No one likes to rely on other people for help. There’s something empowering about solving our own problems – we get to do it our way and without taking time away from someone else. No wonder the vast majority of customers try to solve a problem themselves before reaching out for help.
Here’s what to know about self-service.
Self-Service is About Control and Empowerment
Customers want to feel in control of their experience with a brand, especially given the shift to virtual and remote experiences in the wake of covid-19. That means your organization needs to anticipate customer needs and provide a seamless response that puts customers in the driver’s seat.
You can do that by:
- Creating comprehensive instructions and FAQs. An intuitive experience is the first step in customer satisfaction. Create products and services that are easy to navigate, then buttress that experience with great instructions, tips, and informative answers to common questions. This will provide an avenue for customers to resolve challenges on their own before reaching out to you.
- Providing multiple contact channels. Give customers a choice over how they get in touch – after all, for many, the phone is the last result. In-app experiences, web chat, or text-based relays and menus are all options that will appeal to different subsets of consumers. Providing different contact options lets a customer feel that they’re taking charge of the experience.
- Devising seamless self-service options for common experiences. Understanding intent is key to developing powerful self-service options. Use data to understand when, how, and why customers are calling, then create flows that simplify those tasks. For example, if you’re a credit card company, you know when customers will be receiving their new cards. When you send these out, don’t feed customers through a complex IVR phone menu. Provide a unique phone number or one-tap app option customers can use to activate their new card.
Provide Back-ups – and Access to Real People
Self-service has to be simple and intuitive. Customers don’t want to listen through an extensive list of phone options filled with multiple branching options. They want to quickly state their problem and be connected to the service or person who can resolve their issue.
AI, data analytics, and pre-call systems are vital for helping identify what your user is likely to be calling about and allow you to finesse your systems and train your staff to anticipate particular calls. Always provide input backups both for accessibility and usability purposes. Voice recognition has come a long way but can still be a frustrating experience for many – and can also be an accessibility issue for the deaf and hard of hearing.
It’s also important to have well-trained reps at the ready to step in when a problem turns out to be an exception or where self-service options aren’t providing the quick resolution expected. Having access to friendly, experienced customer service staff will help turn around any negative sentiment arising from an unsuccessful self-service attempt.
Let ACD Power Your Self-Service Functionality
At ACD, we’re all about empowerment – for your organization and your customers. Our all-in-one cloud-based platform provides powerful AI-backed analytics to help you streamline every aspect of your customer service, and our on-demand pool of experienced representatives ensures that you’re never short-staffed. With automatic call distribution, multi-channel support, real-time analytics, and smart integrations, we’ve got what you need to help put customers back in the driver’s seat of their own customer experience. To experience the ACD difference, get in touch today!