Today I’m featuring another Guest Blogger who provides us with some tips on successful self-service. Stefanie Amini is the Marketing Director and Specialist in Customer Success at WalkMe, the world’s first interactive online guidance system. She is chief writer and editor of IWant It Now, a blog for Customer Service Experts. Follow her @StefWalkMe
3 Ways to Create a Positive Self-Service Customer Experience
How many times have called a company to reach their customer service team and gone around in circles waiting for the right option to come your way? Then, when you finally find the right option, it still isn’t what you wanted. So, what do you and most customers do? Press 0… and then 0… and then 0-0-0-0, until you get through to a real person.
By the time customers in this scenario reach the rep, they are irritated at the rep, as well as frustrated and angry at the company too. This potential negative effect can spread like wild-fire. When a customer is unhappy, they will tell 10 people as studies demonstrate.
Your phone menus and options may be designed to encourage customers to get the right help to avoid this bad customer experience, and have some sort of way out of the endless queue circle techniques, but does your website have it too?
Web menus often consist of FAQ pages, guidance documents, tutorial videos and live chat that attempt to direct the customer to the help they need in a web efficient manner. This doesn’t necessarily guarantee they will get the right help they need – it can potentially lead to dead-end pages that result in frustration. The usual customer web-user wants to find what they need in just three clicks.
If they haven’t found what they need in three clicks, it’s over and they may be looking at your competitor’s site next.
Finding tools and managing customer service through the web in order to make sure the customer gets the right information, allows customers to positively engage the site in minimal time. Allowing customers to self-service can lower costs and make the customer feel in control. Self-service adoption can also increase the brand’s power for the customer.
There are ways that you can help create a positive experience within your self-service options:
- Create clear messaging and guidance in your websites menu – Do some market research, and even some focus groups to understand what the customer needs, and how they are asking the questions. It will also help with your SEO efforts.
- Clear menu on the call- Make sure the customer is getting clear and easy guidance to get the support they need. I spoke to a customer representative recently who was with a satellite TV company based in the US. He said that they have an option on their phone menu that customers can select for different languages, however, they don’t have a team of people who receive from the different language route and can communicate in the chosen language. The rep can only offer that someone will call them back to assist. Both parties are frustrated and this drives additional outbound calls as well as a bad customer experience.
- Take a moment to look at your website menu navigation from the eyes of the customer
- Is it easy to use?
- Are you reaching dead ends?
- Does the flow of your website make sense or is it full of jargon that just leads to more user confusion?
These questions are factors that you must consider and can affect (or differentiate between) the creation of a frustrated user or a pleased one.
The bottom line: Make sure to keep your self-service, whether in your phone menus or on your website, focused on making the customer happy and keeping the messages and direction for use clear and simple.
Filed under: Business Process Improvement, Call Center, Communication, Customer Communication, Customer Experience, Customer Service, Proactive Customer Service, Web Based Self Service Tagged: | Business Processes, Call Center, Call centre, Communication, customer experience, Customer Management, Customer satisfaction, Customer Service, Self-service, Web Based Self-Service