless of the time, place, device, or interaction channel.* 89% of customers claim to be extremely frustrated when they have to repeat their questions many times during a customer journey.** Therefore, the true challenge of the customer experience is offering a seamless experience which requires, first and foremost, a 360° visibility of customer interactions across all channels. This unified view allows agents to pick up conversations where they were left off and integrate each new interaction into a single conversation thread between the customer and the brand.
The competence and versatility of agents are also key challenges for omnichannel customer service: since they are often specifically trained on a single channel, 67% of agents view the growth of new interaction channels as a stress factor.
To offer successful omnichannel customer experiences, one must be able to rely on the skills and tastes of each agent, in order to deliver customers the best service quality. When using an omnichannel contact center platform allows teams to better manage issues and customer information—thereby simplifying their daily work—their productivity increases by up to 20% while customer satisfaction increases by 11%.*
* Gartner study
The success of an omnichannel relationship also relies on customer interaction follow-up. By offering customers a consistent experience from one channel to another, brands can improve customer satisfaction and loyalty. Average first contact resolution time, abandon rates and wait times, average handling time of a customer request, detection of keywords (speech & text analytics), contact transfer rates toward self-care, Customer Effort Score, NPS—there are so many KPIs which allow brands to evaluate overall customer satisfaction. As 78% of customers have already abandoned a brand after a poor customer service interaction, performance analysis on each channel is a major issue to tackle when seeking customer satisfaction and loyalty.
An omnichannel approach to customer service has been a trend for a long time. The digitalization of the customer journey has resulted in the proliferation of tools and channels which allow customers to contact and interact with brands. It’s now time for brands to integrate this new reality into their customer service strategy to offer a successful omnichannel customer experience and optimal customer satisfaction.
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