Omni-channel customer service is the seamless assistance of your customers queries across multiple contact channels at different touch points.
What is omni-channel customer service & why should you offer it?
Firstly, I’ll start by explaining what it is!
Omni-channel customer service is the seamless assistance of your customers queries across multiple contact channels at different touch points. Businesses who offer this omni-channel approach consistently maintain & exceed their customer’s expectations.
Due to the massive growth of digital channels, consumers expect to contact businesses via their preferred contact channel at a time that’s convent for them. By adopting an omni channel customer service approach your business can deal with those queries via the phone, email, a web chat on your website, WhatsApp, or even social media channels such as Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.
Conversations can even switch between channels part way through, a good example of this would a customer coming through on a web chat as they have a been sent the wrong item, the call may then switch to WhatsApp to send through an image instantly of the incorrect item, before arranging the return & sending out a prepaid returns label via email or again WhatsApp.
Another example might be a customer contacting their insurance company as they have a leak. The conversation might start on a web chat & the agent might ask for a video of the leak to check the damage before transferring them through to their claims department.
In both scenarios, each interaction would be recorded against their account to show the conversation that took place on each channel. The agent can easily switch the channel over as well as transfer through to specialist departments where needed. This means there is no break in the conversation & the customer doesn’t have to explain themselves over & over again, which is a massive bug bear for consumers.
What are the benefits of having a successful omni channel customer support team?
Omni channel brings all your customer queries into the same place meaning less time opening other windows, dealing with the query & copying notes across to the customer’s account. You can also set rules that will determine which channels or type of interaction is more urgent. For example, a customer waiting to get through to you on the phone could be given higher priority over a web chat which would be given a higher priority over a WhatsApp message or a social media DM. You will work through queries faster & in a time sensitive manner for each channel.
Improved Customer experience.
Your customers can contact you on the channel they prefer even when out of hours & still experience great service. The continuity of service between channels & of agents means that your customers don’t have to keep repeating themselves when they come through. Plus, you’ll be making it easy for people to contact you. And when it comes to out of hours, with out of hours, self-service options & the ability to set up automated responses to advise your customers when to expect to hear back from you, you will find your customers will be more than happy with being kept informed.
By providing your customers with a better customer experience you will in turn create brand champions. Your customers are your best form of advertisement for your products & your services. It’s a well-known fact that retaining customers is cheaper than acquiring new customers.
Increased Revenue growth.
Omni channel helps to remove barriers to upgrading or purchasing new products or services from your business. And because you are turning customers into brand champions, they will not only spend more money with you, but they will also refer friends & family who will help to drive up revenues.
By knowing which of your channels get the most customer interactions & when they get the most, you can better plan when to have more staff available. You’ll also know which channels are most efficient at dealing with large volumes of enquiries.
Easier to add more channels.
Once you have adopted the omni channel approach & trained staff in how to best manage these you will find it much easier to add new channels as & when they become popular for businesses & customers alike. You will already have the correct road map to adding in new channels seamlessly.