Over the past decade, web-based customer service has seen a huge surge in popularity, with automated communication chatbots becoming increasingly prevalent in B2C businesses. These systems can often cost a company less when compared to phone support or manned digital support, however, where there is no live human interaction, the disadvantages of computer-based systems can largely outweigh the savings.
A whopping 67% of customers are willing to pay extra to receive great customer service, so the cost savings of automation don’t always make sound commercial sense in the long run. Digitised customer service presents many advantages to a business, but the technology hasn’t come far enough to be relied upon as the sole source of support. As a result, it may create a negative customer perception and cause your business reputational damage.
Despite a huge increase in email and chat communication, phone calls, on average still account for 50% of all customer service interaction. In some instances, it can still be as high as 80%.
Whilst the advantages of digital transformation are well documented, human-based customer service remains the best way to drive life-long loyalty among customers. Here’s how.
Why Phone-Based Communication is Still Vital
More Effective Communication
We’ve all been in a situation where we’ve wanted to be quickly connected to a human on the phone. Many companies now make customers jump through hoops to speak to an advisor when, in reality, a customer is really looking for a ‘first call’ or ‘first contact’ resolution and may feel that conversation will achieve that.
Whether it be a long-winded online conversation or an AI chatbot interaction that provides little value, the end result of prolonging a negative customer experience is frustration.
Customers themselves will choose the channel of communication that suits them best.
What’s more, customers who are trying to get in touch with someone with a complaint will be frustrated, to begin with, and look for a quick fix. A poorly worked digital system is only likely to exacerbate their problem.
Giving your customers the opportunity to use the communication channel of their choice is vital for quick resolutions and makes the customer feel far more appreciated. This builds brand trust and loyalty.
Not All Customers are Comfortable with Digital Communication
Depending on your business, some customers may not be comfortable with digital communication. Older customers or those whose first language isn’t English may struggle to communicate online and feel neglected. This is particularly likely if your only form of customer service is web-based, and their only option to contact you is via email, social media, or web-chat.
Human Customer Service Offers A Personal Touch
What are the qualities of a great customer service advisor? A good listener? Empathetic? Conscientious? Respectful? We would say a combination of all of these positive human qualities is important.
Even if you have a human typing on the other end of the conversation, there is a challenge in that they can’t convey their emotional reaction using their tone of voice. Communication via web-chat can often feel cold or blunt, and it makes it difficult for a customer to establish any form of rapport with the advisor. We invest heavily in staff training so that our people understand the nuance of online customer service and how to build rapport, confidence, and trust through non-verbal exchanges.
Keep it Personal with Bespoke
No matter how much your business expands, it’s crucial to provide professional customer service that makes customers feel appreciated and listened to. The only way to do this is to offer multi-platform communication that is actively managed by well-trained and enthusiastic people. Our onboarding process is designed specifically to help you match onshore service levels whilst simultaneously slashing your costs.
Our culture of excellence has been created by our understanding of customer needs and advisor training. Exceptional phone-based customer service, empathetic online support, and engaging chat skills will set the very best tone for your business. If you’d like to explore a cost-effective offshoring customer service option that rivals the quality of an in-house team, get in touch.
Email us at [email protected] We’d love to hear from you.