Creating the best customer experience possible can be quite difficult to achieve if you never see the face of your customers. This is a challenge that most online businesses face when they attempt to improve the way they handle their leads and customers. There are a lot of factors to consider and, in some situations, “improvements” end up not being well appreciated with customers (at least not at first).
Still, if business trends are any indication, change is eminent and well under way. Internet users are not really known for their patience and they tend to abandon any and all endeavours if the information or service is not instantly available to them. This is why a lot of online businesses are relying on automation solutions to help them manage their customers at all times and improve their services.
Moreover, the benefits of automation are two-fold. It both improves the customer experience and saves money for the business in question. According to Gardner, as many as 85% of customer relationships won’t involve a human agent. If we focus on the now, we find that as many as 50% of all interactions with customers will be based on real-time analytics provided by automation tools.
Here are five of the most effective ways to automate processes and improve the customer experience while freeing your human-agents so that they can handle complex tasks that only a human can handle.
1. Automated Customer Query Responses
One of the biggest annoyances for all customers is not getting a timely response to a query and being bounced from one agent to another with waiting times in between. A lot of people will simply rage-quit in this situation and attempt to get what they need from a competitor. As many as 91% of all customers that get this treatment will never again willingly do business with the brand in question. This is where automated responses, prepared beforehand, come in handy. This can be done for all forms of instant chatting, emails and any other form of textual contact. Consider it as an extended FAQ document from which your automation software can draw answers from and pass them onto your customers. Quick, clean and efficient.
2. Personalised Customer Experience
Automation software can be set up to gather crucial information about customers – previous purchases, browsing habits, abandoned carts, viewed products, etc. This kind of information can be used as a basis for creating personalised digital journeys through intelligent automation, specially targeted marketing campaigns and other approaches. On the customer’s side of things, this creates an impression of finding exactly what you are looking for every time you land on the site. It’s like magic, except it’s not magic – it’s automation.
3. The Chatbot Revolution
Chatbots are not a new thing but they have evolved over time and, nowadays, they have amazing capabilities. According to Zdnet, two out of three customers can’t tell if they are chatting with a bot or a human even though they would prefer the latter. This doesn’t mean that you should mislead them on purpose but it shows how far chatbots have come. Today, they are able to engage customers and guide them through their entire journey without a hitch. They are also present across all social media platforms as well as messaging apps.
4. Social Media Syncing
The omni-channel approach is here to stay and a lot of businesses are having trouble maintaining a consistent quality of interaction with users on all channels. Automation software can help with this through post scheduling, engagement alerts, and post success reports. This helps businesses be at the right place at the right time and avoid losing potential leads due to their resources being stretched too thin.
After some time working in customer support, you know the majority of questions the customer is going to ask. The help desk can manage a much bigger workload if they have a prepared database of answers that agents can tap into in cases of recurring problems. This way, they can focus on helping customers that have more complex problems and resolve them without putting the customer on hold. The combination of a knowledge base along with an automated ticketing service can streamline the process of resolving issues as well as allow customers to resolve issues themselves without any help.
Automation is all about getting things done without the need for a massive workforce that you need to organise. This approach is still evolving and is going to get better over time, but it is already in an applicable stage. These were just superficial examples of the most popular way to utilise automation processes and it is by no means easy to set up the best practices for a specific situation. Once in place, things tend to get easier really fast.