Every year businesses go out of their way to make their services as good as they can. Companies all around the world are trying to figure out the way to improve their offer and to cover all the possible needs of their customers. Of course, with tendencies like these it is no wonder that several ‘musts’ have risen.
For example, a company must provide the best customer service possible. A company must analyze all important KPIs and a company must provide omnichannel customer support. Why? Because the easier it is for the customers to reach a support team, the more likely it is that they will be satisfied with the services they get.
If your customers connect with your company over the chat and instead get an email response (some ticketing systems do work this way) in over 24 hours, KPIs will decline rapidly and inevitably and in the end the customer is very likely to churn. To prevent this, the customer service team has to make sure that they provide customer support across all possible channels of communication: phone, email, chat, social media and any other kind of communication like, for example SMS messages or communication via various messengers.
So, let’s talk about omnichannel customer support. What are the communication channels that every business needs to cover and why is it important?
In this article, we'll cover:
Omnichannel vs. Multichannel Customer Support
Multichannel customer support is exactly what it sounds like — it is the way for the customer to reach a vendor using MULTIPLE channels. Multiple, not any channel possible. And that is the crucial difference that sets multi- apart from omnichannel support. But which one of these is better when it comes to customer support?
Nowadays customers are not willing to wait and look for the best way to reach a business, they want to have the possibility to communicate with it whenever and via any channel they want (aka here and now!) or find more suitable. Moreover, they want the information to transfer, so if they communicate via email and then switch to chat, a vendor must make sure that their ticketing system allows for the information on the customer and their issue to be saved and accessed by a customer support consultant to provide seamless customer service. ❗ Remember — for a customer having to turn to customer support is an ordeal in itself. Having to explain the issue to the support team multiple times because of the breach in communication is even worse.
Omnichannel customer support allows businesses to do just that — be completely customer centric and to provide the best customer communication via any communication channel, fully interchanging them. Now this does sound like a top-notch support that customers are expecting to get from a business.
So, what is the difference between multichannel customer support and omnichannel customer support? Omnichannel is the fullest and best version of service when it comes to communication. It allows businesses to provide and gather information from the customers through any means of communication available. It also rids the business from any limitations and allows it to provide completely seamless customer support.
The Most Important Communication Channels
1. 📞 Phone
Phone remains the most used (48% of customers) and the most preferred (80% of customers) way to communicate with the support team. Phone allows the support team to provide assistance seamlessly and instantaneously. It is the best way to provide speedy, empathetic and scaling customer support all the while retaining the quality of answers and escalating customer tickets when needed.
Customer support via the phone requires special skills from the support team. They have to:
- Know the product inside-out to instantly answer all the possible customer questions;
- Know how to de-escalate the customer;
- Remain calm no matter what;
- Be at their most helpful throughout their call.
Balancing all these qualities are important when it comes to providing the best possible customer support over the phone.
2. 📧 Email
Over 50% of customers have used email in order to reach a support team. That means that even with abundance of choice, customers still prefer to communicate with customer service over the email. Why? It is quite simple, really. Email is still the best way to send all the necessary files and information to the support consultant in order to resolve the ticket as fast as possible.
When providing customer support over the email, speed is of the essence. It is said that whenever contacting a support team over the email, the customer expects to be answered in a matter of 60 minutes. Anything more and customer satisfaction is going to decrease. Brands that answer emails promptly are likely to boost their sales and increase customer satisfaction rate.
3. 💬 Chats
42% of consumers prefer to use chats to communicate with a customer support team. This means that almost half of your customers prefer a quick communication over the chat rather than a phone. That is why a lot of businesses opt for chat support — it is easy to set up, after all, CRM systems usually have a chat feature built-in and it is easy to maintain as usually they distribute the tickets automatically, leaving the human factor out of the equation.
4. 📱 Social media
67% of customers say that they have engaged with the customer service team over the brand’s social media. And we are only in the very beginning of communication-via-the-social-media. Imagine what is going to happen next!
With social media only developing, soon freely communicating with the customers over social media will become industry standard. After all, it is already a viable communication option.
For communication with our clients’ customers SupportYourApp uses our innovative in-house developed QCRM — a tool that helps us sort and handle all the customer inquiries, no matter what channel of communication we receive them through.
Want to get omnichannel customer support?
Why Is Omnichannel Support Important?
There are several reasons omnichannel support is important for your business and for retaining your customer base.
- It is convenient
Convenience for the customers must be number one priority for any modern business. And if the customers need omnichannel support and the possibility to communicate with the support team by any channel they want, so be it. Such are the rules of business — if you want to develop and scale, you have to fully satisfy your customers.
- It shows customer centric policies
Of course, if a business is doing everything to satisfy a customer, it is clear that their values are quite customer centric and that they will provide the best service as it is simply in their company DNA. As a result, your customer base will feel comfortable reaching out to you as they know that they will be heard and that their issues will be resolved.
- It provides seamless experience
Modern tech world is all about seamless. Seamless services, seamless integration, seamless connection. But what about seamless customer experience overall? If a business really cares about its customers and wants to reduce the churn as well as ensure loyalty, it will take the time to set up omnichannel support. Customers, in their turn, will surely respond with great testimonials and awesome feedback.
- It improves collaboration between the departments
When a business makes sure that its customers can reach a support team easily, they have more time to set up their inner communication processes. They can pay more attention to collaborating and making sure that all departments have the possibility to communicate and collaborate openly and freely. And this, in its turn, will result in smooth inner operations and more productive collaboration.
- The analysis of the channels will help you improve business performance
What channels do your customers prefer for communication with you? What time of day are they at their most active? What product, service or piece of content do they like the most? You can learn the answers to all these questions when analyzing the communication with your customers. And the more channels you have, the easier it is to do, as you have more data and more ways to look at it. Thus, you have more ways to perfect your business.
All Channel in One — Ahead of the Crowd
The team of SupportYourApp saw the necessity of omnichannel customer support very early on. As a result, we created our in-house built CRM system QCRM. It helps us answer phone calls, emails, chats and integrate any messenger into it all in one piece of software. This way, we give our clients’ customers the best customer service as well as the possibility to reach the support team any way they prefer. This surely helps raise the customer satisfaction rate which we already keep pretty high — 95%. 💛
Anna has been working as a writer for 5 years. She previously wrote about financial markets, conducting the research on the state of bonds and stocks on a daily basis. She is a keen reader with interest in historical literature and international cuisine. Her latest obsession — customer communication and ways to perfect it. If you want to connect with Anna, follow her on LinkedIn.Posted on