The Most Effective Customer Service Technology

“New technologies are raising consumer expectations when it comes to customer service, and companies will pay the price if they don’t respond,” – Stephanie Condon

A business enterprise can use the value proposition of a superior customer experience in an attempt to differentiate itself from its competitors. This may represent an important initiative because markets are getting increasingly competitive and customer dollars tend to gravitate toward businesses that provide the best customer service. Companies can use various forms of customer service technology to stay competitive, generate higher returns on investment, boost profit margins, and create competent customer service experiences. The use of technology is critical to achieve the stated outcomes because a raft of consumer technologies is increasingly informing the interactions between businesses and the consumer. The ubiquity of such technologies also means that it costs companies a few cents to target and service each paying customer. In addition, the future of such technologies remains wide open and that indicates that newer technologies will develop in the future, thereby expanding the grounds for using technologies to craft customer service experiences.

An instant messaging platforms rank high in terms of customer service technology. The owners and developers of such platforms can create commercial messaging features that enable businesses to interact with customers in a personal and direct way. Cutting-edge technologies such as chat-bots can be developed and incorporated into the direct messaging platforms. These systems may enable the customer to place their orders and complete the payment details inside the said platform. We could say that this is one of the methods through which business enterprises can connect directly with customers. In addition, we have to bear in mind the fact that mobile messaging is used by billions of people (potential customers) across the globe. This represents an interesting opportunity for businesses to communicate with customers and amplify the chances of achieving customer delight. This approach can also help to elevate customer service to new levels of efficiency by delivering exceptional business value.

Omni-channel customer service can be a different approach to customer service technology. This technology is in its infancy but has the potential to meld both online and offline channels into one unified customer experience. Omni-channel can also be taken to mean that the business enterprise seeks to integrate mobile marketing campaigns, social media-powered campaigns, blog and website traffic, and brick and mortar store experiences. Omni-channel customer service seeks to create one seamless interaction with customers. The use of such technologies also helps an enterprise to issue a speedy response to customer queries and requirements. The perfect omni-channel experience also seeks to draw on past interactions with a customer so that the enterprise can establish and sustain a meaningful interaction with the customer. Therefore, modern businesses would be well advised to invest significant resources to create and refine a dignified omni-channel experience in the interests of boosting desirable business outcomes.

Customer service technology can also help businesses to capture data and information from individual customer interactions. This implies the use of business analytics software and big data technologies, wherein every interaction with a customer (or customers) is recorded for future analysis. These technologies are in the evolution stage and are designed to peek into the mind set of each customer and draw inferences that can be processed into actionable intelligence. Big data technologies use past interactions with customers to anticipate fresh customer requests and to boost the levels of customer interaction. Consider this: a regional airline service is competing in the market to enhance its market share. The enterprise can use big data technologies to capture every customer interaction in intricate detail. The various customer demands, the inflection of voice, the tone of customer interactions, and other details can be recorded and analysed. The information that issues from this exercise can assist the enterprise to determine the most requested services, common customer complaints, record, and evaluate the efficacy of customer suggestions, monitor the average levels of customer behaviour, and arrive at action points. This information can be processes by the enterprise to improve its services and thereby achieve higher customer satisfaction levels. This information can also be used to foster and develop long-term customer relationships.

The use of artificial intelligence is another instance of using customer service technology to enhance business outcomes. Artificial intelligence has its origins in science laboratories and in the field of industrial robotics, but has since been adapted and moulded to expand customer service paradigms. For instance, a business enterprise can use artificial intelligence technologies to handle customer queries and questions regarding products and services. The use of such technologies can be expanded to include the area of business development. Software algorithms powered by artificial technologies can be used to reach millions of new customers through the Internet, evaluate customer attitudes and responses, and present actionable information in terms of new customer acquisitions. Moreover, artificial intelligence can be used to power chat bots that are increasingly operating in the front lines of customer interactions. This easy and cost-efficient solution does not burden the enterprise with staff training and re-training costs. Artificial intelligence technologies can also be used in conjunction with machine learning and human agents to the effect that the performance of the said technologies improves with time. It may also emerge that sophisticated chat bots may one day outperform human customer service agents at no extra cost to the business enterprise. This is yet another instance of customer service technology helping the business enterprise to forge deeper relationships with customers. Therefore, every business must seriously consider using artificial intelligence (as appropriate) in the course of regular business operations.

Two-way video chats provide another illuminating instance of modern customer service technology. Significant advances have been achieved in the domains of mobile Internet technologies, and bandwidth (electronic connectivity) is no longer a concern in many parts of the civilised world. The modern business enterprise should be encouraged to video chat with customers in the backdrop of such developments. This form of communication presents an instance of face-to-face communications between a customer and a business representative. This kind of communication can help the business to connect at a deeper level with the customer and perhaps, resolve customer situations faster than earlier. Video chatting can also be initiated from connected mobile platforms and this expands the scope for a wide ranging conversation with the customer. We could say that this customer service technology bears the potential to bring customers and the business enterprise on a common, real-time platform. The progress of technology can make such interactions more commonplace in the future; therefore, businesses must seriously consider the use of such technology in their customer service strategies.

In the preceding paragraphs, we have surveyed the various options in customer service technology available to the modern enterprise. These technologies can help businesses to refine customer service practices, boost the end-user experience, and generally, create and project an impression of competence. The business enterprise is at liberty to evaluate and deploy the said technologies in an attempt to stay in step with changing business landscapes. The enterprise must bear in mind that such technologies are here to stay and any delay in investing in the use of such technologies may lead to calamitous consequences.

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