November 22, 2011
Step 7 of my 10-step program on how to master your service experience is to think outside the customer service box.
We know that customers don’t choose to interact with you on a single communication channel from start to finish. They interact with you on whatever the most suitable channel for them at that point in time is — which could be via their mobile device, a chat session, a phone call, email, or web self-service from their iPad. This agile behavior is not limited to customer service; it extends to everything that we do, from buying to receiving marketing offers to getting service. Saying this another way, customers don’t make a distinction between a sales transaction and a customer service transaction. All they expect is to be able to receive the same customer experience every time they interact with a company, over any communication channel that they use. This point is very well illustrated in fellow Forrester analyst Brian Walker's report “Welcome To The Age Of Agile Commerce.”
More than that, customers expect personalized service targeted to their situation at hand. Customers expect you to know who they are, what products and services they have purchased, what issues they have had, over what channels they have used to contact you in the past, and what offers they have been presented with and either accepted or rejected. In addition, they would like to know whether you have read and responded to the feedback that they have given you.
To be able to deliver a personalized service experience, customer service applications need to be integrated with other systems that hold customer information and which live outside of the walls of a customer service organization, such as customer databases, commerce platforms, product recommendation engines, web content management systems, and marketing automation apps.
You need to identify the actions that customers are taking on your site so that you can support them through their entire journey with you — not just their customer service journey.
- agile commerce
- application development & delivery
- customer experience management
- customer relationship management (CRM)