58% of American consumers say that they will switch companies because of poor customer service.
As the year 2020 unraveled, businesses struggled with a constant influx of customer complaints. Brands faced a wide range of disruptions to their operations. Customer service departments were forced to adapt quickly to uncertain situations and were tested like never before.
58% of American consumers say that they will switch companies because of poor customer service.
As we look further ahead to the customer service trends of 2021, we can expect organizations to continue ramping up their services for a vastly different world. The future of customer support is the future of your business, after all. Customer service techniques and trends determine your business growth. Businesses that don’t adapt to a higher standard of customer service ultimately risk their future.
Hence, it is time to revamp customer service trends to stay with a good rapport in the current market. With that being said, we bring you an exhaustive guide with trending customer service techniques that’ll help ramp up your overall business standards.
Today, most customer service operation technology is still not savvy enough for customers to avoid the difficulty of the old phone call methods. The current customer experience landscape is ripe for disruption. Although businesses are slowly making progress towards seamless and simpler customer service, the pace is not fast enough compared to the customer demand.
For a brand in 2021, being reactive isn’t enough; companies need to be proactive. They need to utilize emerging trends and technologies. This is easier said than done. By leveraging these customer support trends, many companies are indeed making giant leaps in customer service.
Most companies nowadays use technological tools at their fingertips to enable better customer interaction. But is that enough? Customers prefer self-service but will call you for complex matters. If you’re not providing any of the two, you lose customers. Let’s look at other such trends.
We stand at an awkward inflection where few companies are at the forefront of customer experience while a few are still struggling with the basics. Following are eight customer service techniques that’ll help you gain a competitive edge in the 2021 market and take your business to another level.
The most basic that customers expect from brands is that their problems are addressed carefully. Listening is also important because it enables agents to summarize their problems carefully and find the core of the issue. Doing so ensures that customers feel their issue is understood and that they are heard.
Your body posture strongly influences your ability to listen. Present yourself as an active listener to your customers. While talking on the phone, use some common listening indicators like “Okay,” “Yes,” “I see,” etc. while the customer is speaking. It shows the customers that you’re still with them.
At the end of the call or chat, paraphrase and explain to the speaker briefly what you’ve just heard, in slightly different words. It gives clarity and shows the speaker you’ve understood their problems.
Customers also expect you to respond to them as quickly as possible. The ideal time for the first response is usually 24 hours. Doing so ensures that the customer feels their issue is understood and addressed. The ability to communicate adequately is a top job skill for customer service employees. Agents need to be clear and brief about the next steps that will help solve their issues.
Agents need to constantly tell the customers that their issue is understood and acknowledged. This helps create a mutual understanding with the customers and helps establish a better customer relationship. It also makes it easier for both parties to receive the information they need.
One of the greatest customer service techniques is to remain calm even when responding to an angry customer. Tone can be hard to decipher over live chat and text. Therefore, choosing your words carefully is an essential customer service technique as well. A good tone? Keep it as gentle and informative as possible regardless of the channel you’re using to interact with the customer.
The functionality of customer service chatbots is constantly expanding as we speak. Chatbot-powered services are here to stay, and this year we will witness its evolution and expansion.
In 2019, for 43% of U.S. online shoppers, chatbots were the most preferred communication channel. Since then, chatbots quickly went from an optional service tool to a must-have for every business customer support. It provides real-time support and makes it easy for customers to solve their queries. Following are some of the benefits and use cases of live chatbots:
Personalization is yet another popular customer service technique. Give a personalized touch to your support. Customers do not want to feel like they’re conversing with a robot. While it is important to use certain templates and canned responses, you can make a small difference by addressing them with their name.
Think of your templates as guidelines. For instance, the templates can provide a helpful structure for common responses. For example, a common structure of step-by-step responses. But make sure that they aren’t overly rigid and unwavering. Agents must be able to personalize their answers before replying to customers. This leads to a more personal, improved interaction—and more fulfilling customer service.
With 67% of customers using various channels like live chat, social media, and so on, good customer service now means responding to queries through these channels in an appropriate manner.
While soft skills like empathy, the ability to read a customer’s emotional state, and friendliness remain important, agents need additional skills as well. Each customer service channel benefits from a unique set of skills. Below mentioned are some channel-specific customer service techniques:
The agents solving queries through the phone need to keep their tone in check. While handling phone support, it’s important to remember to listen first and then validate their problems. You can mirror the customer’s language and tone unless it is angry and/or impatient. Once they’re done explaining their problems, acknowledge them, summarize their problem and proceed accordingly.
A good customer service technique while providing email support is personalization. Keep the emails personal yet structured and precise. Be specific while describing how you’ll help and make the email brief yet informative. Add links to any possible resources that might inform or help the customers. Perform thorough proofreading and spellcheck as well.
If you are providing live chat support, it requires a cross of phone and email skills. Chat is conversational and real-time, just like customer service over the phone, but it requires strong writing skills.
When live chat is not available, customers may turn to social media for a faster response. Hence, you must ensure that you respond quickly. Acknowledge publically that you’re following up with them. React carefully to confrontation and use a gentle, informative tone.
Knowledge means power. The better your customer support teams understand your products, the better they will help others use the products. And they’ll be able to solve their issues faster. This also shines a light on product training. Brands must focus on product training and it must be a key part of onboarding processes and regular refreshers when updates and new releases happen.
Omnichannel is perhaps one of the most trending customer service techniques in 2021. Simply defined, omnichannel customer support is a strategy that combines all customer communication interaction points – social media, emails, meetings, etc. – to provide people with a consistent and unified brand experience. It is yet another customer service technique to improve your brand retention.
