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The Definitive Guide to 24/7 Customer Service for Your Business
Customer Service is important as it prioritizes the customer queries to provide a better experience. A business can provide 24/7, irrespective of the industry, as it is one way to build customer loyalty. It places into consideration an emergency solution that a customer may require.
This article details what it entails, determining if you need 24/7 customer service, the benefits, and practices to adopt.
What Does 24/7 Customer Service Mean?
24/7 customer service means providing customers with live help at all times. It is also popularly known as 24/7 tech support. This strategy is designed to ensure customers can get any of their problems resolved no matter the day or time.
The support can be provided through chatbots, live chat, embedded messaging, or developing a knowledge base.
How Do You Know If Your Business Needs 24/7 Customer Service?
For specific organizations, 24/7 customer support is critical while others are dependent on customer demands and growth. If you have a customer base that spans several time zones, 24/7 support is necessary. It considers the daytime periods and possible times customers could need support.
Also, some industries require instant replies to customers’ needs. Industries such as healthcare, travel, finance, etc., all require constant communication in case of emergencies.
Benefits of 24/7 Customer Service
There are specific reasons why providing 24/7 customer service is essential to an organization. Below you’ll find some of the benefits that they provide:
To provide support in different time zones
It is important to provide support in local time zones even when there is already a ground team in all locations, which is not always likely. The easiest way to dominate a new market or different time zone is by providing a great customer experience. Constant and 24/7 support shows reliability and improves the experience.
Also, the support being in the region’s local language is important as it is part of the customer support.
Part of a Premium Product
As an organization, you may have a premium offering that already has its benefits and this could be one. It is often connected with average or pricey B2B services that require constant technical support for smooth running.
This has proven to be a profit center as problems are known to frustrate customers. Thus, they are willing to pay more when there is 24/7 support.
To meet Customer’s Expectations.
Noting the current digital world, customers demand instant services no matter what time of the day or day of the week. Such expectations are not often associated with the cost of getting the product or service delivered. It is often regarded as a prerequisite for a proper customer experience.
Such support is mostly predictable for any organization as a portion of the running cost. Leading companies are expected to use it to drive up profits and be different from industry competitors.
The only problem that may be expected is if your organization is transitioning to a larger community demanding a more substantial customer community. However, the benefit is in optimizing future support for all customers.
Building Customer Loyalty
According to SalesForce Research, 91% of customers have identified their experience as a determining factor in staying loyal to a brand. This is beneficial to businesses as it creates a basis for consistent income.
Also, the process of retaining new customers is way more tasking than keeping those that are already familiar with the business. Through good customer service skills and reliable support, you can build a relationship with existing customers for long-term purposes.
Improve Organizational Image
How an organization is perceived is important in driving up patronage. Customers are hardly satisfied with just reading FAQs and prefer to speak to a real human. This is viewed as an easier way to get immediate solutions.
When customers can get support 24/7, it becomes easier to associate the brand with the right attributes. It is easier to forgive a company mistake with excellent customer service. They would also make recommendations to others based on their experience.
Therefore, proper technical support changes how the public receives a brand. It shows that you take the customers and their issues seriously.
Best Practices to Follow When Providing 24/7 Customer Service
Some tips and practices should be followed when providing 24/7 customer service. This would ensure that the experience is optimized for the customers.
Here are practices to adopt:
Improved Self Service
Getting solutions by themselves is a relief for your existing team and helps the customers feel more involved in the process. This cuts down the resources and time that is ordinarily spent on customer support.
As an organization, an important practice would be to identify popular queries and then post solutions in a forum or through a knowledge base. Your business website can also be simplified to make it more user-friendly, among other processes offered.
There could also be provisions for screenshots, videos, webinars, etc, which could educate users and customers without engaging a member of your team. All efforts should be made to cut out any avoidable complications of engaging your product or services.
Think Global From the Onset
Every country and region has its peculiarities and so do the processes. The departments, offices, and even products offered would require a unique form to be included in the customer support. The help provided should be in their local language with options for other languages.
As a process, every part of providing 24/7 support should leave provisions for future expansions. This eases the idea of having to expand to another country or region.
Adopt a Call Center
Contact or call centers are used as a way for customers to talk to a human agent about their problems and get real-time support. Even though there are other channels, most customers prefer calling to ensure satisfaction.
Organize a 24/7 call center unit equipped with handling queries about your business. Certain call center analytics services are optimized for businesses, and their automation services make it easier to route the calls to the right department.
It can also create room to attend to more customers as the resolution time is faster with the call center. The setup creates consistency as the customers are sure they can get help at all times.
Match Queries with the Right Response Time
Customer satisfaction is the reason for providing support which makes their expectation important. This suggests that once an inquiry is lodged, an automatic response should inform the customer when it would be resolved.
The acknowledgment of receipt would be able to buy you time to solve the problem and also improve the customer experience. However, this is not a free pass, as it is essential to have the problems in a time frame that is more convenient for the customer than for your team.
Based on the channel that is used in laying out the inquiry, the response time should differ. Social media can help you improve customer experience since it’s more instant than live chat support and email requests. This would help the customers feel like they are prioritized.
Get Everyone Involved
Responding to inquiries should be an important culture integrated into your organization. The major issue with providing 24/7 support is having the resource and personnel to attend to such queries. Instead of hiring new agents just for queries, you can get those already part of the organization involved.
This might seem like a desperate solution, but it is one of the most reliable options. Those already part of the organization are more equipped to handle queries as they are well informed about the organization.
For a more organized way of handling such issues, those delegated to assist in providing support can take turns. It can also be categorized to make sure that the queries are directed to those whose discipline is needed.
Merge Tech with Human Effort
Technology helps optimize the support provided by your organization but the human interaction also personalizes the 24/7 support provided. The technology could involve using bots, which cuts down the cost of human interaction considerably. Chatbots can be engaged anytime and any day, which makes them reliable.
However, some issues are escalated and would require real-time interaction to handle, and agents can only provide that. This would ensure a quick way of dealing with the issue and also ensure customer loyalty.
In cases where the chatbots cannot handle a query, they are to be escalated to the human agents. This would ensure they are resolved and improve the customer experience.
Playbooks are essential as they create guidelines while leaving time for creativity. Since countries and regions differ, the playbooks allow for your team to respond to queries uniquely to optimize efforts. There should be a set of processes that serve as a globalized format for each support channel.
New agents become better prepared when dealing with customer demands before establishing their style. It also ensures consistency in the replies and interactions between the agents and the customers.
The playbooks can also be updated when new patterns are discovered or with new goals. There could be standardized languages to ensure that the interactions are cordial.
How Can I Get 24/7 Customer Service?
To get 24/7 customer service, there is a need to strengthen your self-service options. Even though such support requires an expansion of your team, there should be arrangements to make sure they can help themselves without having human interactions.
Another way is by establishing customer support channels that can cater to all. You can get a call center service, invest in chatbots, or hire proactive handlers. They would respond to all the demands quickly and direct the queries to the right departments.
As a business, you can hire a customer service provider to handle everything. This would take away the stress of handling them directly. They are similar to having call center agents, but this would cover all the different channels.
Be Available 24/7 for Your Customers – Summary Section
24/7 customer service presents your business as reliable as it means placing the customers’ needs first. They combine various channels that are accessible to the customers and are constantly monitored.
You can adopt 24/7 customer support as a way to improve your business. However, a call system is important for those that call in. ULTATEL provides a cloud call center service that can be integrated into your customer service process.
Greg is the product marketer for ULTATEL. He develops and markets products that help people do their best work, and enables the businesses they work for grow their revenue.