Twenty years ago, mobile phones were a rarity. They were bulky, cumbersome and limited at best. The thought of utilizing them for customer service was laughable.
Things have changed.
Now, it has come full circle. The thought of being attached to a landline for twenty plus minutes is dreadful, to say the least. We are mobile, as are our needs. So when we need customer service, it’s typically on the go.
This is especially true with today’s customer. As we’ve explored previously, they demand speed, self-service and omni-channel support. We have advanced with our technologies so much that they now influence how the customer expects to be served.
Smartphones and apps are extremely popular today. One of the responsibilities of the innovative contact center is in keeping up with the trends – even anticipating them. Data from the Global Web Index shows that 80% of web surfers now access the internet via their smartphone. That’s right behind the classic desktop PC.
If you can offer the customer omni-channel support, that’s great for them. If you can do it through an organized help desk that centralizes your contact center, that’s good for you. If you can allow the customer to reach their end resolution in just a few taps, that’s good for you and the customer.
Offering mobile app support can allow the customer to make purchases or request a callback, for example. Those are just two examples of features that make things easier for your contact center and the customer – it’s a win-win.
Automatic reminders are another example. Reminders are an automatic feature that a customer can use at their discretion. Apps empower the customer to take care of trivial concerns quickly and without the need for time investments. Trivial concerns can often turn into frustrations, so you want to use apps to minimize the odds of those frustrations occurring.
Today’s contact center needs to seriously consider mobile apps in order to keep up with the rapidly changing trends in mobile technology. Mobile apps are yet another valuable means to offer the customer a great, smooth experience. That leads to more customer loyalty and less churn because the customer doesn’t need to go through the arduous, time consuming process of reaching an agent.
What else can mobile apps do for you?
First, they can give superb organization. Let’s say you offer a service that demands periodic updates. For example, where customers need to access account information, like balances and purchase histories. In that case, a mobile app allows them to check on that changing data at their convenience. The best part? They can do that with a single tap, eliminating the need for a CSR and company resources. It also saves the customer’s time. Again, good for company and customer.
In terms of self-service, apps are a no-brainer. Customers using an app for their service needs are going to be more inclined to seek out a self-service option. If they are already on their smartphone, make it easy for them to do what they need to do. One of the ways to accomplish that is by offering 24/7 support, possible through an app. Customers should be able to access their accounts, for example, to see the status of an order. And if they can do that while they are already on their phone – that’s pure efficiency.
Apps also connect you with the customer. Many of your customers will likely be active on social media, and many of them will access social media via their smartphones. Therefore, you need to connect your brand with those customers, and you can do that through social media – it’s an advertising outlet.
Contact centers can use this golden data to empower the entire operation. Whether you develop an app or use a preexisting app, it’s another tool to add to your arsenal.