How to improve and optimise the efficiency of your customer service practices
The demand for digital services and experiences has reached an all-time high, forcing firms to change to satisfy changing customer expectations quickly. The modern world is changing in terms of what customers want and what they expect from businesses, and if you want to succeed in such an environment, you’ll need to keep up with the trends and the quickening pace.
As a result, providing outstanding customer service online is increasingly considered an essential part of modern business, and the standards are only ever going up, primarily when many businesses treat improved customer service as a benefit or feature to set themselves apart from the competition, thus increasing income, and adding value.
That being said, good customer service entails much more than simply assisting current clients. It’s all about how you approach and help people who come into contact with your company.
The facts are clear. When businesses prioritise better customer service experiences, they can generate sales up to 8% faster than the market average. This continues as it’s undeniably important across the entire client lifecycle to treat the well. The better you treat your customers, the more loyal they will become.
What’s more, on the other side of the spectrum, 61% of customers have discontinued doing business with a company because of the bad customer service they received.
So, under the new normal, how can organisations provide outstanding customer service across the customer journey? It all boils down to efficiency and delivering customers with personalised, proactive, and real-time experiences., which is exactly what we’re looking at throughout this article.
1. Introducing the Customer Service KPIs and Indicators
The first stage in every strategy is to define key performance indicators and metrics to address where you’re at, what you’re working with, and so you can identify what you’re working on and where you need to improve.
It’s near-impossible to know how well your customer service is functioning and what needs to be improved without measuring for the facts. Otherwise, you’re just aiming in the dark while hoping for the best.
So, how do you evaluate the effectiveness of customer service? Let’s take a look at some of the metrics you’ll want to be aware of and what they actually mean.
2. How Quickly the First Response Is Addressed
Customers are impatient. There’s no question about it. When they get in contact with you and what something is sorted out, they want it sorted ASAP. If they receive super-fast responses and resolutions from another company, they’re going to want the same from you.
Basically, you’re going to need to time how long you keep your customers waiting on the phone and how long their emails remained unanswered, and then aim to improve this time, ensuring your customers are dealt with in a timely way and aren’t kept waiting.
According to research, corporations respond to customer support queries on average in 12 hours and 10 minutes, which, in our opinion, is far too long! Customers anticipate rapid responses from digital channels, but it can vary with other forms.
It’s also worth thinking about looking into the FCR rating. This is the percentage of customer inquiries that are resolved during the first contact. First Contact Resolution (FCR) is often used as a metric of efficiency in call centres or contact centres. It’s a great indicator of how well your customer service team is at resolving problems.
3. How Quickly the First Interaction Is Resolved
From first responding to a problem or query, you need to ensure you’re timing the rest of the interaction, seeing how long it takes for someone to come to with a problem and then go away happy with their resolution in mind. You’ll then want to aim to reduce this time as much as possible.
Resolution time or resolution The average time between a customer’s first interaction and the marking of the interaction, issue, or ticket as “resolved” is called time. TTR or MTTR stands for Time to Resolution, often known as Mean Time to Resolution. This could happen in the first communication, or over the course of days, or even a week in extreme circumstances.
However, remember that quality is everything. Although a speedy response is efficient, poor service does not deliver an outstanding customer experience. TTR is an average over a period of time that may be calculated by simply noting the length of each customer care call.
4. Any Feedback from Customer After Interaction
After interactions and conversations have taken place, you’ll want to be thinking about gathering feedback from your customers to see how effective your service was and what their thoughts are on the matter. After all, it’s their opinions that are going to matter the most.
A lot of companies do this in lots of different ways. Some will send you a text message after the phone call asking for feedback. If you’re online, some websites will ask you to hit a smiley face to show how unhappy or happy you were with the service, or have a small form asking you to fill out how happy you were with the live chat service you just received.
One of the best metrics you can use here is the Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI). It’s a metric that measures how satisfied customers are. Customer satisfaction score, abbreviated as CSAT, is a measure of customer satisfaction. It assesses client satisfaction with your company’s services or products.
