It is no secret that customers have become increasingly demanding in recent years. One reason for their increased demands is the evolution of a digital culture in which gratification is only a click away. As a result, when a customer experiences an issue with the service or product in which he or she has invested time or money, a lightning-fast resolution is expected. In an attempt to deliver a quick response to customers, many companies have built customer service portals. However, these portals do not always offer the functionality required to satisfy demanding customers.
Customers today have higher expectations than ever before. Being placed on hold for even two or three minutes or waiting hours for an email response can be unacceptable to many people. In addition, repeated surveys have indicated that customers overwhelmingly want greater control over their buying experience, from initial research to tracking shipments in transit.
They can access a knowledge base of troubleshooting tips, check their purchase history or find helpful tutorials. Many questions or issues can be resolved without the customer ever needing to speak to or email a CSR. Representatives can devote more time to issues that cannot be resolved through the portal, while customers receive answers more quickly and with less friction. Self-service portals need not be a cloud solution. In-house deployments allow businesses to retain control over the portal and the underlying data. Security measures can be tailored to match the needs of the business or industry-specific regulations.
Marketing campaigns can be personalized and targeted for each customer or for a group of customers. Reminders or suggestions, such as service appointments or deadlines to purchase items covered by a free shipping promotion, are easily passed to the customer. Sales representatives have more time to work leads or devote to customers whose issues cannot be resolved through the portal.
In today's competitive economy, it is important to give customers what they want -- and one thing they want is the ability to choose self-service. An online portal is an easy solution to help meet their needs.
Joe Lewis is the owner and president of PhaseAlpha, a custom software company that develops solutions for businesses of all sizes in all industries. We can help you with a custom solution for your customer web portal. To learn more, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (888) 559-5673.