Some brands think it’s old school; others think its limited use might not warrant the human resources investment, but for customer satisfaction ratings, the numbers don’t lie.
Consumers who use live chat for service and support talk it up as one of the most satisfying support channels available today. Stats from the new eDigital Customer Service Benchmark report show live chat out in front in terms of customer satisfaction levels with 73% of consumers saying they were happy with their live chat experience. In comparison, email had a 61% satisfaction rate, social media had a 48% satisfaction rate, and phone came in at just 44%.
The eDigital survey of more than 2,000 consumers echoes other 2013 customer satisfaction surveys including BoldChat’s 2013 Live Chat Effectiveness Research Report which showed a 77% good or excellent satisfaction rating for chat. Read More
Parature’s annual customer service and users conference, Parafest, returns to Las Vegas in 2014. Save the date for February 24 – 25 at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. The customer service centered conference with this year’s theme of “Customer First” will allow Parature users from around the globe and across major industries to gain valuable customer service and experience best practices from experts and thought leaders, while networking with colleagues, peers and customer service executives from some of the world’s best-known brands.
The 2014 event will feature “Customer First” focused keynotes from noted CRM analyst Paul Greenberg and customer service expert Shep Hyken with additional keynote and track session speakers announced leading up to the event.
As brands adjust to the emergence and convergence of both new and more customer service channels, reactive customer service remains the day-to-day norm for most organizations. But taking steps to move from predominantly reactive service and support delivery, to reactively proactive, to proactive can make all the difference in increased customer satisfaction and retention, establishing a differentiator for the brands that can (even at times) delight in this manner.
According to the findings of a recent Harris Interactive survey of more than 2,000 consumers, 87% of U.S. adults are receptive to being proactively contacted by an organization or company when it comes to service and support. Of those surveyed, nearly three-quarters (73%) who have had a pleasant surprise or positive experience with proactive communication from a brand report they had a also positive change in their perception of that organization; 62% said they took action as a result of that positive experience. Read More
As we approach the final month of 2013, trends and predictions for 2014 will become the focus for most brands, especially the marketing and customer service departments. Many fundamental changes have occurred in the customer service space in 2013, and one of the biggest has been the focus on delivering a consistent and personalized customer experience across all major channels. Read More
Via the web, your customers now complete thousands of transactions and purchases on their own without any support from your brand. Many even find the answers to their own customer service questions by using your website’s self-service knowledgebase or simply Googling their question or issue. So when customers do reach out, they’re usually truly in need of someone’s help; they usually need or want it quickly; and they’re typically a bit emotional about their service interaction already, be it frustrated, angry, worried, anxious, etc.
In Accenture’s 2013 Global Consumer Pulse Survey, 82% of customers that switched brands due to poor customer service said the company could have done something to prevent them from switching. The number one thing? First contact resolution. While every customer service issue can’t be solved on the first try, here are eight “you had me at hello” phrases every customer longs to hear, some surprisingly simple, but not used nearly enough: Read More
As we begin looking forward to and making plans for the new year, it’s important that we also look back at the customer service lessons we’ve learned, so that we can apply them to future efforts and campaigns.
While social media is no longer a new communications channel for brands, it still seems to present a lot of major challenges when it comes to communicating to and with customers. Here are five top 2013 social customer service lessons learned that may serve every organization well in 2014:
1. Don’t Jeopardize Your Customers’ Trust.
In a July 2013 publicity stunt to celebrate its 20th anniversary, Chipotle faked its Twitter account being hacked, which left a lot of followers wondering if the brand that expounds “food with integrity” was made up of the same ingredients. Read More
“Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.” ~ John F. Kennedy
Consumer preferences and expectations are changing and growing just as quickly as advancements in technology, encouraging (if not demanding) that brands embrace a strategy of non-stop adaptation to the next generation and the next big thing.
Here are 20 expert predictions affecting the near future of customer service and the customer experience, with the first originally made in 2012, already realized:
1. The personal cloud will replace the PC as the center of our digital lives sooner than you might think: 2014. ~ Gartner Hype Cycle for Cloud Computing 2012
2. 70% of businesses are anticipated to use social media as part of their customer service programs by mid-2014. ~ Aberdeen Group
3. Global smartphone use will reach 2 billion by 2015. ~ Bloomberg
4. Companies will spend about $900 million on mobile processes reinvention services in 2013, a number that will more than triple in 2014, and continue to rise in 2015. ~ Forrester Read More
According to the ninth annual Accenture Global Consumer Pulse Survey which measured the experiences of 12,867 customers in 32 countries across ten industries, consumers continue to have great expectations for customer service, yet continue to be met by the same old frustrations including long hold times and having to repeat the same information to multiple CSRs or across multiple channels.
In 2013, 62% of global consumers switched service providers due to poor customer service experiences, up 4% from last year. Read More
From flipped classrooms to self-directed learning, even for the most traditional higher education institutions, everything is moving increasingly online with a focus towards mobile. The goal with BYOD (bring your own device) for higher learning is to turn an increasingly prevalent classroom disruptor into a cost-effective education tool. But the benefits come with an equal set of challenges and investments, from handling increased IT support requests to managing both learning and support delivery across a myriad of unique devices.
Higher education institutions, however, must be able to accept and handle all of these challenges, especially given that 85% of education institutions currently allow some form of Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) on their school networks, according to a global Bradford Networks Impact of BYOD on Education survey.
BYOD use will only continue to grow as a consideration for prospective students. According to the 21st Century Campus Report, 87% of current college students consider technology offerings when deciding which institution to attend. And 92% of current high school students say that technology will be a key differentiator during their university selection process. For recruiting and relevance alone, there’s no turning back on BYOD and innovation investments.
Where Campus Support and Customer Service Connect
B2C businesses especially have had to take an early lead on offering a mobile version of service and support information and access. Forrester forecasts that companies will spend around $900 million on mobile process reinvention services in 2013, a number that will more than triple in 2014 and continue to rise through 2015. Read More
In a recent presentation for customer service software provider Parature, Forrester Principal Analyst Kate Leggett discussed the current state of multichannel customer service and areas of focus for 2014. Here are 10 top takeaways:
1. 90% of customer experience decision makers say that a good experience is critical to their success; 63% think the importance of the customer experience has risen.
2. While most brands believe their organization provides either good or excellent customer service, the Forrester State of Customer Experience report shows that consumers think just 31% of brands provide a good experience, while only 8% provide an excellent experience. Read More