By Sharon Kiggundu
Every customer enjoys flawless customer service, which is something that all businesses today are striving to achieve.
As such, customer experience has become a major competing differentiating factor for most, if not, all existing brands today.
When making purchase decisions, several consumers tend to gravitate more towards companies or brands that value their consumer needs.
Within this context, small and leading brands should be on the lookout for the following customer service trends among the many that will shape 2022.
CONSUMER PATIENCE WILL CONTINUE TO WAVER
The rising and ever evolving standards that consumers expect from the brands that serve them are overwhelmingly on the rise. Consumer preferences, expectations, and tolerances tend to fluctuate. According to the Stella Connect 2022 Report, 60% of consumers across the US and UK will not buy from a brand after a poor customer service experience.
Consumers expect to be served a certain way that fits a particular criterion that could be a great cause for concern for most brands if not met.
This leaves most brands little to no room for error, which would call for the use of tools, such as real-time and data analytics, essential for staying in touch with the fluctuating needs of customers and improving overall satisfaction in 2022.
SPEED AND EFFICIENCY
Consumers today are accustomed to high-speed services, such as next-day deliveries, one-click ordering, and 24/7 customer helplines, to name but a few. With such services in place, the stakes are high for most service providers as their customers expect nothing short of the best service delivery. Speed and convenience are quickly becoming critical factors for success for brands, especially when interacting directly with customers. According to Invoca, 87% of respondents said a good customer care support service made them feel more confident in making high-consideration purchases.
On that note, businesses should consider good training for their customer teams as a means of getting to the root of their customers’ issues quickly.
CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE WILL BE A DETERMINANT FOR FEEDBACK
Customer feedback plays a crucial role in either making or breaking a business. A customer is solely driven by the experience they derive from purchasing a product or service, which is a crucial determinant of whether they will be a returning customer or even go the extra mile to recommend a potential client.
While some businesses/ brands may have taken the back seat on keeping track of customer feedback, customers must know that every one of their reviews is treated as an opportunity to serve them better.
SERVICE RECOVERY WILL LEAD TO POWERFUL OPPORTUNITIES
Making a mistake is not pleasant, but it is natural. On the upside, businesses can leverage mistakes as a means to boost loyalty, customer retention, and even trust amid the recovery process. It is also an incredibly effective way for brands to drive future engagement with existing and potential customers.
According to stellaconnect.com, 88% of consumers are more likely to leave feedback (positive or negative) regarding a customer service interaction if they know it would help the agent improve their ability to service customers’ needs.
CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE ON MOBILE DEVICES
Most customers today are using mobile devices, such as mobile phones to purchase products and services online. As such, businesses should focus on improving and increasing usability on mobile as it is one of the best customer experience strategies to generate more profits.
According to customerthink.com, around 57% of customers are concerned about how a brand’s website appears on mobile and would not recommend a business with a poorly designed website. This shows that customers expect a swift process when seeking customer support on mobile devices, which calls for companies to focus more on increasing website navigation and improving site search on mobile devices.
The new year is around the corner, and customer service teams have a critical role to play in their organisation’s success. On that note, teams should allocate the majority of their energy and resources to ensure that problems don’t arise, given that the customer service mindset is often one of prevention.
The writer is the President, Uganda Marketers Society (UMS)