Customer service is an area that can have a massive impact on how well a business does, yet because it takes up a lot of time and the results often aren’t particularly obvious, many entrepreneurs aren’t focused enough on it. Happily, though, there are all sorts of tech tools and programs these days that can help business owners and managers better service clientele without putting in quite so much time, energy, or other resources. Here are some ways you could consider using technology to improve customer service in your business in 2022.
Utilize live chat and chatbots
Live chat is a great way to streamline answering shopper queries. You can integrate a live chat function into your website so consumers can continue doing things online while they wait to connect with the next available member of your customer support team to ask their questions. This availability makes a lot of people happier than waiting to get a response via email or holding on the phone to wait for someone to be ready to help them.
A more advanced tech solution is a chatbot. This is the name used for computer programs that utilize artificial intelligence (AI) to converse with consumers based on inputted information. The chatbots can engage shoppers by asking, “Can I help you find something?” or similar, or answer common questions about your business, brand, or wares. If the chatbot cannot answer a query, it can transfer people to a live chat conversation with the support team.
Chatbots are great for saving your employees time and streamlining operations as simple questions can be answered automatically, leaving workers free to respond to more complex requirements.
Take advantage of SMS and email autoresponders
Many organizations use SMS marketing these days since texting campaigns can provide excellent returns on investment. Most people have their smartphones on or near them all day and respond to messages faster than other types of communications. You might like to consider this usage when it comes to offering customer support, too.
In particular, you could take advantage of trusted SMS autoresponders to do things such as remind people of appointments and get them to confirm or cancel as needed by simply replying with a yes or no, or thank them for leaving a review or making a purchase. SMS autoresponders can also be used to confirm a signup or send a welcome message or a sales follow-up communication.
Also, keep in mind that email autoresponders are very handy. Many email marketing tools, including popular ones like GetResponse, have simple-to-use autoresponders so you can set up emails to automatically send out to your database or customers in certain situations. For instance, this can be to answer common questions about your products or services, to upsell or cross-sell people, or trigger them to write a review or refer your business to one of their contacts.
Another way to save your customer service team some time is to find ways to enable self-service so shoppers can help themselves rather than wait to get assistance from your employees. People want responses ASAP these days, so if you set up systems so they can find answers or complete tasks by themselves, this will make them happy and save your business time and money to boot.
For example, in addition to the chatbots mentioned above, you can create forums, tutorials, and videos full of information about your wares or how to use your services, etc., so people can find the details they need when they need it. You might set up automated help desks, enable over-the-phone and online payments, and develop Instant Answers and Dynamic FAQs, where people can type in questions and get information shown on screen that hopefully answers their queries.
Shoppers can use these types of self-service setups at any time of the day or night, so they don’t have to wait for general office hours to get a response. This makes them more likely to go ahead with a transaction and less likely to get frustrated with your organization.
These are just a few ways to use technology to improve customer service. You might also use customer relationship management tools to trigger staff reminders to follow up with purchasers who have complained of an issue with your wares and ensure complaints are resolved. Or, use these tools to see if people need to stock up again on a product or get help with a service. Plus, use tech tools to automate messages to buyers about when their orders get shipped and provide tracking numbers, expected delivery dates, etc.
You can use big data to track, manage, and analyze consumer behavior at numerous touchpoints. Get a better understanding of who’s buying from you, when, and how they shop, as well as the open rates of your emails and newsletters, where people click through to your website from, and more. If you’re not using any or all of these technologies in your business today, it’s time to start testing some out and seeing which can help your venture thrive over the coming years.
Photo credit: The feature image has been done by Opolja.