Most trends come and go quickly, but some of them totally transform the world around us. This is why it’s important for any business to stay on top of customer service trends. By knowing what strategies are popular with other companies, your business will keep up with the times and have a better chance to grow in new and exciting ways. Here are some of the most buzz-worthy emerging trends in customer service in 2020.
1. Mobile Optimization
The average person spends 3 hours and 15 minutes on a smartphone every day, with the top users spending even longer. And these numbers don’t account for other mobile devices like iPads and Kindles.
Clearly, if your business isn’t optimizing for mobile, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity. So, how can you make the most of mobile? Start by making sure your website is easy to use on a mobile device. Then, create an SMS marketing plan that allows you to reach your customer base via text messages.
2. Social Media Customer Service
Hopefully, you’re already using social media as a marketing tool, but are you using it for customer service? In 2020, more consumers than ever will be heading to Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter to resolve customer service issues. Rather than directing these customers to your customer service phone lines or email, you’ll boost satisfaction rates by resolving issues right within the social media platform.
3. AI and Chatbots
Artificial intelligence is developing at a rapid pace, and it has been forecasted that around 80% of companies could be using chatbots by this year. Chatbots are getting smarter all the time, so you’ll have even more incentive to integrate them into your website and live chat systems.
AI shouldn’t replace your agents completely. Instead, consider innovative ways to use chatbots so your customer service agents have more time to creatively solve problems and personally connect with customers.
4. Telecommuting Agents
Want to hire the best talent without having to worry about physical barriers? Telecommuting resolves these two needs at the same time. Not only will you be able to hire without the limitations of proximity but also be able to cut office space costs by having agents who work from home. Hiring telecommuting agents is easier than ever with the technology of 2020, and it allows you to serve a wider customer base by offering customer service in more time zones.
5. Live Chat
Consumers are busier than ever in 2020, and they’re looking for ways to multitask while at work, surfing the internet, or streaming their favorite TV show. Live chat is one of the newest, most convenient ways to meet the needs of these customers. Adding this feature to your website will make your customers happy, and it benefits your business too. Your agents will be able to help multiple customers at once, saving you time, cutting costs, and increasing efficiency across the board.
6. Omnichannel Customer Service
Imagine that a customer reaches out to your company via Twitter, wanting to make a return but not sure how to go about it. Your agent sends him a phone number to call, and when he calls the number, another agent asks him to explain the situation all over again. That agent directs him to send an email to the company, which will then give him the chance to print a return label. Sounds like quite the runaround, right?
This is why an omnichannel customer service experience is so important in 2020. What does it do? It creates a seamless customer service structure that keeps the information about a customer and her current inquiries on every platform. This can increase efficiency and boost customer satisfaction.
7. Live Video Chat
Live chats and phone calls are convenient ways to help the majority of your customers. But what about when your customers need to show you the product or need help with assembly?
Even a traditional customer service phone call isn’t much help in those situations. And sometimes manuals and instructional videos aren’t enough to resolve every problem. This is where live video chat comes in. Many companies are already using this tool to enhance their customer service capabilities, and the trend will grow even more popular in 2020.
8. Humanized Customer Service
In 2020, brands are no longer just a business, but another form of human connection. Customers want to really connect to the companies they support, rather than mindlessly throwing their money out to another corporation.
Train your agents to show their human side when appropriate. Find ways to distinguish your company from competitors by establishing strong branding that appeals to the emotions of your customers.
9. Personalized Customer Experience
One of the major ecommerce customer service trends that is not going away is this: Consumers have more online shopping options than ever before. Set your company apart by delivering a customer service experience that’s personalized for individual consumers.
Use your customer data to deliver customized marketing messages just when they need them. Keep a record of each customer’s purchase history and use it as a reference during customer service calls. 93% of companies who developed this type of personalization strategy saw revenue growth in 2019, and those numbers will continue to grow in 2020.
10. Proactive Customer Service
It’s not enough to wait around for your customers to come to you when they need help in 2020. Customers want the whole shopping experience to be easier than ever. They’re seeking companies who reach out to them before they have to make any effort. Bump up your customer satisfaction rates by:
- Sending emails to track shipping and follow up on abandoned carts
- Creating a call-back system rather than making customers wait on the line
- Trying other proactive approaches to your customer service strategy
Adapting Trends to Your Business
Now that you’ve learned some of the most popular customer service trends for 2020, it’s time to decide which ones you can adapt to your business. Don’t be afraid to experiment. If something isn’t working right away, switch up your strategy.
At the same time, practice patience with a strategy if you really believe in it. Many trends catch on because they’re effective, and it will be worth it to give it time and see what it can do for your business. Jump aboard the best trends, and ride them into a successful conclusion to 2020!