Businesses around the world understand the importance of digitalizing their services to optimize customer experience (CX). We’re currently at the height of the digital age. Tech dominates and consumers expect on-demand support and increased efficiency. To fully engage customers and increase revenue, digitalizing your processes is key – and one of the best places to start is with your customer service.
The rise of tech in business has increased the customer's consciousness of time and efficiency. There’s an increased desire for an optimal digital experience that’s personalized and customer-centric. Offering an exceptional digital customer service means hitting these expectations and using technology to give your customer service an edge.
A streamlined and efficient digital customer service will directly impact the overall CX, leading to happier and more loyal consumers. With the increased engagement, interaction, and options that digitalized customer service offers, your chances of increasing revenue are high.
It all begins with your operating model. You don’t want departments that operate in different silos; it’s important to integrate a model that fosters cross-collaboration. This is where you’ll begin the process of digitalizing your customer service through your marketing funnel.
By getting deep into your company’s design framework to offer an integrated operating model you'll be able to offer a digitalized experience that spans across all of your channels. Digital customer experience is a collaborative effort; it has to involve all sectors of the business in order to run efficiently.
Now that you know the importance of an integrated model to optimizing your CX, we need to analyze what it means to offer exceptional digital customer service to give your business an edge.
To make an impactful change through digitalized customer service, you first have to think about the customer journey. It’s not enough to just make small changes or tweak existing systems – you have to redefine what the customer journey looks like to consumers. It’s only then that you can start to offer an exceptional customer service experience.
The aim is to redesign your journey in a way that promotes efficiency and streamlines the customer service process. Perhaps customers have to fill out lengthy paperwork or constantly log in with their details to access customer service support – this isn’t a streamlined process! Customers are looking for instant, on-demand support, so your digitalized customer service experience has to reflect this.
You can use feedback to help guide you, but consider making changes that increase the speed and efficiency behind your user experience (UX). It all starts with offering multiple ways to contact customer service digitally, including via email, live chat, or voice over IP (VoIP) technologies.
VoIP stands for Voice over Internet Protocol and is a form of technology that allows you to make calls via internet connection rather than a traditional phone network. Implementing it as part of your digital customer service offering means customers will be able to contact you faster. Offering increased functionality, VoIP will allow receptionists to answer more incoming calls regardless of location, so including it as part of your strategy could be effective.
The key is to offer a wide variety of customer journeys rather than one single route. You may already have a few digitalized journeys to accessing support available to customers, but think about what other options you can offer.
Consider using Computer Telephony Integration or CTI customer service as part of your efforts to help streamline processes and connect all your systems with multiple forms of communication (email, SMS, and live chat). You could also switch from offering print contracts and forms to digital paperwork and touch ID or facial recognition for sign-in systems to optimize the CX.
Feedback is key to understanding which parts of the customer journey work. As you begin redesigning the customer journey, remember to always consult customer feedback – it’s an ongoing process that will need to be tested on a regular basis if you want to offer exceptional digitalized customer service.
Consider incorporating a multitude of dynamic feedback processes for your customers. By doing this, you’re offering a number of routes that will appeal to different groups. Digitalize customer feedback by offering processes that are based online such as:
To delve even deeper into this research, you could use customer experience measurement software to help track CX during these processes and everyday customer-to-business interactions.
If you offer other forms of customer service via phone then it could be worth tracking your call center analytics to get a better understanding of where you could improve. Your goal is to offer quick and responsive support to any incoming queries, so be sure to track your analytics to assess your customer relationship management (CRM).
Remember to consistently track your efforts against those of your competitors to see where you could improve, and make sure you implement changes if your feedback brings up a recurring issue.
You might encounter the problem of customers not fully engaging with the digital experience you’re offering – meaning your digitalized customer service efforts will be moot. Some might still prefer face-to-face contact and if this is the case, it points to a flaw in your business operations. You might have a digitalized CX but perhaps you’re not updating customers.
As well as offering exceptional digitalized customer service, you have to ensure that the CX across all digital channels is streamlined and efficient. This will entice users to make more use of them, but make sure they’re updated! Inform customers of any new digital channels and how to use them, as well as the different customer service journeys you have to offer.
This can easily be done by explaining the processes and benefits via video or marketing campaigns, but be sure to have both online and offline campaigns to target a variety of customers. Generating leads is one of your main goals as a business, so be prepared to market to both the offline and online crowds – this way you’ll be able to get your new digitalized offerings out to your most loyal customers.
In order to entice users to use your digitalized customer service offerings you have to make the CX across all channels user friendly and personalized. This could be as simple as using feedback to personalize the CX to specific groups. For example, by changing the layout or streamlining what you have to offer by embedding it within a single channel.
You could also provide incentives to customers to make the switch to accessing customer service digitally, by offering rewards for using digital channels. This could be anything from free coupons to bonus points; the key is to make everything as personalized as possible.
Maximize customer engagement and interaction by providing a multitude of ways to approach customer service queries. Consider combining original methods such as in-person and phone support with chatbots, automated FAQs, live chats, and social media support to leverage automation.
Automating some processes (chatbots and FAQs) while combining it with live support methods will help provide on-demand support to customers. Since we live in a digital age, customers’ expectations have risen and they desire to be given solutions to queries within a matter of moments. By offering a variety of digitalized customer service routes you’ll help meet this need and increase the chances of an optimal CX.
As we touched on briefly at the start, creating an integrated operating model is key to actually delivering your digitalized customer service experiences. All digital channels need to be unified in order to offer exceptional digital customer service. It all needs to be streamlined and since you’ll be providing a variety of digitalized journeys across different channels you’ll need support from all members of your team, regardless of department.
It’s essentially a collaborative effort to provide on-demand support across channels. So, you need to make sure communications across departments are crystal clear. Using project management software could help you track which departments are doing what and how cross-collaboration is occurring.
Since departments will need to be communicating with each other to deliver these journeys, some things can get lost in translation, especially with the different terminology. Combat this issue by providing each department with resources like an HR glossary to overcome any miscommunication problems.
Digitalizing the customer service experience brings up a much wider need to transform many business practices to a digital format. Embracing technology and making it part of your customer engagement strategy will give your business an added edge. And, if done correctly you’ll maximize efficiency and the CX – both of which can lead to increased revenue and ROI.
Remember that offering exceptional digital customer service is an evolving process; it needs to be continuously monitored to ensure you’re offering the most streamlined journeys you can. Using ecommerce KPIs alongside regular feedback will help you in this endeavor and enable you to gain a better understanding of where changes are needed.
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