The customer service industry is growing increasingly competitive.
Today’s customers can have a lot of influence, they also possess more knowledge and can hold companies to higher standards.
Customer service is key to growing your business. That means offering consistent omnichannel support.
Recent research shows that companies that provide consistently good service can retain 89% of their customers, whereas companies that do not always provide good service retain only 33% of their customers.
What is an omnichannel customer experience?
An omnichannel customer experience is creating a cohesive buyer journey across the channels your customer uses.
Omnichannel customer experience integrates chat, social media, email, and instant messengers to provide a cohesive brand experience.
Customers can then switch between multiple channels and still experience the same quality of service.
Omnichannel experience is about ensuring a single, consistent experience, which will translate to higher conversion rates and greater customer satisfaction.
How to improve omnichannel customer experience?
We listed 10 ways you can improve Omnichannel Customer Experience for better results.
1. Be easily accessible to customers
Today, customers have a low tolerance for challenges, and they want instant resolutions anywhere and anytime they need it. This is particularly true when it comes to social media — a customer will tweet about an issue, and a brand can quickly respond.
Although social media is a great start to becoming more accessible and convenient, integrating instant messengers like WhatsApp, Viber, WeChat and more are invaluable.
WhatsApp is one of the most used channels by people across the world. It offers businesses a plethora of convenient features that make conversational experiences more effective and memorable.
Omnichannel customer experience isn’t just about providing service on all platforms; it is about delivering consistently great experiences on every channel.
2. Offer self-service options to customers
Customers want to solve customer service issues themselves, and they expect businesses to make it easy. An excellent way to improve the speed and quality of your customer service is to give customers more self-service options. This can come by expanding your FAQ section to create a knowledge base.
The ability to search for answers and fix problems on their own time without contacting customer support makes it convenient. You can make your FAQs easy to understand and organized in a way that makes them easy to search for information.
A Forrester study of Oracle and Forrester research found that businesses who use self-service support over the web can reduce customer service costs by $11 per call.
3. Gather customer behavior data
Providing effective customer service is about understanding your customers’ needs and behavior. Track every customer’s journey to understand which phases they’re in so that you can tailor your messaging and service according to their needs.
You can analyze your customers’ needs through the customer service data you collect, input from your customer service team, and customer feedback.
Analyzing customer needs must start from somewhere. A process that incorporates the needs of customers throughout its lifecycle is a process that has been designed with customer experience in mind.
4. Provide better mobile-based services
Everyone uses their mobiles for everything.
Mobile phones are among the most popular easy-access media. If you run a business in 2021 and can’t offer uncompromised support on mobile, you will face frustrated and annoyed customers.
Optimize your mobile website/app by explicitly displaying your support button on every page. Make your FAQs, documentation, and self-service videos or images mobile-friendly.
Customers want to reach you quickly, so enable convenient and accessible live-chat designed for mobiles. If they need help, they want to get it without having to leave your home page and without being placed in a queue.
87% of customers use mobiles for purchases and often have issues and unsatisfactory experiences with customer service on mobile.
5. Automate Responses to FAQs
The goal is to make customer service as easy and fast as possible, so chatbots are another approach to resolving FAQs. Customers can access chatbots like self-service at any time for help.
It takes some of the hard work from self-service as chatbots can use intent recognition software to identify what the customer needs help with and direct them to the right article.
Chatbot support on your brand website or app can help you provide support to customers through the entire course of your customers’ journey. You can recommend products and discounts to customers and make their online experience more interactive.
6. Proactively address concerns
Customer service can gain a unique approach to understanding customers’ struggles by allowing customer service agents to view data of past conversations between the brand and customers, across any channels. And now, there are multiple platforms through which your customers can engage your brand; this empowers customer service agents with a large pool of customer data.
You can use data from multiple channels to provide proactive support. If you notice a rise in a particular complaint on one channel like WhatsApp, you can prepare to receive similar complaints on other channels. Create a knowledge base or an agent playbook to help agents deliver faster and more accurate resolutions.
For example, if there is an error on your website and customers could not log in, you might initially receive messages on your web-chat, but it won’t be long before customers start contacting you from other channels. In this situation, your customer service agents can prepare to help customers facing these issues preemptively and reduce average wait time. You can also proactively send an email or message to customers informing them of this technical issue and how to resolve it.
7. Engage with your customers on social media
If you look at some of the most popular brands, you’ll notice that all of them have a solid focus on engaging with customers on social media. This is because they’ve realized the value of interacting with customers on social media for fun.
Posting funny memes, engaging questions, and witty observations on social media gets a ton of engagement from the audience.
It creates unique memories and deeper connections with customers.
Taco Bell and Netflix have a substantial social media presence, and customers actively engage with them, by doing so, they have ensured customers will always know and recognize their brand. Not to mention when customers share their posts, it boosts their brand exposure and attracts more people.
8. Provide a Live chat option
Live chat is the most popular and preferred method of customer service.
63% of customers are more likely to return to a website that offers live chat support.
44% of customers online say that receiving support for questions on live chat during an online purchase is one of the most essential features a business can offer.
Customers love quick and easy resolutions that need the least hassles, these expectations need to be prioritized and nothing says priority quite like one-on-one interactions.
Customer Service agents can use their extensive knowledge about products and services during live chat conversations to upsell to customers and provide better experiences.
9. Email is still important
Just because it’s not new doesn’t mean it can’t still work well. Although the current industry trend is all about social media and instant messengers, email is still one of the most relevant and frequently used channels.
Not all customers are comfortable using modern channels, and furthermore, many are skeptical about using them for issues that need private information. Email is easy to manage, still effective, and can resolve a good number of your customers’ queries.
A recent report found that 62% of organizations didn’t respond to customer service emails, and 90% of organizations did not send emails to customers acknowledging that they received their email.
This is unfortunate, ignoring customers is never the right step, especially when it comes to emails, considering they are effortless to manage and automate.
10. Constantly measure your KPIs
Testing is the best way to get a system up and running to its best potential.
After implementing new strategies and features, test them over and over again. Ensure everything is working smoothly by monitoring these metrics across channels:
- First response times
- Average handling time
- Customer satisfaction
- Customer Effort Score
If you don’t see an improvement in these metrics, it might indicate that you need to reevaluate your strategy and figure out what’s going wrong. However, if you see positive improvements, you still need to keep a constant eye on them. It is better for you to identify problems before a customer does and leaves.
Omnichannel customer experience is for progressive and future-oriented businesses.
However, it’s important to remember that the human touch ties it all together. A well-trained team that can resolve customer complaints and creates a positive image of your brand is crucial to delivering outstanding customer service.
Your company’s customer service can affect your rate of success and directly affect your revenue. If you implement the right customer service technology, talent, and strategies, you can transform your business’s performance.