The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed the business landscape. One of the areas that suffered the most is customer support. To maintain business continuity and boost customer service, businesses need to adopt new technologies and tactics.
Here are four tips that will help you provide exceptional customer support during the pandemic.
1. Migrating to the Cloud Is Critical
Since the outbreak of Coronavirus, many businesses needed to switch to remote work. To enhance the performance of their teams, streamline business processes, and provide timely customer feedback, they have started migrating to the cloud.
In 2020 and beyond, cloud computing is the nerve center of digital transformation. Almost every business process is built on it. Cloud makes your IT infrastructure more efficient, automated, flexible, reliable, and measurable. With it, all teams have access to the same information and can communicate with customers in real-time, irrespective of their location.
However, the transition to the cloud is not something that happens overnight. One of the most important and, yet, neglected aspects of cloud migration is the planning phase. That is when you should rely on cloud enablement services that will help you build a customized and plausible migration plan.
By investing in the right cloud technologies and implementing them strategically, you will move your crucial data and applications effortlessly. That is how you will improve employee performance and ensure they will provide customers with consistent and relevant feedback across multiple channels.
2. Invest in Sophisticated Call Features
Many customers still prefer traditional phone calls when communicating with brands. Statistics say that 59% of customers believe that customer service has lost the human touch. Talking to a customer support agent reveals the human side of your brand and builds trust with users.
Now, the Coronavirus crisis has changed the way call centers work. Businesses are switching to remote work settings and, to keep their call centers consistent and transparent, they need to replace traditional analog phone systems with their cloud-based alternatives.
VoIP systems for businesses are delivered over the internet. They usually include a cloud application for desktop and mobile devices, allowing your employees to communicate with customers via multiple devices, no matter where they are.
Another great benefit of online phones for businesses is that they provide noise-canceling microphones that remove distractions, allowing employees to deliver professional customer support while working from home.
Finally, VoIP offers sophisticated call analytics features. It lets you record calls to analyze brand sentiment. You can even integrate it with your CRM software. When a customer calls, your employee will see an on-screen notification with relevant customer data, such as their name, previous purchases, location, or problems with your brand.
3. Provide Live Chat Support
When interacting with your brand, customers expect you to provide immediate feedback. That is where live chat shines, as it shows the human side of your brand. Your customer representatives will communicate naturally and serve customers with timely feedback. Most importantly, when equipped with the right data, live chat agents will understand customers’ sentiment and needs and adapt their service accordingly.
Use AI chatbots
Built on artificial intelligence, today’s bots are smart. They are continuously collecting customer data and “learning” about their problems, pain points, preferences, and expectations so they can provide fast, accurate, and relevant feedback.
Chatbots can benefit your business in many ways.
First, they will provide consistent and immediate 24/7 customer support, no matter where your customers are.
Second, chatbots give quick answers to all repetitive questions. That way, your live chat agents will be able to focus on more complex customer inquiries.
Third, chatbots can facilitate purchases. Many brands allow customers to order products right from the chat.
Finally, chatbots will personalize user experiences. For example, a bot will ask customers many questions and, based on them, recommend the right products. Some fashion and makeup brands even let customers upload their photos to try out different products online.
4. Offer Self-Service Options
When wanting to find their own solutions or fix minor problems, many customers choose self-service instead of calling your team, sending emails, or chatting with bots. During the COVID-19 pandemic, when everything happens online, this will soon become a preferred form of customer service.
Providing self-service is relatively easy, as it can easily integrate with your existing customer support channels. There are many ways to implement self-service with your digital channels, such as:
- Adding an intuitive knowledge base – a section on your site where customers can find answers to the most common questions. That means you will need to provide relevant documentation of your products and helpful articles. Organize your resources strategically so that customers can find what they are looking for fast.
- Provide product training for customers: By offering explanations on how your products work, how to optimize them the best, and what common problems they can expect, you will help customers become product experts. At the same time, you will demonstrate your dedication to customer satisfaction.
- Build an online community on social networks: Create dedicated groups for your customers, where they can exchange experiences, ask questions, and help each other.
Over to You
Managing a remote customer service department and providing exceptional customer support during the pandemic is not easy. There are many challenges you need to overcome.
However, by investing in the cloud, building a solid migration plan, and choosing the right technologies, you will establish an agile team and overcome geographical barriers.
For your customers, this means receiving more consistent, on-brand, and immediate feedback to their inquiries.