Today’s customers expect to have an opportunity to solve their issues before reaching out to a customer service agent. Around 89 percent of customers say they expect access to a self-service portal when dealing with everyday problems.
As your consumers become increasingly savvy in the digital world and more comfortable with the idea of using bots, automation, and intelligent tools to address issues, self-service is everywhere. The right tools don’t just delight customers either; they can also be a valuable way to keep your teams happy by giving them extra support in a hybrid world.
Today, let’s consider some of the most significant self-service trends pushing the evolution of the technology.
1. Rapid Cloud Adoption
The adoption of cloud technology is an integral part of the self-service revolution. With the cloud, companies can access all-in-one ecosystems for customer service, ready to scale up or down at the touch of a button. This trend makes it much easier to expand a self-service solution as your company’s time demands increase.
The cloud creates an environment where business leaders can control and transform their self-service efforts more efficiently. You might start with a simple chatbot solution, then gradually implement IVR technology with natural language processing with the help of the right vendor.
Cloud solutions also make it easier to align multiple data streams from self-service and other customer service environments within a CCaaS ecosystem. This provides a better overview of the customer journey and enhanced security, privacy, and compliance opportunities.
2. Rising Focus on Agent Experience
Issues like “The Great Resignation” prompt business leaders to think more carefully about how they attract and retain their most important staff members. Companies can’t afford to deal with vast levels of turnover at a time when customer demand levels are skyrocketing.
Fortunately, self-service solutions can allow organizations to implement more compelling experiences for agents.
First, with automated self-service systems like chatbots and FAQs, it’s possible to serve endless clients without the input of a human agent, saving specialists crucial time.
Secondly, self-service solutions also automate many tasks employees wouldn’t usually enjoy doing, like renewing subscriptions or dealing with commonplace issues.
Self-service solutions can also be implemented into the employee backend within a CCaaS environment, providing hybrid and remote workers with ways to troubleshoot and resolve common tech problems without waiting for IT support.
3. Creating an Omnichannel Service Environment
Today’s customers want to be able to interact with companies quickly and conveniently on the channels they like most. Around 71 percent of customers want brands to offer customer support over messaging, while many are also looking for video, audio, and SMS support.
Self-service solutions allow companies to stay on the cutting edge of the omnichannel revolution. You can implement self-service tools to support your customers in different environments, from chatbots on your website to instant-response SMS tools.
Companies can also use natural language processing algorithms to add self-service experiences to the standard calling experience. Or you can set up customer portals where customers can connect with bots and agents online and track support tickets. Self-service solutions open the door to a new selection of excellent opportunities for digital engagement.
4. Intelligent Automation
While some of the most popular forms of self-service in the CX landscape are the simplest, like FAQ articles and blog posts, others can be more advanced. Now that 69 percent of consumers are attempting to solve problems independently, saving support teams time, money, and resources, it makes sense to invest in more intelligent tools to empower your customers.
Intelligent automation solutions allow clients to complete more tasks on their own without the input of human agents. For instance, customers can renew subscriptions, make purchases, and even troubleshoot common tech problems with the help of an IVR or chatbot with natural language processing.
Following this self-service trend will reduce the strain on today’s customer service teams. It will also allow customers to feel more empowered and confident when using your products or services. The result is happier customers and a more efficient team.
5. Focused Privacy Measures
Intelligent automation tools also make it easier for companies to collect valuable information about the customer journey. The key for modern companies will be finding the right balance between collecting valuable data and adhering to the latest privacy guidelines.
By omitting personal details, your bots, and IVR systems can collect and store data without putting you at risk of compliance issues. Companies can set up policies for which information should be collected and even implement automated strategies for removing data from your database at a customer’s request, following GDPR rules.
It’s also possible to create more personalized experiences with bots by allowing tools to tap into information about previous purchases (with a customer’s permission) to offer more contextual assistance.
6. Augmented Customer Experiences
Finally, as self-service becomes increasingly popular, the way we empower customers to address their issues and accomplish tasks is changing. Increasingly, business leaders are beginning to experiment with a combination of AI and XR to offer next-level customer success and service experiences.
For instance, in the future, customers might be able to skip a complex onboarding process with an employee from a B2B team by putting on a VR headset and walking through the installation process for their new tools with a virtual assistant. AR and MR headsets could bring manuals to life and give users more guidance on troubleshooting common problems.
As XR technology grows more accessible and affordable, companies may start to invest in more tools for consumers who prefer to solve problems themselves with immersive content and guidance. There are already examples of VR and AR training solutions on the market.