Customer support self-service has been around for many years, but in 2020 is more important than ever before. As Gartner states in its article, “5 Customer Service Tech Trends in 2020”, Self-service is king. Some of the drivers of self service royalty include….
- Firstly, as a result of the pandemic quarantines, many more employees and customers are working from home. As a result, they have to rely more heavily on self-help technology, and less on day to day human interactions.
- Secondly, the pandemic has driven up customer service demand in many businesses. Offering excellent, customer self-service provides another channel for customers to solve problems.
- Lastly, many companies have had to reduce costs as a result of Covid-19’s impact to their business. Self-service can help deflect phone calls, and reduce the cost of service.
My Self-Service Quest…
Considering this increase in self service importance, I was recently on a quest to gather the most up to date, best in class approaches. I came up with 10 key tenets.
By following these 10 key tenets and with the right self-service strategy and execution, organizations can simultaneously improve customer experience and reduce operational costs.
10 Key Tenets For Customer Self-Service Success
- Accessibility: The customer self-service options are easy to find. They are available across channels. For example, may use mobile, web and social. Self-service is built into the product at the precise places where customers need it most.
- Ease of use: Self service is easy to navigate and use to solve problems or answer questions. In addition, the business posts Frequently Asked Questions, a.k.a FAQs.
- Consistency: The customer experience is consistent across self service channels. Branding in self-service is consistent with branding across the end to end customer lifecycle.
- Searchability: The self-service search function is google-like. It scans content across channels and serves up highly relevant search results. Customers can easily filter results.
- Businesses can supercharge search by allowing verbal searches and using voice recognition in addition to typing words.
- Content Relevance: The content within the self-service channels is in a formal knowledge base. It is kept up to date, is accurate and relevant. The content is pulled from a “single source of truth”.
- Content Variation: The content within self service is not simply written documentation. It also includes video, audio and screenshots. Customers may exchange information in online forums.
- Personalization: Customer experiences work flows leverage personalization using customer history, data and behavior. Tools such as machine learning or AI may boost personalization options.
- Automation: The self-service experience leverages automated work flows to help customers find the information they need swiftly with the fewest key strokes. Self service proactively suggests content based on customer actions. Also, chatbots or automated assistants may enhance the experience. (To learn more, check out my earlier blog post, “3 Ways AI Will Enhance Your Customer Experience.”)
- Adoption: Customers use and find value in the self service channels. As a result, adoption is increasing over time.
- Measuring Success: The business measures customer facing and business facing metrics to measure customer self-service success.
- Need ideas? Click the download button, to get a copy of our our free, one page PDF with self-service measurement recommendations.
In conclusion, by following these key tenets with the right self-service strategy and execution, organizations can simultaneously improve customer experience and reduce operational costs.
Did I miss anything? Please add your customer self-service ideas in the comments.
© 2020, Marci Reynolds. All rights reserved.