The Role of Multi-Channel Customer Support for Customer Retention

Multichannel Customer Support

There are several channels for the customers to contact a call center today. Customers can contact call centers via phone, video call, social media, chat, and so on. Making these channels available in your call center can help to increase customer satisfaction, and can in turn help with customer retention.

It is frustrating for customers when they are unable to reach a call center to solve an issue. For example, Internet connectivity is vital for a customer who works from home. If the Internet connection goes down during a video conference, then naturally the customer will be angry. At that time, if he / she is unable to reach your call center within 5 or 6 minutes, it will lead to frustration. Frustrated customers are never good for your business. Now, if your call center has multi-channel support, the customer will be able to reach you quickly. For example, if your call center is experiencing high call volume, with an average wait time well over 15 minutes, the customer can try chat support or text support, and get the issue resolved quickly.

Importance of Customer Satisfaction

Multi-channel customer support offers the benefit of being able to provide service to individual customers very efficiently. Since the customer can be provided with a higher level of service, it can lead to an increase in customer satisfaction and higher retention rates. Implementing Multi-channel customer support in your call center will give you an edge over your competition. Amazing customer service will make people talk about your brand. Customers will become advocates, recommending your company to friends and colleagues purely on the basis of receiving first class service.

How Poor Customer Service can Affect your Company

Poor customer service is detrimental to your company in two ways.

  • It can lead to losing your customer to your competitor – Customers nowadays have a lot of choices. If they are not satisfied with your product or service, they will immediately switch to your competitor.
  • Frustrated customers may generate bad publicity for your company – We live in a socially-connected world. If a customer is frustrated with your service, they can generate as much bad publicity as they want, to vent their frustration, via social media.

Among the top reasons for a customer to end their relationship with your company are as follows.

  • A customer being forced to repeat himself / herself.
  • Having to wait too long for service.
  • Being trapped in an automated self-service line.
  • Unable to switch between communication channels easily.

Most of these issues can be solved with the help of multi-channel customer support.

The Different Channels Available for Customer Support

There are many channels for a customer to get in touch with a call center. Following are some of them.

Phone-support

Phone-support is the main, and preferable point of contact for a lot of customers. However, if your call center is not properly equipped with knowledgeable agents and resources, it can become a major source of frustration, for both the agent and the customer. Increased wait-time, complicated IVR systems, unresponsive agents, and so on can make a customer irate with the whole process. Implementing other customer support channels will help to overcome this situation.

Email-support

A lot of customers prefer email support. They can avoid the hassle of calling. They can just send an email to the support team, mentioning all the required information, and wait for a reply. Now, it is important that you have an efficient email support team. If you have one, it will lead to timely replies, resolved issues, and happy customers. If you don’t, then even this channel will only lead to customer frustration.

Social network support

You can include social media in your support strategy. A lot of people (customers / potential customers) spend time on social media. Many of them prefer to reach out via Twitter or Facebook, for support with their product / service issues. This type of support is good for the agents as well. They can quickly, and easily tweet out a reply / solution. The only catch is that they have to work fast. More than 50% of Facebook users and 80% of Twitter users expect their queries to be answered within one day or less. If they don’t get a reply, they may leave the business. So it is important that you have an efficient social media support team.

Live chat

One of the most important features in a website is the option to provide customers with live-chat support while they are going through the site. A lot of customers prefer live-chat support compared to other support channels. It is easy, and convenient. The only requirement is that the customer has to have an Internet connection. Again, a good chat support team is necessary for a smooth and efficient customer support.

There are a lot of channels like these to deliver customer service. Combining these channels, and implementing them in your call center will definitely help increase customer retention.

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