In the past contact centres have often played a passive role in customer service by handling queries without considering the company’s overall customer service strategy.
However, contact centres have transformed to focus on customer engagement within the brand’s strategy. Increasingly, companies are recognising the importance delivering exceptional customer service to win long-term loyalty and increase retention.
A digital transformation
To build customer engagement, contact centres must make use of technology.
Just a few years ago contact centres operated completely differently to how they do now. Most companies had a ‘one size fits all’ approach, but today technology has advanced with mobile-responsive websites, live web chat and personalisation, allowing brands to build a strategy with their contact centre, based on what their customers respond to best. This has resulted in increased conversions.
Other tools which have become indespensible to contact centres include CRM software. Keep customer data to-hand for all team members at all times provides a much smoother communication process. Customers don’t want to be kept waiting so the more time you can save them without impacting on service, the better.
Changes in customer experience
While previously customers complained of multiple touch-points and process complexity, today contact centres are focusing on a more seamless experience. One that looks at being customer-focused and convenient.
Omnichannel is regarded as the future of customer experience. As channels ranging from social media to messaging are becoming equally valued by customers as picking up the phone.
Contact centres need to recognise which channels their customers prefer and are most responsive to make sure they are delivering the best service to their brands.
Whilst it’s important to offer seamless experiences across all channels for true omnichannel service, it’s more important to assess the channels regularly and determine which ones require the most support.
Similarly, engaging individually with customers on their preferred channels is vital to keeping them engaged as much as possible, and with more than two billion smartphone users in the world, mobile remains a critical component of the customer experience.
Developing the contact centre culture
There have been big changes in contact centre recruitment. Whilst previously there was a high turnover in contact centre staff, today companies are retaining their workforce through leadership programmes and a focus on a well-being culture.
Technology may help boost customer experiences, the humans behind the service interactions are essential to making customers feel valued.
Training service agents to provide a natural, personalised customer experience is essential to win trust and loyalty. Contact centre staff should be trained to address customers by name, be empathetic, and offer meaningful solutions whilst always retaining a professional and friendly tone.
With advanced technologies, well-trained team members and a proactive approach, contact centres can retain loyal customers for the long-term.