Do you remember the time when one had limited options of booking a cab? I know the world these days is immersed in the entire ‘app first’ phenomenon, but c’mon you must have some memory of how cab services were some years back – yes one could book a cab primarily through the phone.
Times have changed, people have changed, and likewise, customer interaction has observed massive transformation. While app based cab startups have opened a new realm of opportunities for people to avail trouble-free and on-the-go transportation, it has also posed several new challenges in customer interaction for these companies.
Some Striking Facts & Figures
- The taxi market in India is estimated at around $9 billion, out of which the organized sector constitutes a meagre $500 million.
- The organized sector can be classified into 3 categories, namely – Owners (Easy Cabs, Meru), Affiliates (Savaari, TaxiGuide), and Aggregators (Ola, Uber)
- Ola has the highest market share with 750k rides per day, while Uber holds the maximum Facebook followers.
- Some of the major challenges faced by the organized taxi market are – lack of skilled drivers, technical issues with apps/payments, regulatory hurdles, frequent cab unavailability as demand higher than supply.
How can Cab Startups Counter Challenges in Customer Interaction?
Emerging technology has become the key differentiator for startups hoping to make it large in the cab services market. As a result, players are looking to increase app usage by making their apps more transparent, flexible, and user-friendly, along with a host of features.
Some of the challenges in customer interaction that have bugged this space are – lack of customer privacy, slow response time, failure in real-time routing, faulty payment enquiries, customer identification & verification, and driver engagement via outbound calls.
To crush the aforementioned challenges in customer interaction, we have come up with the following 6 distinctive techniques:-
- Number Masking: With the increase of privacy concerns and harassment issues, it has become imperative for cab startups to keep customers and their sensitive information private. Number Masking is a feature that creates a communication channel between the customer and the service provider disguising the contact information of both the parties. Thereby, ironing out the chances of either side to contact each other afterwards.
- Omnichannel: These days, customers expect companies to listen to them and resolve issues on all mediums of interactions including voice, email, SMS/messaging, web, mobile, and social media. To handle customer communication across all mediums, an Omnichannel self-service is required which empowers the customer to start an activity in one channel, and seamlessly transition to another.
- Agent Availability: With an increasing number of people availing cab services, the need to provide a 24/7 customer support has risen manifold. Integrating cab websites and apps with web chat would help an Agent revert to queries instantaneously. Live chat helps companies engage with customers in real-time, while chat routing automatically assigns incoming chats to active agents. All these functions ensure customers receive prompt support, and agents don’t get overloaded.
- Real-time Intelligent Routing: To better handle customer interactions and complaints, a real-time intelligent routing is required that directs each call to the best skilled or idle contact center agent. Thereafter, agents can process the enquiry with the help of the driver and pass it on for confirmation in a matter of some minutes. This way, businesses can save time and frustration of the customer.
- Alternative Payment Options: Paying the exact cash is often troublesome for customers. This is where Payment Wallets can come to their rescue. Customers can also reach customer support in case of any payment enquiries, for example – if driver has charged more than usual for the trip.
- Transactional SMS: Messaging in cab services helps customers owing to its quick, transactional nature of interactions between the service provider and customers. Transactional SMS can be used to send cab updates, payment confirmation, and others. It can also be used for customer verification.