Our Predicted Customer Service Trends for 2015

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Go mobile or go home. As we do our best to look into the future to see where cus­tomer ser­vice trends are headed the one area that is spot­lighted for 2015 is mobile. We already saw move­ment toward mobile last year and we expect that this will only strengthen in the upcom­ing year.

Mobile, Mobile Everywhere

With smart­phones and tablets becom­ing more pow­er­ful, and more seam­less and rich appli­ca­tions avail­able for mobile devices, con­sumers will expect to be able to inter­act effort­lessly with companies.

As of now, it seems the retail indus­try will be most impacted by mobile use and shop­ping expe­ri­ences will be dras­ti­cally altered.  As mobile pay­ment options con­tinue to pro­lif­er­ate, we expect to see mobile com­merce increase as a result.

What this means for com­pa­nies is pro­vid­ing a sat­is­fy­ing dig­i­tal expe­ri­ence will become increas­ingly impor­tant.  As tech­nol­ogy con­tin­ues to dom­i­nate our lives, cus­tomer ser­vice deliv­ery needs to be han­dled through these mobile devices. This will require much more than a patch or quick “add-on” fea­ture to your cur­rent web­site or mobile opti­mized soft­ware. As we move for­ward soft­ware will become the brand. Mak­ing mobile soft­ware the pri­or­ity will dom­i­nate the indus­try as more than 50% of adults cur­rently use a mobile device and 76% of mil­len­ni­als do. In 2014 the total num­ber of vis­i­tors to web­sites from mobile devices exceeded those from desk­tops. There is no get­ting around that mobile is here to stay.

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The Cus­tomer Expe­ri­ence and Mobile Devices

The same basics of cus­tomer care apply no mat­ter how a cus­tomer is access­ing your com­pany. Con­tin­u­ing to focus on pro­vid­ing quick answers or solu­tions and meet­ing cus­tomers where they’re at remains impor­tant. That being said, cus­tomers are turn­ing to their mobile devices to solve prob­lems so com­pa­nies need to make sure that their soft­ware allows cus­tomers to get the answers they’re look­ing for. If cus­tomers can’t quickly access your com­pany or find infor­ma­tion on your prod­ucts or ser­vices, you’ll lose them to your com­peti­tors who are more read­ily accessible.

Here are four tips for mak­ing sure you are mobile-centric in your cus­tomer ser­vice delivery:

  1. Make it effort­less. More than 52% of cus­tomers will aban­don an online pur­chase if they can’t access a quick answer. Cus­tomers expect to be able to com­mu­ni­cate with a busi­ness across mul­ti­ple chan­nels from their mobile devices. Ensur­ing that cus­tomers can access your via phone, live chat, e-mail, social media and mes­sag­ing is becom­ing more important.
  2. Equal knowl­edge across all touch­points. This is where your train­ing team kicks into high gear. As cus­tomers access your com­pany across mul­ti­ple chan­nels and touch­points, your employ­ees need to be oper­at­ing from the same knowl­edge base so that answers are uni­fied and coor­di­nated. Empow­er­ing agents to offer per­son­al­ized and engag­ing ser­vice, no mat­ter how the cus­tomer is reach­ing out helps fos­ter cus­tomer loyalty.
  3. Data is your friend. Before mobile devices dis­rupted nor­mal ser­vice deliv­ery chan­nels, com­pa­nies relied on data col­lected from agents and depart­ments that had con­tact with the cus­tomer. The same holds true for mobile CS deliv­ery. Mon­i­tor­ing the mul­ti­ple chan­nels that your cus­tomers com­mu­ni­cate allows you the oppor­tu­nity to take the pulse of where your cus­tomers are at.
  4. The agent still mat­ters. Cus­tomers cor­re­late a good agent expe­ri­ence with higher sat­is­fac­tion rat­ings accord­ing to a For­rester report. Train­ing will remain impor­tant to ensure agents are able to pro­vide quick turn­around to answers or solu­tions when a cus­tomer reaches out.

The mobile dom­i­na­tion shouldn’t come as much sur­prise as we’ve seen its impact over the past year. What is new is the real­ity that this isn’t a pass­ing phase that can be ignored or down­played by com­pa­nies. To remain com­pet­i­tive will require mak­ing mobile a pri­or­ity and pos­si­bly redesign­ing soft­ware to best accom­mo­date the customer’s expec­ta­tion that she’ll be able to access your prod­uct or ser­vice from her hand-held device.  Con­tin­u­ing to focus on thor­ough train­ing and pay­ing atten­tion to deliv­er­ing excel­lent cus­tomer care remain the same, what is chang­ing is how those ser­vices are accessed and deliv­ered.  We’ll con­tinue to high­light other trends we see com­ing down the pike over the next few weeks, so stay tuned.

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