Statistics show that 47% of consumers admit using three to five different communication channels to get in touch. 90% of customers expect a consistent brand experience across all channels. Omnichannel solutions allow you to streamline your communication process through a single unified channel and saves time and labor.
In an omnichannel setting, you can offer a consistent customer experience regardless of the channel or touchpoint. It also ensures that agents can easily share context and notes about the customer’s previous interactions. The biggest benefit of omnichannel is that it entirely integrates into your customer portal. Hence, you do not have to jump between siloed channels or redirect to various platforms to send emails —it’s all right there.
Nowadays, companies use various customer service tools and techniques to gain a competitive edge and win over the customers. Businesses need to make sure that they do not miss out on even a single customer.
Customer support has also expanded its demands; it is not just about resolving customer queries. Businesses constantly need to look out for trends and roadblocks and analyze them. They need analytics and reporting from time to time to be better prepared for the future. Many brands use self-service portals and knowledge bases to reduce the workload of their agents. As discussed above, live chat is the bare minimum.
Hence, adopting a technological tool that lets you do all this from a single unified interface is utterly necessary. Worry not! We have a tool that can help you do all this seamlessly.
DeskXpand is an exceptional help desk management software that helps businesses provide quick resolutions to their customers and simplify their support. Functional experts and developers build it with certifications in their respective fields. It is a fully automated, omnichannel solution that caters to all types of business needs. It is a one-stop, fit-for-all solution to all your support needs and serves small to large businesses.
It helps businesses reduce high-cost, laborious, and redundant data-entry tasks. It also helps you follow all the customer service techniques mentioned above and makes it easier for you to provide seamless customer service. It lets you integrate multiple third-party tools as well.
Here are some of the prominent features of DeskXpand:
Easily group, sort, and filter the incoming query tickets using filter combinations for quick and easy access to the information within the system.
DeskXpand provides you with a simple, intuitive, and integrated mechanism for managing support tickets. It gives your team accountability, improves transparency, and ensures effective communication. Some other ticket management features are automatic ticket importing, automatic ticket assignment, ticket notifications, etc.
Managing a shared team inbox that processes customer requests, manages tickets and suggestions is the central function of a help desk ticketing system. DeskXpand shared inboxes let the agents comment or chat within the tickets.
DeskXpand has an integrated shared inbox, which is automated and collaborative. You can practice role-based access and permissions. It provides shared ownership that gets everyone involved. You can let your agents know and view if someone else is viewing or replying to the ticket through collision detection features. Your agents can also merge similar tickets to minimize redundant efforts.
DeskXpand provides omnichannel features to let your staff engage with your customers across channels of their choice, from one unified interface. It lets you set up well-orchestrated workflows across email, phone, social media, and so on.
Leverage multiple channels to respond readily and increase your sales opportunities. It helps your agents save time and reduce repetitive work. This also brings down the overall cost and accelerates your efficiency.
DeskXpand helps you solve customer issues while viewing everything you need in one place. You can view everything on a unified dashboard and then guide your team and operations. With DeskXpand, you can avoid juggling between various tools and accounts. Your agents can answer emails, calls and chat from one place.
DeskXpand helpdesk software helps you measure your team performance and analyze the areas of improvement. It helps you understand customer behavior and later helps you make data-driven decisions.
With large-scale customer data metrics, you can gain actionable insights. This way, you can get a complete 360-degree view of your support performance. Later with the help of this data, you can evaluate your strategy to design better customer experiences. You can also use this data to predict the behavior of prospective clients.
DeskXpand has dynamic timers that let you configure various timers to maintain the ticket timeline. It has service level agreements and escalation rules that can be set up and modified based on their real-world performance.
It lets you apply due dates, response time, routing workflows, and so on, automatically, based on your service level agreements (SLAs). You can enable automatic hierarchical escalations and enforce issue prioritization. This helps in reducing the overall delay. It also helps in keeping the customer involved at every stage of their ticket lifecycle.
DeskXpand helpdesk software provides a shared inbox for team collaboration that enables resolving customer queries faster. It is important to enable collaboration within the team. If your agents cannot collaborate effectively, that might lead to chaotic and unnecessary communication.
DeskXpand automation features help reduce high-cost, laborious, and redundant data-entry tasks. Automation reduces laborious manual tasks, simplifies your work, and lowers your support costs.
It helps you improve efficiency and helps your agents focus on resolving complex customer issues. You can automate processes like workflows, ticket import and assignment tasks, SLAs, ticket status updating, notifications, escalations, and other such processes. Automation also reduces customers’ irrelevant interaction with the support agents. For example, you can automate the initial few steps of complaint registration and redirect customers to relevant agents.
DeskXpand is fully customizable, adaptable, and convenient. It lets you customize your help desk fully and provide a cohesive brand experience to your customers. Customization enables you to connect with your targeted audience on a personal level. It lets you scale and personalize your data based on roles, categories, and preferences.
DeskXpand lets you create an extensive knowledge base to help your customers help themselves. Get more website traffic using a customized knowledge base and mark your brand as informative and resourceful.
It helps you lessen the burden on your agents. It also prevents them from answering the same questions again and again. You can also get more website traffic by optimizing your knowledge base with SEO-friendly content and present your brand as informative and resourceful.
Our helpdesk software lets you solve customer queries by quickly acknowledging the incoming tickets. Your agents can then work to provide an effective solution.
So, this was all about various customer service approach techniques to optimize your customer support. These trends are currently ranking in 2021 and are here to stay with us in the future. Hence, it would be judicious to invest in relevant customer service tools and techniques to lead your brand through these requirements.
We are an ISO27001 certified customer service portal development company with 14+ years of development experience. We build products that you can customize according to your present and future needs. Functional experts and developers build DeskXpand with certifications in their respective fields. We would like to showcase how our product works effectively for your business. Start your trial now and find out more.