Customer Service Automation is the provision of customer service support across digital channels to nurture customer interactions. It’s one of the areas of Digital Transformation (What is Digital Transformation?) where businesses need to adopt digital technology to transform their customer service solutions.
These channels can include anything from receiving a text update on your courier to - emails, social media, video chat, artificial intelligence (AI) and automated solutions (e.g. live chat and chatbots on websites). There are 6 benefits that chatbots can have for a business that's looking for a digital customer service approach - one of them being that it offers customers 24/7 support for any questions they may have on a product or service.
With today’s ever-changing customer demands, businesses now have a platform to reach out to them through their digital channels to improve customer interactions and enhance their experience. In this blog, we’ll walk you through why you need to switch to a digital approach and the 5 tips you need to deliver a smashin’ strategy for your customer service automation.
Why Do You Need Customer Service Automation?
Customers nowadays are barely communicating across traditional channels. Gone are the days of face-to-face interactions and waiting for hours on a call to speak to a customer service rep. All you have to do now is reach out to brands through mobile apps and web communication channels to get a solution to your query.
1. Customers want to be communicated in a way that suits them
Customers are constantly reaching out to you on digital channels for a real-time, personalised solution to their problems. Businesses need efficient and optimised multi-channel support strategies to significantly improve customer satisfaction, to make sure customers can contact you in the way they prefer most. For example, millennials prefer live chat for customer service over every other communication channel. Check out this comment from one of the millennials in our H&D team:
“Take this as an example of why it’s good - I didn’t receive my booking confirmation from Air NZ for my trip to Wellington and instead of waiting on hold to speak to a customer service rep, I simply messaged them on Facebook and had my confirmation email sent to me in mere minutes!”
2. Customers value excellent customer service
It’s the responsiveness and convenience that customer service automation offers that consumers truly value. According to HubSpot research, 93% of customers are likely to make repeat purchases with companies that offer excellent customer service. So it goes without saying that if you’re dropping the ball with poor customer service, it’s likely you won’t see those customers again.
3. Increase your competitive edge
Other businesses are also competing to win the hearts of your customers - so it pays to deliver unique experiences across your digital channels to stay ahead of the competition. A recent Walker study found that customer experience is set to overtake price and product as the biggest brand differentiator, so your customer service offering could be the key to increasing your slice of the market.
To find out more about why customer service automation is so important for a business, we spoke with our CRM Lead, Kristen Pak, to get her take on the matter:
"Firstly, it allows you to reach your customers faster and with a one-to-many ratio - like one blog post reaching thousands of your audience.
Customer service automation gives you feedback from your customers through emails or surveys that allow you to grow your products and services, help your customer service and scale up your business.
A digital platform already has your statistics for reporting and analysing how your team needs to grow and what your customers need. It will speed up the process by automating personalised messages to save time that you can focus on other tasks at hand."
The Benefits of Going Digital With Your Customer Service
From offering customers convenient solutions to increasing sales and building customer satisfaction and loyalty, businesses stand to benefit lots from customer service automation - but so do customers! Below, we look at the key benefits that it offers businesses and their customers:
- Supports your customer service team to resolve issues more efficiently
- Saves your team from spending time on repetitive tasks that can otherwise be automated
- Provides you with data that you can use to analyse and identify pain points for potential opportunities
- Reaches your customers in their preferred way and helps turn happy customers into brand advocates
- Gives them a quick, convenient, responsive and personalised solution to their problems
- They don’t have to spend hours on end for waiting in a call centre queue
- Shows that they care about their customer, instilling higher customer satisfaction, brand loyalty and trust
Now that you have seen the massive benefits that awesome customer service automation can bring to a business and its customers, finding a good platform that helps you deliver it is important. We asked Kristen for her perspective on how HubSpot’s Service Hub has helped us deliver a good customer service solution for our clients. Here’s what she had to say:
"The insight you can get from sales is invaluable for customer service - knowing what product or service they purchased and how many times they bought it so that you know if they’re a loyal customer or not.
It helps us easily onboard new customers and provide flexible customer service to build a long-lasting relationship with them. Service Hub allows you to automate lots of things on the customer service side - like personalising marketing emails that trigger as soon as someone submits a form or finishes the sales cycle."
Say you’ve found a good platform, what next? Having a plan of action is just as important, or if not more, as having the right tools to do it. A customer service automation strategy helps you set out the foundations of what you’re trying to achieve and provides you with the analysis to make improvements.
5 Tips For Developing a Customer Service Automation Strategy
To have a successful digital presence, you first need to have a well thought out plan of action. There have to be processes in place to deal with the different demands of different customers. So to help you with that, we’ve come up with 5 noteworthy tips to keep in mind when creating a customer service strategy.
1. Understand the importance of the customer experience
Customer experience is a crucial aspect of attracting new customers, keeping existing ones happy, improving your revenue and increasing customer loyalty and retention.
2. Align your customer service strategy with your business goals
Integrate your customer service strategy into your overarching business strategy to ensure everyone is aligned with your business model and the end goal you want to deliver.
3. Update training modules for the customer support team
Ensure your customer data is up to date with all the best tactics and strategies to deal with customer enquiries. Communicate your expectations and investigate ways to improve your service team’s satisfaction.
4.Provide your customer support team with essential tools to do the job
Find out what tools you’ll need to avoid complexity and streamline tasks. An integrated solution like a CRM can reduce the time your team spends on navigating multiple tools and more time to focus on helping your customers - which then leads to a better customer experience.
5. Identify ways to improve your customer service
Develop a methodology to constantly improve your customer service tactics and strategies across new support platforms.
Just before you start, we thought you might like some advice on how to create a customer service strategy. So who better to ask than Kristen? We asked her to share her expertise and advice on how to create a successful customer service strategy.
What’s The Best Advice You Can Give To Build a Customer Service Strategy?
"Understand the tools you need and what your technology does and doesn’t do, what do you need it to do and if there is a solution that can integrate across the entire business. Know your product and approach it with a holistic view - so the more customer service automation tools you set up (live chat, chatbots, email, etc), the more exposure you have for your customers to reach you.
Review your service process once every 6 months, if not more, as customers can change in terms of what they need and what they want. And finally, talk to us - become a client of Hype & Dexter and we can transform your customer service!"
- Kristen Pak, CRM Lead Hype & Dexter
Customer service automation sounds good right now - doesn’t it? If you’re looking to service your customers better, talk to Hype & Dexter… What have you got to lose?
We’ll understand your customers, set you up with a conversation tool, automate your service processes and implement tools to help you get valuable customer feedback. So what are you waiting for? Get in touch with us today.