Customer support services have become a necessary part of various business activities across the globe, predominantly when it comes to the service industry. With the rapidly evolving technology wave influencing daily business practices, customer support services, in particular, are experiencing major changes. Ideals and scenarios that seemed impossible to achieve are now in our grasp and thus becoming widely available.
To further facilitate our claim, let us shed light on some important aspects of development in the customer support industry based on technological advancements.
Real-time messaging is rapidly taking over
With the continuous connectivity to the internet and the facilitating mediums, customers expect companies to be available to cater to their concerns 24/7. Chatting generally seems much easier when compared to drafting a formal email draft or calling representatives which might take considerable time and effort.
With the advancements in technology like the undisrupted availability of mobile data, you can respond to your clients on the go. Companies like Facebook even give you an estimate response time by various entities so you have a good idea when your query will be entertained. Not only that, recent advancements have made it easier for specific departments to be reached out directly. Cox, for instance, offers real-time customer service to their clients to resolve their issues instantaneously. Therefore, being a customer, you no longer have to go through exasperating communication strings to be heard. Future communication developments will all be focused on real-time messaging practices to facilitate customers as well as companies in generating good PR.
Synchronous communication is important in the modern day world and it is vital for the success of any business to be able to adapt to it. Your communication through various mediums needs to be timely and precise in order to succeed.
The role of AI is increasing
The first thing that often comes to mind when we talk about AI is robots capable of taking over the world (as the Terminator movies series taught us). But the actuality is quite different as you can imagine. Bots and programs facilitated by Artificial Intelligence can help reduce our workload and make our tasks much more efficient.
We know how redundant it can get in customer service departments when a single phrase or scenario is to be explained over and over again. Bots can readily help you with automated queries while AI helps in tailoring answers and responses towards various clients. The talks regarding machine learning and AI involvements have just begun as companies have actively started taking interest in the future potential of these technologies. Human representatives in future will only have to handle the difficult/curved areas of client interaction where they might have to close the deal/query. The rest could very well be handled by AI.
This AI and bot involvement allows companies to allocate their resources more effectively and therefore allows them to take on a bigger client base with minimal hassle, without the looming worries of boring your employees and clients in the process.
Self-service is becoming a compulsion
Bots and AI discussed under the previous heading greatly facilitate self-service tasks. With the changing times, the general customer base is getting more educated. Increased knowledge offers a higher degree of autonomy as people become more able to carry out various tasks by themselves. Self-service facilities not only save more time but offer a sense of satisfaction as well.
Major businesses around the world like Amazon and Google are realizing the cost-cutting benefits that self-service offers. Their entire customer processes have been streamlined to offer autonomy to the customers and this also allows them to offer uniquely tailored experiences to their clients. Any company which fails to adapt to their advancements and changing dynamics will surely suffer in the eyes of their consumers (which will, in turn, lower their sales). For instance, how frustrating would it be if your favorite business requires you to send a proper email and wait for their reply (no matter how long it takes) to get things going? Incredibly annoying. Every practical self-service platform requires you to develop a formidable knowledge base over different mediums such as online platforms to help them learn faster. If the direction is on-point, then surely it becomes a matter of time before your customers start facilitating themselves through self-service.
Customer service is becoming more data-driven
Numbers speak volume; this is a rule that can never be neglected. No matter how successful you think your customer service is, you need numbers of justifying your success, not just for others but most importantly for your own success. As companies induct better technology into their customer service funnels, the need for analyzing large chunks of data is increasing by the day.
The data streams are getting larger by the day and with the active influx of all that data, companies require dedicated customer data analysts to make the most out of it. All these data chunks if analyzed properly offer new opportunities for business to cater to neglected customers as well as forming a better loyalty with the existing customer base.
Marketing strategies can benefit greatly from collected customer service data. New campaigns can be designed with respect to the customer needs and wants that will resultantly bring in better traction.
Social media interactions are becoming mandatory
The rise of social media platforms in the past decade or so is indeed commendable. What was perceived as mere dating tools have now become indispensable parts of our daily routines where almost every domain of life comes to visibility with high-speed internet as compared in the past? Customers can give feedback in real-time over social media platforms regarding what they think about certain brands and provide critical feedback. Since the advancing technology has opened the boundaries for social media engagements, companies need to present a good front and engage their audiences with the game faces on. Undermining the importance of such mediums would be destructive thus resulting in your competitors gaining the market edge that will eventually end up in their success.