In an effort to reduce costs, and all to often under the guise of “improving” customer service, companies today are moving toward automated and customer “self” service on their websites. Too often the effort doesn’t make life better for customers. Too often the message the customer gets is, “If you want to buy from us you are on your own. Don’t call us for help.”
As a Customer Courtesy call center providing services to companies in a variety of industries, we’ve heard and seen a lot – especially complaints about distributors, service departments, or other departments being of no help.
Here are some examples: (Perhaps you’ve experienced one or more yourself.)
Customer calls into a company’s support number only to hear, “This voicemail box is full. Please call back later.”
Customer can’t find reference to replacement parts on a company’s website. Referred to two distributors neither of whom help and refer the caller back to the corporate office.
Customer searches company website’s FAQS and Knowledge Base and can’t find the answer to his questions. There is no other communication channel to the business.
Customer submits web forms and emails to “Support” and gets no response.
Customer attempts web chat only to receive the response “We appreciate your request. A representative will get back to you within 24 hours.”
What do you think the customers did next? Contacted the competition is my bet. I know that I would, and have, and bet you would too.
With over 20 years as a B2B Customer Care Center offering call, text, web form, and email support, we understand the value of quality Customer Service. That’s why we provide U.S. based, English speaking operators who answer “live” without phone trees and via other major channels.
Customers who rated having the poorest experience had only a 43% chance of being a customer a year later.
Customers who gave the top experience scores had a 74% chance of remaining a customer for at least another year.
On average, customers who gave the lowest scores were likely only remain customers for a little over a year. Customers who gave the highest scores were likely to remain customers for another six years.
If you are a CEO, I challenge you to “Ghost Shop” your customer service department and learn first hand just how customer friendly and effective your company is. You could be losing sales because of customer “Self” service. As I’ve discussed in earlier customer service posts, improving your customer care could prove to be one of the easiest, fastest ways to grow customer loyalty, retention and revenue, and add to your bottom line.
For more information on improving your customer care, please visit our Solution pages on our Call Center and Web Chat services.