The tech industry can be an unforgiving jungle for customers. Tech has always been an impersonal industry, partly because many techies are always better with machines and gadgets than with people. Plus, with the growth of ecommerce and companies that deal exclusively with digital products, the distance between customers and authentic customer service is getting wider.
Tech companies are increasingly relying on online forums, inefficient FAQ pages, and automated chat bots for customer service. Customers who don’t find help via these platforms are often left hanging and may actually never interact with a real person.
In a business environment where success is dictated by the customer base, tech companies can benefit greatly from a well-implemented customer retention strategy. Nearly each major statistic favors companies with good customer service. For instance, over 58% of customers will spend more money on a brand offering a good customer service experience. Additionally, for every five customers trying out a new brand, at least three will be looking for better customer service.
So, how do extremely impersonal tech companies filled with geeky engineers and programmers conquer the customer service and retention conundrum? Read on for some simple pointers.
1. Guarantee information privacy and security
Customers expect tech companies to be at the top of their game when it comes to the integrity and security of their personal data. When customers shop online, they usually leave large amounts of sensitive data that can be easily vandalized without the proper safeguards. So, when a tech-savvy customer realizes they cannot entrust an online company with their data, they may choose to switch to a competitor or simply walk into a physical store, leaving you with one less customer.
There are many ways tech companies can protect personal data. A good starting point is installing SSL certificates for websites to ensure data is encrypted. That lock and HTTPS symbol on the address bar gives customers the confidence they need to transact with an online company.
2. Be visible and accessible across multiple platforms
Customers need to be able to reach your brand wherever they are. This might seem like a big challenge, considering the high number of platforms that seem to be cropping up every other day. Still, successful brands like eBay and Amazon are conquering this space by ensuring they are visible on at least the most important platforms like Facebook and Twitter.
There are plenty of tools that can be used to manage a brand’s online presence. A social media management tool like Hootsuite will help you manage your social media presence, helping you keep abreast with posts, comments, tweets, and other social actions from customers on social media.
By being able to reach a tech brand via multiple platforms, customers can rest assured that their questions can be answered anytime, which is a plus for customer service and retention.
3. Have a responsive customer service department
For many online-based tech companies, customers can’t just walk in into a customer service office to vent. This is why it’s always important for any online brand to respond to customer queries in a helpful and timely manner. For instance, a customer whose credit card transaction failed for no clear reason should be able to find a helpful human being on the other end of an online chat even if it’s late at night.
In addition to availability, customers should always be able to find value every time they reach out. Many companies respond to this need by installing inefficient chat bots that rarely serve their purpose. A good solution would be to hire a freelancer in a different time zone and who’s knowledgeable about the company to engage the customer. With a good NDA, freelancers can be a cost-effective way to keep your customer service department available.
When crafting a customer service and retention strategy for a tech company, it’s always best to keep everything simple and humanly as possible. When you do decide to stick with FAQ pages and online forums, leave nothing to chance when populating them with information.
Keep them simple and straight to the point, keeping in mind that your customers won’t spend more than a couple of minutes looking for solutions.