The Belding Group of Companies, a customer service and training company, gathered data from previous years and summarized some interesting trends for 2013. All of these trends will affect the customer service industry in the New Year, with most concerns driven by technology and customer expectations to be the focus of 2013. Belding Group’s detailed list explains each of these.
Some of the main points found by Belding include focus on the customer experience while on a customer service call, avoid “wow-ing” them and instead give them hassle-free support, increasing use of social media, growing a better customer service staff, and increased, quality tracking of customer service experiences.
The report notes, “The research is telling us that creating ‘Wow’ experiences and ‘delighting’ customers doesn’t deliver the type of increased customer loyalty we once thought. Making a customer’s experience consistently pleasant, seamless and trouble-free is the best strategy.”
All of these important points will require companies in the customer service industry to embrace or focus on new technologies to drive business. Belding found, for example, that customers prefer a more relaxed, easygoing customer service experience before being “wow-ed” by unique sales pitches, upsells, or offers from agents. This is great for the industry since the cost of adding said perks and offers will decrease or be eliminated in lieu of a more pleasant social interaction between a customer and an agent.
More streamlined processes (like embracing live chat) will also need to take place. As the report notes, “Companies are now recognizing that customer service needs to be present throughout an organization. Look for continued growth of focus on internal customer service, and service in non-traditional customer touch-points such as accounts receivable, shipping/receiving, security, etc.” When companies embrace these advances in the industry, customer loyalty is likely to strengthen.
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Edited by Brooke Neuman