For some time now, companies have been offering more self-service opportunities to customers in search of quick and convenient experiences. Consumers in the digital landscape want faster response times, easier checkout processes, and more personalised interactions with companies. The demand for these new and enhanced experiences only accelerated with 2020 and the rise of Covid-19.
In the year of the pandemic, companies had to shut up shop and leave their customers to seek out the services and products they needed elsewhere. Online transactions, app-based conversations and live chat customer service increased at an incredible pace. Digital self-service is now a cornerstone of any convenient customer experience for companies worldwide.
Understanding the Demand for Digital Self Service
Even before the pandemic 67% of customers said that they prefer to use self-service options rather than speaking with a company representative. Additionally, around 85% of customers say that they’ll choose the self-service route above any other option.
We’re living in the age of the empowered customer, where your client can easily find all the information that they might need online to make an educated transaction without a lot of help from a service agent. Customers in this new landscape can research products, track down the best deal, and potentially find solutions to any problems they have on their own.
For today’s brands, self-service technology doesn’t just make your customers happy and allow you to solve problems faster, it also cuts costs too. You can reduce the amount of time and money you need to spend on labour hours when your employees only have to deal with the most complicated challenges themselves.
How Do Companies Build Effective Self Service?
Digital self service solutions aren’t a new concept, but they are something that every business will need to consider more carefully as we head into 2021 and beyond. Going forward, you’ll need to ensure that not only is your self-service system easy to use, but it’s fast and effective too, capable of dealing with various customer queries fast.
If you’re using chatbots and artificial intelligence to address customer concerns through a chat system on your website, then the conversations that these tools have with your customers need too be conversational. A greater investment in natural language understanding and sentiment analysis could be essential to building better customer experiences.
Additionally, there will be a growing demand for more advanced experiences offered by greater technology too. Customers will expect to have more realistic conversations with IVR systems in a contact centre when they want to get answers to questions. They may also start to look at things like augmented and virtual reality as tools for finding the best product on a shopping trip or troubleshooting common problems.
Delivering effective self-service in the digital age will mean that companies need to consider their customer’s journey carefully and invest in disruptive tools that will make that journey more convenient and streamlined, regardless of whether those clients have access to a service rep or not.