5. Customer Effort Scores
“Customer Effort Score is a customer experience statistic that asks customers to rate their overall satisfaction with your services and products. “Did you find it simple to resolve your problem?” Specifically, how effective was the customer service experience?” shares Nick Faris, a marketing writer at Research Papers UK.
Through a review process, you can get feedback on this aspect in several ways. For example, you could ask for a review figure that gives you a rating out of ten, out of five, or even by reacting to your content using an emoji or a smiley face that represents how they feel. It all depends on what works for you.
6. Taking to Action to Improve Your Customer Service
With your metrics in place, it’s time to look into how you can use this data to highlight problem and improvement areas to help bring your customer service efforts up to scratch.
7. Provide Proactive Assistance
Again, good customer service isn’t only about helping customers; it’s also about increasing income and driving more sales. This is when proactive assistance comes into play.
It’s also a terrific method to go above and above for customers and reach out to them before they ask. Proactivity aids with the management of incoming inquiries, ensuring that your customer support tickets do not accumulate!
And make sure you are being proactive since research shows that you can improve customer support efficiency up to 7 times. There are several ways you can do this.
“First, start by targeting new and returning visitors. This means making sure you’re displaying different messages to new and returning visitors. Why not create a relationship with clients who have already visited your website by sending them personalised welcome back messages?” explains LJ Harper, a business blogger at Writinity and Draftbeyond.
What’s more, by using solutions that help you recover abandoned shopping baskets, you can engage clients who have placed products in their cart but have not finished the transaction.
Some great ways to get around this include sending a chat message like “Hi there! “, you can reach out to them ahead of time and find out what went wrong. “Do you require assistance with your check-out?”
What’s more, modern technology allows you to do so much more. For example, screen sharing has become widely accepted among populations around the world, so instead of trying to blindly guide someone through a solution while hoping they’re doing it right, screen share solutions now exist to help you give such a powerfully accurate and helpful experience, it could be like nothing your customers have ever seen before.
8. Automate Parts of Your Process
Customers may self-serve and obtain answers right away when they need them, thanks to automation. Typically, this entails the use of chatbots or AI technologies, which are common throughout the business world these days.
Automation relieves customer service teams of stress, allowing them to focus on more vital support issues while saving time and money. This not only benefits your company, but it also matches the high expectations of customers who now want service on their terms - when and where they want it.
Up to 80% of customer care enquiries can be handled by chatbots. And, while some personalisation is possible, automation is still the greatest way to assist clients with simple, recurrent questions, such as those found on your FAQ page.
9. Assign requests to the Appropriate Team
Sure, it can feel like a bit of a pain when you’re on the phone trying to get through a company, and you’re going through seemingly endless menus to get to the correct department, but it does help.
Routing customer support inquiries to the correct person are the key to speedier responses, addressing problems promptly, and enhancing customer happiness. When a consumer contacts your company, they expect to be connected to a customer service representative who can help them resolve their issue.
By ensuring that client concerns are addressed by the appropriate chat agent from the start, you may reduce wait times and make better use of agent resources. Not to mention the possibility of addressing the problem within the initial client engagement.
10. Get Feedback From Customers
Feedback is a key indicator of how effectively your customer service is working since it allows you to gauge how satisfied your customers are. It can also assist you in identifying flaws or issues with your service, such as slowness.
Interactions with customers provide good possibilities for getting meaningful input and are critical for:
- Increasing the quality of both services and products
- figuring out how to improve the website and the online client experience
- Keeping track of your client satisfaction and effort scores
It can be difficult to get customers to submit feedback, but customer service encounters on your website are a great place to start! Here are some suggestions for getting more client feedback. After each live chat session, have a feedback pop-up appear automatically.
It’s not just about speed when it comes to customer service efficiency. While quick replies and resolution times are important, efficiency also entails offering good customer care along the journey. Customers will buy from organisations that provide exceptional customer service 93% of the time.
Even minor adjustments might have a significant impact on your company. So, why not start with a few of these pointers and elevate your customer service experience? Good luck and see the benefits for yourself!
Jenny Williams is a Business analyst and writer at Assignment Writing Service and Essay Service. She also writes for Gumessays.com service blog, where she helps businesses, especially small business owners, make the most of modern business solutions.