If Executed Correctly, Digital Channels Can Help Customers Solve Problems.
The explosion of people using their mobile phones to access the Internet has led to an overwhelming number of customers now expecting to interact through the same medium.
The number of mobile-only Internet users now exceeds the number of PC-only Internet users in Australia according to research by Deloitte, and this holds a particular significance for most companies. This trend indicates that companies now need to focus not only on computer-based platforms but also need to pay attention to mobile platforms to offer customers an equal user and customer experience.
Customers need and want resolutions to their queries and problems
Although, still important channels for connecting with a company, phone or in-person are dropping in the preference list and in many cases web and mobile are a first point of contact with a business. This obviously signifies that there is bound to be less dependence on contact centres.
However, already we’re seeing a shift in the way contact centres are recruiting as disruption is no stranger to any industry, the contact centre is on the verge of a shift as more businesses move to embrace work at home as a viable and cost effective solution.
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A better digital experience
The consequence of this shift is that there will eventually be more interactions through digital channels. This digital transition doesn’t mean abandoning other channels in favour of a purely digital experience. Customers still want options and often carefully consider where they feel they can most effectively get the resolution they want or need. One bad experience is all it takes for a customer to stop doing business with a company. That bad experience doesn’t necessarily have to be with a customer service representative or a sales agent, it could be something as simple as trying to locate an address or phone number of a business on a mobile device. Therefore, companies could do better in building and integrating self-help resources on to their websites and mobile platforms, for example. For complicated issues, videos can also be produced which demonstrate solutions to resolve problems – videos are actually the most consumed form of content over the Internet today.
The chat-bot solution
Customer service representatives are not required for every interaction with customers over social media, email or even phone calls; chat-bots, which mimic human interaction, are already making a mark on our world. In fact, most people don’t realise that they’ve likely already had multiple encounters with bots during their contact with a company. Chat-bots are of course only as effective as the self-help resources that need to be already in place. The good news is that you don't have to spend money on building chat-bots which pick up on certain pre-specified keywords to formulate their responses – Facebook Messenger is already providing this service for small businesses worldwide. Plus, businesses like Flamingo.io are working in the artificial intelligence space to make the digital assistant much more than the sum of its parts by upping the ante for fintech.
However your business chooses to structure its omni-channel, it’s imperative that you test, refine, test, refine, test, refine – and when you think you’ve got it – start testing and refining again.
Photo credit: DoubleM