Consumers have more information than ever before to help them make purchasing decisions. They are adapted to, and expect, regular interaction with companies. The breadth of established and new channels for customer interaction—in shops, in contact centers, over the Internet, and via mobile devices—is ever-increasing. Over the last five years, the ways consumers communicate, learn about products, and make purchasing decisions have fundamentally changed.
Technology is now the greatest driving force for companies in today’s connected and digital world. The rise and convergence of many new and emerging technologies has changed the way how customers, partners and employees communicate, engage and collaborate at work. In the age of the customer, companies don’t decide how customer-centric their organizations need to be, customers drive and decide on that. Providing great customer engagement and experience is a key differentiator for companies and will drive customer loyalty and satisfaction.
In order to become leaders in this connected and digital world, companies will need to leverage the right technologies and solutions, connect and engage with their customers, partners and employees in new ways. This will help them to become customer centric organizations.
Here are some interesting facts that Forrester’s top trends for customer service report presents with an aim to get maximum value, become closer to the customer and transform into customer centric organizations. As per the survey results it is estimated that new communication channels, proactive engagement will be explored such as video chat with screen sharing ad annotation. Also, organizations will look at ways to reduce the manual overhead of traditional knowledge management for customer service. They will start exploring interactive computing systems to collect information and communicate in natural ways. Today, the complexity of the technology ecosystem affects the quality of service that can be delivered.
Delivering pain free customer service and engagement is considered to be a key trend in the customer service ecosystem. Customers are looking for a continued, integrated, effortless and seamless experience across all touch points, interactions and devices, especially in the self-service and mobile support channels. To meet these expectations, companies need to streamline the customer engagement process to deliver the quality support, right information to answer customer questions at the right time & moment of need in the customer’s journey.
Customer support organizations need to provide differentiated experiences across all channels. They need to deliver this in a cost efficient & effective manner. To meet this they need to empower their agents and support teams with robust tools that provides them with a full 360 degree view of their customers, including sales & marketing data, guided support tools, automated scripts, discover expertise and information quickly and easily, effortless experience to access info from other systems.
They will also need to gather necessary business insights and continuously improve customer support & engagement processes to drive operational performance improvement and predict the customer’s future behavior and needs.
One of the most common use cases for Service Cloud is handling the situation when a customer sends an email to your support staff detailing that a technical problem has occurred with one of your products. In a model in which there is no established customer service platform or system for tracking issues, this message would be sent from person to person, or even department to department manually until the issue is resolved. This is not only inefficient because it takes manual effort, is quite time consuming, and is potentially prone to error. Ultimately when issues are not resolved for long periods of time, the client begins to slowly lose faith in your ability to solve their issue which potentially impacts customer retention. With service cloud the entire process can be automated and manual errors can be avoided. Service cloud additionally allows to measure, monitor and continuously improve the customer engagement and support processes.
In today’s mature and competitive markets, a company’s success in winning and retaining customers increasingly hinges on its customer service performance. Only a step change in customer service approach and top management commitment to invest in service innovations will allow companies to deliver on their vision of customer service as a strategic differentiator.