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Customer Service is Key in the Customer Experience

It has become increasingly more common to hear that companies are focusing on the delivery of an excellent customer experience to each consumer, every single time. What is it about the “customer experience” that makes it so important? Typically, customer experience is defined as the entirety of the customer’s interactions with a supplier. Most think that “customer service” and “customer experience” are interchangeable but there is a definitive distinction. If a customer calls into customer service – then more often than not – something has gone wrong with their experience. However, customer service is a critical component of the experience that a customer has – it’s a key building block to increasing customer loyalty.

  • 70% of consumers are willing to spend more money with a company that provides good customer service (Echo Research, 2012)
  • 62% of global consumers switched service providers due to poor customer service experiences, up 4% from the previous year (Accenture Global Consumer Pulse Survey, 2013)
  • 36% of consumers will consider defecting after only two or three attempts to resolve their question (callcentres.net, 2011)
  • 82% of consumers say the number one factor that leads to a great customer service experience is having their issues resolved quickly. (LivePerson)

Today’s globally competitive marketplace offers more choices, making each interaction that much more important. When a customer calls into a company’s customer service there are two potential outcomes: the customer’s confidence in the product or service is renewed and brand loyalty is secured or resolution is not quickly achieved leading to customer churn.
Call center companies using the Arise® Platform have the unique opportunity to help create a personal, solution-oriented outcome which helps achieve the stellar customer experience clients aim to provide. Here are some best practices that make world-class support providers really stand out from the rest:

  1. Exceed customer expectations. Show a relentless commitment to exceeding, not just meeting, expectations. Customers can’t tell you how to exceed their expectations, but they know it when they see it, they remember, and they tell their friends.
  2. Become the expert in providing world class customer service. To achieve this, you will have to research and implement industry best practices and trends that impact world class customer service. Focus on the low-hanging fruit – the best ideas that will have the greatest impact with the most minimal investment. Finally, to gauge your company’s progress benchmark its performance against other vendors and make continuous improvement and on-going initiative!
  3. Train every worker in your company to be a customer service champion. Reinforce the tools, equipment and support they must have to deliver excellent service consistently. Remember to coach your agents on an on-going basis and be balanced and timely with your feedback. Whether you catch your worker doing something right or incorrectly, providing feedback in a timely manner is key to reinforce the desired behaviors.
  4. Remove barriers to delivering world-class customer service. Look at the systems, existing policies, procedures, and reports. Items that are unnecessary and only create challenges should be removed. Instead, you should focus on building a solutions-oriented culture – one where each worker is motivated to make use of all available resources to delight each customer.
  5. Lead by the example. It’s easy to coach others to adapt desired behaviors, but even the best leaders will be unsuccessful if they don’t practice what they preach. The concept of “shadow of the leader” depicts that workers will take cues from their leadership as to what is acceptable behavior – prompt and effective problem resolution, effective communication skills, professional business practices – none of these will come to life in your organization if you don’t demonstrate them yourself.

According to the Temkin Group, their research finds that 84% of companies expect to increase their focus on the metrics and measurements that drive a successful customer experience, because when that happens the ROI (return on investment) is customer loyalty.

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