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Trends in Service Part 1: Customer Experience is Your Ace in the Hole or What Makes YOU Better Than the Others?

As the leading company in the field with 10+ years of experience in various industries and organizations, we follow the changes in our field closely, adapt them and help our customers grow and improve accordingly.

In the coming weeks, we will share the trends that are revolutionizing our sphere and workplace. Let’s jump right in with the first installment –

Part 1: Customer Experience is Your Ace in the Hole or What Makes YOU Better Than the Others?

It is almost cliché at this point to continue bringing up covid as a catalyst for workforce changes and customer interactions, but the fact is, clichés became clichés for a reason – they are usually true.

This “new post-covid world” we live in, is in fact a different world from that we experienced only three years ago. With the majority of businesses and services going online, the customers’ interaction was reduced to digital measures, with lower attention span, patience, and higher expectations. We are now able to conduct ourselves completely online – shopping, education, banking, exercise and communication have been completely transformed, so how can we expect our customer interactions to stay the same.

While the basic key customer satisfaction contributors stay the same and include quick resolutions, helpful and empathetic agents, 24/7 support, being able to use preferred channels, proactive support and one agent throughout the process, they are not enough to answer your customers’ needs and expectations. The “new world” also requires you to be quick, and in many cases, to be self-sufficient and help them solve the problem themselves and the most important part – create the best EXPERIENCE for your customers from A to Z.

It is the “twist” you need to consider when strategizing your customers’ journey and interaction with your business. It is not just about buying a bottle of wine anymore, but also including a vineyard tour (on or offline), your audience getting involved in winemaking, becoming an authority in the field, or supporting environmentally conscious wineries.

It requires creative, bold, rich content and human interactions to create bonds and trust and inspire the sorts of unique experiences that will resonate personally.

This is especially true among millennials and Gen Z’s, who believe in enjoying experiences rather than owning a service or product, which may be attributable to their relatively lower purchasing power, social distancing, and use of technology from an early age compared to older generations.

How did we get to this point?

Social distancing pushed customers online, upping digital channels’ share of transactions by +36% between 2019 and 2021.

The things we consume online have expanded to include not only work or school but also gym visits and religious services. We become hybrid, whether we were ready or not.
Today you can purchase not only food, clothes and perfume via the internet, but you can purchase a car, and depending on where you are in the world, you may even have it delivered to your door.

Even when in-person options are opening again, we prefer to do many things online. [1]

So, what can we see in the business world around us is that the changes are here and require us to do better – 88% of customers say the experience a company provides is as important as its product or services [2], 36% will walk away from a brand they love after a single unpleasant experience [3] and 86% will pay more for better customer service [4], and last but not least, 43% of customers prefer non-digital channels, meaning, satisfying customers generally require great experiences both on and offline.

The numbers speak for themselves, and they paint an obvious picture – you need to make the experience you provide count.

The Importance of Self Service

A big part of the experience that customers expect today, is Self Service. 73% of consumers, reported that they are very satisfied with the engagement, information, and assistance provided by chatbots and virtual assistants, often more so than the customer service provided by actual humans [5], much like in the “real world” where ATMs, self-order stations in restaurants and self-service in the gas station are the preferred methods of use.

How can you move forward?

Well, every company has different capabilities, budget, and focus, but here are our recommendations for a better, more efficient customer experience:

  • Use Chatbots (with NLP capabilities if possible) – Chatbots can immediately answer FAQs for customers, resulting in fewer cases logged for support agents to resolve, they reduce wait times and efficiently redirect inquiries to the right agent and collect leads.  
  • Implement a knowledge database– by providing How-To videos, FAQ pages and articles, you arm your customers with much-needed tools to help themselves and reduce frustration and wait time.
  • Automation – you already know so much about your customers, why not use it to provide a faster more personalized experience? For example, send them reminders regarding upcoming appointments, or remind them if they forgot to put bread in their cart
  • VR & AR – increase the experience by providing the customers with capabilities that will help everyone solve issues faster, for example, enable the customer to show, via video, their water leakage issue, to the agent.

Customer experience is vast and ever-changing. It requires investment both in creativity and funds but can be just the thing that makes a difference for your business.

Want to know more?

[1] Source: https://www.salesforce.com/resources/research-reports/state-of-the-connected-customer/

[2] https://www.salesforce.com/resources/research-reports/state-of-the-connected-customer/

[3] https://www.pwc.com/us/en/advisory-services/publications/consumer-intelligence-series/pwc-consumer-intelligence-series-customer-experience.pdf

[4] https://www.pwc.com/us/en/advisory-services/publications/consumer-intelligence-series/pwc-consumer-intelligence-series-customer-experience.pdf

[5] 1) https://acquire.io/blog/customer-service-trends/

   2) https://www.cadesignform.com/blog/customer-experience-trends-2022

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