The world is chaotic, to say the least right now. The coronavirus pandemic continues to affect businesses and how we do things in almost every way, but one thing remains constant—customers expect excellent service.
Even though you may be working with a skeleton crew or navigating unprecedented situations in your business, you have to innovate and find ways to make it work even while facing headwinds.
Customer service can’t suffer, because your customers are just as discerning as they were pre-COVID, and in some cases, may even more so.
The following are some things you can do to improve your customer service and strengthen your business reputation at a time when it’s especially important to remain competitive.
Rely On Artificial Intelligence (AI)
If there’s one thing you take from this, it’s how valuable AI can be to provide customer service and field service. This has never held more true than it does now, as you may be looking to find as many ways to deliver service remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic.
If you use AI workforce solutions, you can take the real world experience contained with the information you already have, such as your CMS, and then convert it into an actionable framework. The result is that your service workforce can deal with the most complex issues in a timely way that also takes into account customer preferences.
With AI, you’re implementing a decision-making framework based on those real issues your service employees face, then a resolution can be identified that combines this framework with customer input.
You’re reducing human contact, which is something a lot of customers may be wary of right now, without sacrificing the quality of the service you provide.
Similar to the idea of using AI for service solutions, live chat is also an important part of a strong customer service strategy in 2020.
Live chat instant messaging software will let your customers get an answer immediately, and the faster the response time you can provide, the better. Live chats are more appealing for most consumers, and they’re more cost-effective because your representatives can be chatting with multiple people at the same time.
Along with using AI as part of your service program and your resolution approach, in general, having a multichannel strategy is key for modern customer service.
This means that you go where your customers are, and you engage them across channels but you do so in a streamlined and consistent way. This might mean, for example, Facebook and Instagram as well as live chat.
It may take a little time and research to figure out which channels are worth focusing on for your specific customers, but once you do, you can put resources toward making sure you’re there.
With that being said, don’t overwhelm your employees. Grow your strategy at a sustainable pace, because one of the worst things you can do is require that your customers wait several days for a response. That’s not something the modern consumer tends to be happy with when they’re used to instantaneous service and answers.
A good way to offer a seamless and consistent experience across platforms is to use automation software that integrates with your CRM.
Track the Satisfaction of Your Customers
When you assess the effectiveness of something—anything—in your business, you need to be able to track it. If you aren’t tracking it you don’t know what’s working versus what’s not, and you don’t know where to make changes or improvements.
Ensure that you have a strategy in place for measuring customer satisfaction.
A simple survey with a few questions that you give after customer interactions can be an effective and inexpensive way to track satisfaction.
Finally, reward loyal customers. Loyal customers can be more valuable than trying to obtain new customers. When customers feel emotionally connected to your brand, they’re more likely to not just spend with you, but spend an increasing amount over time.
Figuring out what works for your brand as far as rewarding loyalty is important. For example, maybe this comes in the form of unique discounts or access to private events. Perhaps you explore offering them unique products and services not available to new customers.
No matter the year or what’s going on in the world, the value of good customer service never diminishes. In fact, even when times are tough overall, good customer service can help you weather those times more effectively than other strategies.