Admit it. There has to be a better way to serve your customers. Recently, I had a question about a pair of shoes offered by an online company. With limited information available on the website, I decided to call the company. After pressing “6” for product questions, I camped out listening to an electro-version of Dancing Queen for ten minutes. Then, you know what I did? I hung up. That’s right. I blew my place in a likely long line of customers waiting for help. It was a bold move, I know. But I value my time, and it didn’t seem worth it to me to spend my time waiting when I could go somewhere else. Evidently, I’m not alone.
According to NewVoiceMedia, 27 percent of customers switch to a different company because they were kept on hold for too long. There are other factors that play into poor customer service like rude staff, difficulty getting product or service information, shoddy product, or being passed off to somebody else endlessly before you can even explain what you need. And that lack of service is hitting companies where it hurts most—their profits. NewVoiceMedia research found that poor customer service is costing businesses up to $62 million every year.
Here’s the thing: your customers deserve better treatment. More importantly, they know that. If you are looking for ways to compete in the customer service arena, now is the time to explore Salesforce Community Cloud technology. Here are three big reasons why:
1. Offer a self-service forum
If you are like most customer service departments, you’ve spent a lot of time and money trying to predict the daily influx of customer calls and schedule staff to handle them. But we all know that this process isn’t foolproof, and, inevitably, customers will end up waiting on hold. Or, worse, they’ll hang up. “Customers are expecting your best,” says Amanda Nelson. “Things happen quickly in the digital age, so when customers have a question, it needs to be answered fast. Sales and service teams need to have everything at their fingertips—even from the road.”
We want to provide the best customer service. That means taking note of the habits of today’s customers. “Our research shows that web and mobile self-service interactions overtake all other channels,” says Kate Leggett, vice-president, principal analyst at Forrester. “Survey respondents reported using web or mobile self-service more than speaking with an agent over the phone.” Ding! There’s the bell. It’s time to ring in a higher level of customer service.
With Community Cloud, businesses can offer their full attention to customers by providing easy online access to the most frequently asked questions. This means customers can find the answers they need anytime and anywhere. Should they need specific answers, or if they have a unique situation, then a personal contact with customer service is still available.
2. Bring a “community feel” to your customer service forum
Sometimes the best people to handle your customers are the customers themselves. With Community Cloud, your FAQ page becomes a living, breathing community of customers who can offer information and advice, answer questions, and share valuable feedback. A personalized feed makes it easy for users to find specific product or service information and talk with self-made experts who can share insight based on their own experience. This is where your commitment to providing excellent customer service can really shine.
At Simplus, we appreciate the thoughtful feedback we receive from our customers. Salesforce products such as Community Cloud offer a dizzying array of services, and it’s helpful to hear how other customers are using this technology. Customer service is definitely evolving, and Salesforce is ready to help streamline the process and help your business build lasting relationships with your customers.
3. Get to know your customers
Do you wonder who is using your product or services? Have a look. They are part of your Community Cloud Forum. Your customers are social, mobile, and sophisticated. “With a wealth of information at their fingertips, your customers use knowledge as power,” says Nelson. “From finding experts in communities to mastering comparison-shopping on the go, they learn about products from many places to find just the right match for their needs.”
By giving your customers the tools to make informed purchasing decisions; discuss products within open forums; and handle their online accounts, payments options, shipping status, and personal information, and do it all at the time that is most convenient for them, your business will become part of a growing community: the Community Cloud, that is. Welcome to the neighborhood.
If you would like more information about Community Cloud or other services that can help you better connect with customers, call us! We can help. We are Simplus.