Customer Experience is still on trend for 2019, with customers demanding personalized, frictionless experiences and businesses rushing to meet their demands and deliver them. A 2015 Gartner study predicted that by 2019 more than 50% of organisations will redirect their investments to customer experience. The report findings were correct, but it is now predicted that even more are making customer experience a top priority. So, what should you be looking at as you move into 2019:
They number of ways that customers can connect with business is growing. But all customers care about is the ability to reach out, connect and engage with their brands however they choose and of course to get a prompt response. Whether that is via a messaging app, a social media channel, or an online chat, to the customer it’s all the same they just want the most convenient way, for them, to connect and get what they want – quick and accurate responses.
And those organisations with the strongest omni-channel customer engagement strategies retain an average of 89% of their customers, compared to 33% for companies with weak omni-channel strategies (Aberdeen Group).
So, ensuring the business has the ability to connect with customers in any channel is crucial and organisations that aren't focusing an omni-channel customer engagement are lagging behind.
How easy is it for customers to do business with your company? Are there processes that make it harder for customers to interact and have the customer experience they expect? Most companies have processes that create friction for customers, and it is these frictions that make it harder for customers to do business with you. Customers will do more business with the companies that are easiest to work with. And they may even pay as much as a 16% premium for a better experience.
So, in 2019 review customer touchpoints and identify points along the customer journey that slow down the process or are inconvenient for customers and remove them. This is vital for Customer Service. Make it easier to get in touch and get answers in one touch. Using automation and chatbots are key into removing friction especially in the area of customer service.
Customers are using their apps to connect with their friends, family, and their brands. They read, shop, learn and communicate using their apps. So why should contacting your customer service team be any different. Customers no longer want to use voice-to-voice communications if they don't have to.
Calls to businesses are expected to exceed 169 billion per year by 2020, according to BIA/Kelsey, but those calls do not have to be voice calls. Using mobile messaging is far more efficient than having customers waiting in queues.
The growth of messaging apps and chatbots are reducing the need for live agent engagement, but customers will always want the option of being able to reach out for a human connection but only when they need to. So, having the ability to engage via mobile messaging, whether that is via a chatbot or agent is crucial.
We already know that mobile experience is important, so if you haven’t already done so, take time to review how mobile ready the business is and how to effectively roll out mobile messaging.
It feels like artificial intelligence is taking over the world as there is a lot of hype around it, some of it overstated and some you should take note of. What AI is doing to enhance customer engagement is amazing. Just looking at how it is being used in customer service to effectively manage inbound customer queries by utilizing chatbots to handle lower value queries and transferring to a live agent to handle the more complex or sensitive issues.
AI is also growing in popularity as a means of support for contact centre agents, where AI is offering suggested responses or sharing customer information based on previous issues, purchases and providing insights to proactively address problems.
According to Deloitte, 62% of companies view customer experience delivered by the contact centers as a competitive differentiator, therefore, ensuring contact centre processes are as efficient and effective as they can be is key to driving customer experience and customer loyalty.
If you haven’t looked at how AI can improve your call centre not only with improved productivity and reduced costs but also superior customer engagement, the time to act is now!
Many customers are happy to go and get the answers to their questions themselves and would rather do this than engage with the business directly. They view getting the answer themselves faster.
Look into providing customer self-service solutions. Your customers will thank you for it.