This week we feature an article from Gladly, a customer service platform. Learn how to best prepare your contact center for the holiday season.
As the holidays fast approach, many companies are starting to think about how to maximize efficiency within their contact centers. But how can you stay efficient and drive revenue while still delivering radically personal customer service? It may seem impossible to do all of this at the same time, especially as companies are asked to do more with less. However, it can be done—even with smaller teams. Here are 4 ways companies are delivering radically personal and efficient customer service this holiday season to win over customers and maximize revenue.
1) Start making hyper-personalized recommendations
Knowing a customer’s purchase history can help you create a personalized experience that ultimately leads to authentic upsell opportunities. By providing your agents a single view of a customer’s past orders and brand preferences, they can better understand the likes and dislikes of your customers to make more relevant, and authentic, recommendations.
Being able to see a customers’ past purchases can help agents recommend other products tailored to a customers’ specific preferences, which makes them more likely to go through with a purchase.
Example: If a customer calls in looking for a shipping update on a recently purchased pair of shoes—and you can see that they purchase shoes from you regularly, always in a particular style, and always in white—that presents an authentic opportunity to offer them the upcoming line of sneakers that you know they will love and likely want to purchase early in that moment.
2) Turn your agents into natural sellers
When agents can create a relationship with your customers that goes beyond the transactional, it increases the chances of them returning to you the next time they need something and makes them less price-sensitive or likely to switch to a competitor. Think about how to hire or train for sales, give agents insights into your customer preferences, make checkout easy and play to your agents’ strengths.
Arm your agents with the history and information they need to go beyond the transactional and build relationships with your customers.
Example: Consider structuring your agent’s KPIs and incentives around the revenue they bring in; like when they’re able to upsell or turn a customer’s exchange request into a net new sale. That way you motivate your agents to try to make the sale, rather than just resolve an issue.
3) Maximize efficiency with a people-centered approach
Ticket-based approaches to customer service are a thing of the past. If you truly want to see results this holiday season, it’s time to take a people-centered approach, helping agents work smarter instead of harder. To do this, consider making your customer the focal point of your work—not tickets.
One of our customers, JOANN, saw an immediate 30% increase in efficiency when they switched to Gladly from their ticket-based systems, that helped them reduce their backlog by 97% within just one month.
With Gladly, every communication from a customer—regardless of the channel—is assigned to the same agent. That way, there’s no duplicate work done, and a customer gets all their questions answered in one go, instead of piecemeal.
Example: With a customer-based approach, every communication from a customer is threaded into a single timeline. That means regardless of whether a customer reaches out once, or 5 times, or switches channels in between, all those conversations stay in one place and assigned to the same agent, rather than separated into 5 different tickets, assigned to 5 different agents.
4) Make Processing Payments Easy
Do you really want to generate revenue from your contact center this holiday season? If so, make processing payments easy. It may seem like a no-brainer but removing any hurdles your customers’ purchase journey might have will help you generate more revenue through your contact center. Empower your agents to issue payments through messaging channels during the actual conversation without having to have the customer go through your online checkout process or jump on the phone.
Take furniture and houseware brand Crate & Barrel, for example, who generated $100,000 in revenue within a week of launching the ability for their agents to take payments over chat.
Example: Let’s say your agent is answering a few questions via chat with a customer who says they are planning on purchasing a product. Instead of closing the conversation and leaving it to chance if the customer will finalize the purchase through the online check-out process, serve up a payment request directly in the context of the chat conversation itself so the customer doesn’t have to take a few extra steps.
Cutting down on complexity and streamlining your workflows can go a long way towards building a cost-effective and efficient contact center this holiday season. See more ways you can generate revenue through your contact center.
Check out how Gladly helps customers make customer service radically personal.
Gladly is a radically personal customer service platform. Unlike legacy customer service platforms that are case centric, only Gladly is designed with people at the center and uniquely enables a single lifelong customer conversation from voice to modern messaging. Gladly powers some of the most innovative consumer companies like Crate and Barrel, Warby Parker, JetBlue, TUMI, and more, to deliver exceptional customer experiences and makes customer service a competitive advantage.
For more articles from Shep Hyken and his guest contributors go to customerserviceblog.com.
Read Shep’s latest Forbes article: Burger King Makes Lemonade Out Of A Lemon: How To Have Fun With A COVID-19 Mask