5 Customer Service Trends That Will Reshape the Future
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Customer service is not static – over the past few years, phones have replaced house calls, mobile phones have replaced landlines, and email and instant messaging have replaced all of the above. In order to keep existing customers and attract new ones, cutting-edge customer service is a must.
Did you know that customers are four times more likely to make a purchase from a competitor if their problem is not addressed by customer service? The need for service is very real. To keep customers happy, brands have to remain up to date with current customer service trends and predicted changes over the next 5 years.
Businesses are becoming increasingly more aware of the connection between customer service experience and profit. It has been a game-changer for companies once plagued by a bad reputation and bad rapport with customers. Successful organizations have improved relationships and customer satisfaction while meeting productivity and quality goals. In order to achieve optimal customer experience, companies should focus on improving their software and website functionality and hiring staff to help optimize engagement.
Customer Service Trends
Here are the 5 customer service trends we will see in the coming years.
1. Social Media as a Default Channel for Customer Service
First among customer service trends is social media. A recent Microsoft study suggests that only 13% of consumers over the age of 55 have used social media for customer service purposes, as opposed to 55% of those between 18 and 34. As Millennials and Gen Z grow up to claim a bigger share in the market, social media outreach is likely to take up at least half of a company’s customer service requests.
Picture 1. Social media as a customer service trend
Placing a social media intern in charge of your Facebook, Instagram and Twitter may no longer be enough – in fact, companies should start hiring permanent staff to manage their social media accounts. It’s essential that your staff, including customer service agents, has a profound understanding of your company’s products and services. Using chatbots to answer frequently asked questions will free up time for your human staff members to tackle more complicated requests.
2. Personalized AI
Automation is rapidly becoming more personal – AI and Automation are hot topics in every sector, and customer service is no exception. “However, when we think of customer-service automation, you might just think of automated menus and robocalls. This can be viewed as actually worse than no customer service at all to some clients – automation should be more personal and, well, human!” explains Kelly Maxwell, a communications manager at Writemyx.com and Britstudent.com.
When used correctly, customer service software used should lighten an agent’s load without skimping on the human touch. Five9, a contact center software provider, suggested that agents should use real-time transcription services so that they can achieve 95% accuracy with custom tuning and focus more on the customer and less on transcription errors.
Like in any other industry, automation in customer service should be used moderately, and combined with human staff. Ideally, it should help your staff respond in an appropriate and timely manner. Nowadays, customers frequently expect chat solutions to be fluid and versatile – they should easily switch between text, video, screen sharing and calls without interruption. Think about it – there’s nothing more frustrating than having your entire request canceled because you switched from an IM to a call and have to go through the hassle of explaining your problems all over again!
Modern customer service software should leverage the true power of AI – not just use simplistic measures to pacify customers! AI should not replace human agents, but rather help increase their efficiency.
Picture 2. AI helps to increase agent efficiency
3. Customer Reps Will Be Available Online
As more customer service plans become strictly online, customer service staff should follow suit. Nearly half of users will leave a website if they can’t find what they’re looking for, according to Acquire. Customer service agents need to meet customers there, regardless of what the issue might be. Co-browsing tools allow customer service agents to share their screens with clients in real-time, and video chats enable agents to recognize their customers’ non-verbal cues, which significantly improves their communication.
4. Customer Service Training Will Be Inclusive
Although employees like engineers and marketers may not directly interact with customers, they need a certain amount of soft skills. This is because all members of a company should be aware of their customers’ needs and trained to deliver exceptional support by knowing the common sources of problems for customers – and the solutions.
“People in companies should be thinking beyond their roles and subject areas, and instead of taking a multidisciplinary route to know about the entire company. This is particularly important as employees represent a company online, and need to be trained in how to do so – or rather, to stay ‘on brand.’” says Michael Weaver, a business writer at 1Day2write.com and Nextcoursework.com.
Picture 3. Customer service training
It’s essential that every employee has an understanding of the brand, products and services and an ability to address frequently asked questions/support requests. Moreover, customer care agents should be cross-trained so that they are experts in all forms of communication, rather than focusing on a specific channel like phones or instant messaging. A diverse, flexible skill set will allow them to tend to all customers, regardless of the communication channel.
5. Companies Will Be More Successful
The last among customer service trends are companies that will become more successful. Because as customer service evolves, companies are becoming skilled in dealing with customer complaints and finding solutions.
They are beginning to understand that customer service is more than just reading scripted responses and handling tickets. More than anything, it’s about doing your best to keep your customers happy! This trend will undoubtedly result in more mutually beneficial customer success stories as well as positive third-party feedback.
Customer Service Trends Wrap Up
In conclusion, companies are beginning to understand how to handle severe issues like cyber -attacks. Since three three-fifths of them experienced one in 2019, agents should be prepared to deal with one should the need arise. This is highly important since most businesses depend on availability – if your phones or internet are down for several days, customers will take their money elsewhere.
So, no matter whether your organization is just beginning its customer service journey or is looking to optimize existing customer-service procedures, the next few years will be crucial for the sector. Becoming customer-centric will help companies not only survive but thrive, increasing loyalty and decreasing complaints. So try to keep up with these customer service trends!
Mildred Delgado is a young and responsible marketing strategist at Academicbrits.com and PhdKingdom.com. She works with a company’s marketing team in order to create a fully functional site that accurately portrays the company. Mildred presents this information in a series of marketing proposals. You can find her works at Originwritings.com.
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