Keeping Up with Your Customers in Today’s Retail Environment

Maria Spanicciati

Content Marketer, Gladly

Read Time

6 minute read

As customer expectations shift and the digital transformation sweeps through the world of commerce, exceptional customer service has become more than just nice to have—with endless options now conveniently available online, great customer support is essential to building brand loyalty and driving continued growth.

We’ve put together a couple of tips to help you keep up with your customers—and stay ahead of the competition.

Meeting your customers on the channels they use

While calling by phone is still the most popular way to reach customer support, an increasing number of consumers now prefer other options like chat and text.

Brands that want to provide the most convenient, comfortable support experience for their customers will need to offer support for new channels like chat messaging, SMS, and social media so that customers can reach your team on the channels they already prefer.

This means that a customer support platform that offers seamless cross-channel support is a worthwhile investment. Today’s customers will often use multiple channels to reach out to your support team, depending on which are most convenient at the time. If your agents are using a traditional ticket-and-case-based system each of these interactions might result in a separate ticket—but the majority of consumers now say that they expect your agents to be able to see their conversation history across all channels.

To avoid confusion, lost efficiency, and irritated shoppers, it’s worth switching to an integrated customer service platform, so your agents can easily view and respond to your customers across all channels.

Personalized experiences are key

Most consumers report that they’re more likely to make repeat purchases from brands that make them feel known and offer personalized recommendations.

This alone should give most brands plenty of reason to take note—but the importance of personalized service to your customers can’t be overstated. In fact, 79% of consumers say that personalized service is more important to them than personalized marketing, and 28% would even pay extra for a more personalized experience.

Building a reputation for service with a personal touch can also help grow your customer base. Most consumers report that they’re more likely to recommend your brand to friends and family—or even write you a glowing review on review sites and social media—if your brand offers them a more personalized service experience.

So how should your brand go about making the service experience feel personal? Start by empowering your agents with the tools they need to get to know your customers.

Your support team should have a service platform that lets them build and view customer profiles with ease—so they can know the customer they’re dealing with as a person, even before the support conversation begins. Having access to basic information about a customer and their conversation history can help your agents make personalized recommendations and avoid asking customers to repeat themselves.

Efficiency still matters

While today’s customers have higher expectations for personalized support, they still want their issues resolved quickly and efficiently. Respondents to Gladly’s surveys report that they expect a response to live chat messages within a minute, and expect to wait no longer than five minutes for a response by text.

Even when reaching out by email, your customers want a response within a reasonable time frame. You may be thinking of an email response within a twelve-hour window as reasonably fast—but your customers expect a response to their emails in three to four hours. 

What does all of this mean? That even the most exceptional, personalized service will still frustrate your customers if it takes all day to access. Consider streamlining your support process with a customer service platform that eliminates duplicate tickets. Offering robust self-service options can also speed up your agents’ response times by allowing your customers to answer basic or routine questions themselves.

Check out Gladly’s full webinar

For more tips and information on the ways your company can keep up with its customers, check out Gladly’s full webinar with Barb Menchhofer here.

And if you’re ready to invest in the right tech to take your service experience to the next level, try the demo of Gladly’s unique, all-in-one customer service platform—designed to make keeping up with your customers streamlined and effortless.

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