Be Empathetic to Your Customers, With an Omnichannel Customer Experience (CX)

This piece is by Sat Sanghera, Chief Executive, IPI, and it looks at the rising customer expectations in a digital age. Contact centre responses can all the difference to your brand rating.

Digitalisation has created the expectation from consumers that they should be able to communicate easily with their best loved brands across omnichannels, whether phone, email, or on social media. Digital natives/Gen Zers in particular expect to reach organisations immediately, be it their favourite retailer through TikTok or their bank through a mobile app.

But in addition to access, all customers want an empathetic and personalised journey. Induced by the cost-of-living crisis and threat of recession, customers want to know that brands can deliver a personalised experience – be it an individual greeting by name by a Contact Centre agent or specifically curated offerings over social media.

Why it’s important to be aware of the views of today’s customer

From social media to online reviews, it has never been easier for today’s digital-savvy customer to leave an impact on a brand’s reputation. 84% of customers say they trust online reviews as much as they would trust recommendations from friends, so they can make or break a reputation with just a few clicks of a button.

What’s more, intense competition makes it easy for customers to jump ship to an alternative brand with a better customer experience. PWC found that 41% of customers who had difficulties with their insurers’ digital capabilities are more likely to switch providers. Keeping digital channels open is essential.

Even when it comes to complaints, companies that can achieve efficient and timely resolutions across multiple channels are in a much better position to harness customer loyalty. In the retail sector, customers who have complaints resolved quickly are shown to have a purchase intention rate of 82%.

However, understanding the digital customer is just the first step. The real results come through meaningful actions.

Technologies that can cater to the customer of today

In the age of the digital, cloud-based Contact Centre, organisations are better placed, through technology, to meet the expectations of today’s customer.

IVR for example, puts the time a customer is on hold to good use by gathering information on the customer – such as name, reason for calling and customer service history. This helps Contact Centres to triage calls, and put them through to the right department, enabling agents to help the customer as soon as they’re connected. This is key to fulfilling the personalised expectations of the customer of today, as agents can greet them by name and know their previous history with that brand.

Chatbots are great for tech-savvy customers who prefer not to speak to an agent. Chatbots are always ‘on,’ are powered by AI and employ pre-prepared Q&As to help answer customer queries at a time that suits them. They also provide data which can be analysed to improve the customer journey. For example, if the data shows that a question is repeatedly being asked on the chatbot about a particular product or service, changes can be made to improve that element.

In the same vein speech and text analytics, for example, can help make positive changes. Whether customers are contacting an organisation over the phone or via text-based channels like email or chatbot, their comments are filled with data and feedback about branding, products, processes and services.

What’s more, sentiment analytics enables organisations to track how customers are feeling and indicate to the customer service agent to be aware and react accordingly.

What’s next?

Recent advances made in customer experience have improved both the customer journey and enabled Contact Centres to diversify their offerings to meet the customer expectations of today. But as customer expectations continue to evolve and change as new challenges like the cost-of-living crisis come into play, organisations must continue to look to innovate, and deliver a customer journey that is as human and empathetic as it is technologically innovative.

About alastair walker 11432 Articles
20 years experience as a journalist and magazine editor. I'm your contact for press releases, events, news and commercial opportunities at Insurance-Edge.Net

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