The spotlight was thrust this year on customer support as many industries struggled with a torrent of distressed calls from customers along with a range of operations related disruptions. Never before have support teams been tested and forced to adapt to rapidly changing situations so quickly. As we inch closer to the end of 2020, many are tuned in to the upcoming customer service trends for 2021 that are expected to be adopted into the new normal.
Technological innovations and updated marketing techniques have afforded companies with multiple ways to provide after-sales services to consumers. Live chat or video chats allow you to walk through the services and provide accurate information while maintaining a personalized approach that many consumers appreciate.
One of the most crucial customer service trends for 2021 is that customers, potential customers, and leads want instant satisfaction. We live in the Amazon era now, and if you can’t give us what we demand now, we will find someone that can. Instant gratification applies especially to your telephone calls. Someone needs to answer every single call. If you are not, you have three options depending on your needs:
By following an omnichannel set up as part of customer service trends for 2021, customers can reach you how they see fit. This can be through a traditional phone call, email, live chat, SMS, or social media correspondence.
Connect with your customers or potential customers through various channels. It’s getting more challenging to keep up with, but at a minimum, your customers should be able to reach you on:
- Company telephone
- The company’s Facebook page
- Facebook messenger
- Google Messenger (through Google My Business page)
Another example of continuing customer service trends for 2021 is the continuous utilization of chatbots to manage customer service. Its emergence and continued use allow for 24/7 support with the aid of automated replies. These replies are designed to immediately help consumers figure out the issue and then provide the necessary solutions even when actual humans aren’t around to answer.
A self-service portal is not a new concept. Still, more and more customers are demanding that all companies, even local service-based companies like landscapers, HVAC, plumbers, and maid services, offer a self-service portal. While this is one of the most significant customer service trends, every company should have a portal. A self-service site is not only convenient for your customers, but it allows your employees to do other things. With a self-service portal, your customers can log in and do the following:
- Update their address
- Update their phone number
- Add a new credit card or payment information
- Ask your company a question
- Get a previous invoice or receipt
If your company is not using automations, it’s time to jump on the train. There’s no reason a company shouldn’t be using automations. If you want your company to grow, automations can help you produce a thousand times faster without adding additional administration employees. Even if you are content with the size of your company, you should still implement automations. Automations can keep everything running smoothly, from payments to customer satisfaction. They will keep things from slipping through the cracks, thereby increasing your customer’s satisfaction.
Some of the primary things that automations can do for your company include:
- Onboarding – following up on quotes or estimates, and reminding you to make those phone calls too
- Customer satisfaction surveys
- Request for online reviews
- Follow up on declined credit cards
- Follow up on past-due invoices
- Send renewal notifications
- Provide your customers with service reminders
- Send you your reports automatically
- Remind you or your employees to complete specific tasks
Video tutorials are one of the more difficult tasks to start doing, especially if you never made videos before. It’s something I still dread doing a little bit. However, the more videos you make, the easier it gets. Making videos are simple and don’t cost a lot of money, and since more and more customers are looking at videos than text, you need to start making your videos.
Social Media Connectivity
One of the best ways to reach and connect customers is through social media. Your company needs to have a social media presence on several of today’s top platforms. Requests for support as well as complaints are displayed on the team dashboard. The delegated team can then reach out to the customer over the same social media network to resolve their concerns.
Time and again, personalization has been effectively used to entice customers into procuring a product or service that includes tailor-made offers. The integration of personalization into customer support leads to customer loyalty. Other benefits of personalization include:
- Add value to customer experience
- Reach consumers on a more personal level, such as conversing using their name
- Learn more about consumer interest
- Better customer engagement
Working From Home
More and more customer service representatives and receptionists are working from home. It benefits both the company and the employee. The company needs to invest much more money into quality assurance; however, since you don’t need to lease or buy as much real estate, you are saving more money. If you are considering doing this, make sure that you do the following:
- Monitor or listen to the calls
- Make sure that the customer can’t tell the employee is working from home
- Noone should be able to hear your television, dogs barking, people arguing, or kids running around in the background
- Verify that your receptionist or customer service agent is answering all calls
Let Us Know How You Are Implementing Some Of These Customer Service Trends for 2021
We hope this gives you some ideas on areas to invest in your company this year and going into 2021. If you need any assistance, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.