How to Handle the Challenges of Customer Service in the Digital World

Posted by John Rake

10/29/15 1:30 PM

Customer service can be challenging enough -- it’s hard to please everyone -- but adding multiple communication outlets to the mix requires even more ingenuity.

While the Internet is a wonderful tool that enables companies to engage more readily, it can also prove overwhelming. Now, instead of just answering customers’ phone calls and emails, contact center agents must also respond to social media posts, blog comments, chat room conversations and even text messaging. According to a Harris Poll survey, 64 percent of U.S. consumers prefer SMS messages over voice for their customer service interactions, with 81 percent saying they’re tired of being tied to a phone or computer while dealing with customer service issues.

Instead of allowing this digital frenzy to overwhelm your agents, contact centers can leverage technology to offset the complexities involved. Follow these steps to keep your multichannel contact center running smoothly:

Keep agents up to date: Contact center agents are often the first connection between your company and its customers. If they’re not given the right training to deliver exceptional service, customers are more likely to be dissatisfied and take their business elsewhere. It’s imperative that agents are fully educated on all of the company’s products and policies. Thanks to the Internet, consumers are much more informed than ever before; the last thing you want is for your customer to know more than your agent.

 

Make sure agents are fully qualified: This takes extensive training, which is a time-consuming obligation for busy managers. Instead, offer your agents customized training precisely when they need it by deploying contact center software with a built-in coaching system. For example, consider implementing tools that capture voice of the customer, a multisource insight platform that focuses on customer needs and expectations. This will give your agents direct feedback from their customers, and allow them to adjust their methods accordingly.

 

Stay connected with all of your company’s channels: Pay attention to every conversation regarding your company. Whether on Facebook, Twitter or your company website, you need to be aware of what’s being said and comment when necessary. Also, set up Google Alerts for industry keywords and regularly monitor all of your sites, and then track and record the data for future analysis.

 

With all of the latest technology available, communication is easier than ever. Help your agents leverage tools that enable them to keep your customers satisfied and grow your business.

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