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Jan 26, 2022 Randy Clapp

5 Steps to Effectively Streamline & Improve Your Customer Service Program

Today, having a great product or service is only half the battle when it comes to delighting customers. With more competition than ever before, the customer experience (CX) is the only true way to stand out, and that requires a world-class customer service program. 

In fact, 89 percent of brands are now competing primarily based on the customer experience (up from just 36 percent in 2021) and 46 percent are considering investing in customer support as their number one priority over the next five years (Gartner). 

With that in mind, we take a look at the five most important steps your business can take to streamline its customer service program and generate new revenue opportunities. 

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#1 - Understand your customer journey, and analyze it

To create a streamlined customer service program that provides your customers with exactly what they’re looking for, your organization needs to become familiar with the customer journey. The customer journey is the entire experience a customer has with your brand, including the build up to them buying a product and the interactions that take place after.

Understanding the customer journey gives your business a better idea of what drives a prospect to your business, what questions they have during their decision making process, why they choose to purchase your product over the competition and what you need to do to continue supporting that customer after their purchase. 

Once you know the typical customer journey, you will have the information you need to build successful scripts for issue resolutions and introduce new customer support channels where your customers want to interact with your brand. This helps you to build an omnichannel customer service strategy with self-service at the core of your offering. 

You can then test that customer journey. Keep an eye out for areas of the customer journey that could be a pain point for your customers, such as slow-loading web pages, gaps on your self-service pages, holes in customer service representative (CSR) knowledge and so much more. The better you’re prepared to interact with your customers, the happier they’ll be.

#2 - Guide your agents’ performance with in-the-moment feedback

There’s a fear that artificial intelligence, also known as AI, is here to replace real humans. That’s not the case at all. In fact, contact center artificial intelligence is being used by organizations to enhance the performance of their customer service representatives.

Artificial intelligence can be used to gather information from an agent-customer conversation, whether it’s on the phone or through a message service, such as detecting underlying issues, swiftly communicating changes in script and analyzing customer emotions based on the tone of their voice and other factors.

With AI technology, organizations are able to provide real-time insights and feedback to their customers to help guide interactions and deliver better outcomes for customers. With artificial intelligence, the CSR is able to deliver superior customer service results for your business. 

#3 - Analyze customer interactions to better guide your customer service program

To improve your customer service and build a seamless experience for your customers, it’s crucial that you know exactly what your customers want from your brand. The best performing customer service programs will be proactive, building processes that exceed your customer service expectations. 

To do that, you need to know what your customers' issues are before they’ve even contacted your brand. To gain actionable insights that will improve your customer service program, your organization should focus on gathering customer service analytics and customer data from the real interactions you have with your customers

By collecting and analyzing customer interaction data, you can gain insights such as the top 10 customer queries, the top 10 product complaints or the top 10 product issues that came into your customer service team over the past 12 months. This helps you both improve your customer service program to better answer customer queries, as well as make improvements to your products and services that reduce those queries in the future. 

#4 - Use automation to empower your agents to focus on higher-value tasks

There’s another benefit of contact center artificial intelligence that we didn't mention in our earlier point - it can also be used to automate your customer service processes, freeing up agents to work on higher-value tasks that drive real satisfaction to the customer. 

There are a number of ways that AI can be used to automate processes and create a more seamless customer experience, such as better call routing to the appropriate agent, chatbots that answer simple customer queries and personalization. 

When you automate processes with artificial intelligence, your business is able to free up bandwidth for your customer service agents to focus on higher value tasks. 

#5 - Measure customer service performance 

Successful customer service relies on continuous improvement. To ensure your brand is able to drive future improvements, it’s important that you are measuring and analyzing customer service data to see where you are performing well and where you can make improvements. 

Important customer service metrics to track include KPIs such as average handle time (AHT), call abandonment rate (CAR), first-call resolution (FCR), customer effort score (CES), net promoter score (NPS) and so much more.

Interested in learning more about creating a seamless customer service strategy, and want to know how an outsourced contact center partner such as Advantage Communications can help? Get in touch with our team of experts today. We’d love to answer any questions that you have. 

Operational Efficiency Guide

Published by Randy Clapp January 26, 2022
Randy Clapp