How to make customer service more digital

Customers increasingly self-serve and use digital engagement channels for customer service both before and after purchase. It’s important that customer service organizations go digital and deliver context-driven interactions that precisely target visitors and customers at the right points in their journeys to educate and help them in their moments of need.
Written by Forrester Research, Contributor

Phone experiences are increasingly becoming suboptimal as more and more customer service journeys begin before customers pick up the phone. 

This is because most companies deploy their communication channels in silos, which means that: (1) Agents have no knowledge of the customer's prior digital interactions and (2) they cannot easily understand a customer's prior actions on their website before picking up the phone and cannot deliver contextual answers. Customers must restart the conversation with a live agent, repeating information that they have already communicated. 

Move your customers to digital channels by: 

  • Adding chat and co-browse to your digital properties. With minimal coding, you can give your customers the option to chat or co-browse on your website or mobile application. Display these options next to your phone number. Change voice agent scripts to allow them to educate customers about digital engagement options. 
  • Adding digital voice to your digital properties. Allow your customers to engage with you via digital voice from your website, mobile website, or app. Also, allow your customers to choose a convenient time for a call back. 
  • Bridging between voice and chat. When customers are queuing for an interactive voice response (IVR), offer them an option to chat with an agent. Customers receive a link via SMS and can click on the link to start a chat with an agent. Pass IVR data to the chat agent, allowing customers to restart the conversation where they left off. 
  • Reimagining processes to layer digital experiences onto the physical world. For example, an energy management company started attaching QR codes to its industrial products and released a free mobile app that lets its customers scan the code to schedule maintenance. Previously, the company estimated that it knew where approximately 15% of its equipment was installed. Now it has install data on more than 80% of its hardware. This not only improves customer service but also the company's understanding of its customer base. 

This post was written by VP and Principal Analyst Kate Leggett, and it originally appeared here

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