As more and more companies begin to compete on the basis of customer service, finding ways to strengthen customer experience and engagement is top of mind for many companies. But how can you truly stand out from your competitors in a saturated market?
Most companies will attempt to offer more customer service options, use higher-performance software, or simply attempt to wow customers more than their competitors.
However, all of these customer engagement solutions are still missing one key component: the right team.
Finding and implementing the right customer engagement software for your goals is essential—but having the right people on board is just as crucial. Whether you have an in-house team, a mixture of in-house and remote staff, or a fully outsourced team, these two key elements—the right software and the right people—will help your organization take customer experience to the next level.
In this article, our expert team will take you through some of the best customer engagement tools and solutions so you can move forward with the right strategies to strengthen your customer engagement.
Improving The Customer Experience
Of course, customer expectations are also changing—customers want more and expect more from their experiences with, and service from, brands. After all:
- 57% of customers say that customer service is a key factor in their brand loyalty.
- 50% of customers choose which channel to contact brands based on how quickly they need a response (i.e. choosing phone calls or live chat for immediate responses and email for less urgent requests).
- 76% of customers expect some sort of personalization in their customer experiences.
- 71% of customers want companies to know and remember their previous interactions with a brand—yet only 29% say this regularly happens.
Customer expectations aren’t just shifting—they’re growing. Customers want faster service, via more channels, with more personalization. And while most customers are coming to expect these things, brands don’t always deliver. Here’s how to set yourself apart from the crowd in these three areas:
Personalize, personalize, personalize. A little personalization goes a long way. 61% of customers say they feel they’re treated more like a case number than an individual, so brands who can take even small actions to personalize customer experiences—by making personalized recommendations based on history, offering a customized web experience, interacting with customers on their preferred channels, and so on—have a lot to gain.
Leverage omnichannel support. While the typical customer interacts with brands on three different channels to get support, a staggering 78% feel that a seamless, omnichannel support solution rarely, if ever, happens. Companies who want to excel in customer experiences should leverage true omnichannel solutions (including some omnichannel software discussed below) to give customers a more streamlined experience.
Provide a streamlined customer journey. From casual browsing to post-purchase support, the customer journey should be connected and seamless for the customer. Consumers don’t want to have to repeat themselves or start from scratch every time they contact you. CRM software or other customer engagement software should help you keep all customer interactions streamlined so your support team can offer high-quality service.
Customer Engagement Solutions: The Tools
So, how can you actually improve your personalization and offer a more streamlined customer journey? Having the right customer engagement tools in place is a great way to begin. Consider what features are most important for your current goals and KPIs and then have a look at our favorite customer engagement tools.
Call Center Solutions
For all-in-one call center solutions, Zendesk is one of the best-in-class software solutions. Originally, it only offered help desk solutions, but today, it offers a full-service contact center solution, with omnichannel messaging capabilities, self-service and AI solutions, intelligent routing, efficient agent tools, business analytics and more.
For contact centers that want to offer connected, seamless experiences for customers across a variety of channels—while keeping everything organized on the backend—Zendesk offers a great solution.
Genesys is another robust, full-service software that offers seamless and straightforward multi-channel support. With strong features for everything from phone to messaging to AI chatbots and more, Genesys is an excellent software for taking call center solutions to the next level—whether you’re managing just phones or a multitude of channels.
Live chat solutions are growing in popularity as more and more customers seek immediate support. Today’s customers are often more familiar with texting than with calling—and they want to interact with brands in a familiar way too.
Some full-service call center solutions offer live chat features as well, but you can also get software just for live chat too.
If you’re just upgrading your current software and solutions to include live chat, you can’t go wrong with, well, LiveChat. This live chat tool has tons of integrations and features, so it offers nearly endless use cases, and is a great solution for incorporating web chat or chatbots to your service channels. It’s also very easy to use, so you can get up and running quickly and effortlessly.
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Customers want to talk to brands using the same channels they use to talk to their friends and family—and Braze makes that easier for brands to manage. Braze offers a strong SMS solution, as well as other messaging solutions and integrations, plus in-depth analytics so organizations can leverage customer interactions and data for personalization.
Braze’s personalization and automation features also means you can trigger the appropriate outbound communication for stronger customer engagement.
Organizations should also keep in mind that engaging customers—especially through SMS—should also include some outbound support and marketing.
Upshot offers strong SMS features, alongside being a full customer engagement and gamification platform. After all, gamifying your customer engagement—whether you’re looking to get customer feedback, introduce a loyalty program, or just have customers connect with your brand more frequently—encourages customers to continue to take action. Upshot helps you do this across the entire customer lifecycle—not just when customers reach out to you for help.
When it comes to email and CRM, Hubspot is one of the most well-known and versatile software platforms, with capabilities for all of your customer-facing teams, from service and sales to marketing and content.
One of Hubspot’s most well-developed functions is as a CRM, which allows organizations to collect all customer data, interactions, web page views and more in one place—creating a central hub that everyone from customer service to marketing can access to personalize interactions and provide quality service.
Automation and AI
Today, many full-service tools already offer some automation and AI features, which are reshaping the way customer service is done—and the expectations customers have. However, you can also find specific tools catered to this if you need something specific to add to your stack.
Using customer data and AI, WebEngage helps you engage more customers through hyper-personalized communications and marketing. It also lets you connect with customers across many channels with automated, relevant communications. Not only does it help you automate your customer engagement, but it also helps create central views of customer data and information.
As the name suggests, ChurnZero helps subscription-based organizations reduce churn and improve customer engagement through automation and targeted, personalized customer care and support. Through automated re-engagement campaigns, personalized customer success solutions and customer analytics for more relevant customer engagement, ChurnZero is a great automation software to add to your stack for businesses that struggle with customer churn.
Customer Engagement Solutions: The People
When it comes to customer engagement solutions, software is just the first step—you also need to have the right team in place to manage the software and, of course, the actual customer interactions.
While any business can purchase a software package, organizations who have an expert in customer experience alongside them to provide strategy, expertise and empathy for your customers will be able to truly stand out from the crowd.
A partner like ROI Solutions can take you the extra mile—our team is here to help you find the right blend of tools that properly serve your needs as well as providing a team of experts to help you execute your goals and get the most of your software. We’re here to provide:
Through analyzing your business goals and needs, we’ll find the right blends of tools and services to meet your needs and achieve your goals, while also delighting customers and making your processes more efficient.
We’re experts in customer service—with experience in a variety of industries and with customer experience as a whole, we have a team who can properly execute on your strategy and with the best software for your team to achieve your goals.
Customer service starts with relationships. As you seek to engage customers, starting with personalized service and seeing customers as more than just a number is an essential place to begin. With the right team on hand, you can deepen customer loyalty and connection through empathy and relational service.
As a team that takes a human-first, customer-centric approach to customer service and engagement, we can partner with your team to provide the holistic customer engagement solutions you need. There’s no shortcut to great customer service—but if there was, it’d be ROI Solutions.
Connect with one of our experts today to see how ROI Solutions can help you find the customer engagement solutions you need.