The Latest Customer Service Trends for 2021
At the beginning of this year, some trends were already announced in the field of customer service.
In this article, we will take a look at how realistic those predictions were and what we can expect from the rest of this year.
What are the latest developments, which (former) trends can we say goodbye to and what do we expect in the future?
We will discuss this in this all-encompassing customer service article. We will start right away and give an update on the latest trends here.
You probably already know what good customer service consists of. So let’s straight into the trends of this year and the future.
Improve Customer Loyalty
One of the biggest trends of recent years is improving customer loyalty and retention through customer service. Although customer service departments were previously seen as a cost center, more companies are seeing that good customer service can actually make money.
Customer service departments are increasingly seen as profit centers instead of cost centers. This means that a customer service department no longer exists only to solve problems but also to generate income.
This can be done, for example, by upselling. Relationships with existing customers are optimized with a proactive approach. For example, interactivity and communication are improved to provide a better customer experience.
Research has shown that loyal customers spend up to 30% more than new customers. Investing in your existing customers is, therefore, a lot more interesting than spending a lot of money on new customers for whom it is not yet certain how much they will spend.
If all goes well, you already have a profile of existing customers so you know what you can capitalize on. By thinking along with your customers as a customer service representative and by building a good profile of wishes and previous purchases, the customer will trust you and will think of you for the next purchase.
A satisfied, loyal customer will also start recruiting new customers for you.
A customer service that improves loyalty and the bond with the customer will eventually generate more money than it actually costs. This source of income can then be spent on expanding your marketing activities or improvements to your website, to name but two examples.
How Can You Improve Your Customer Loyalty?
With the focus on customer loyalty on the rise, more and more companies are realizing that customer service can make money for the company. However, this requires a smart approach. We’ll give you a few tips:
Use a good CRM. We just mentioned the customer profile. Previous conversations can be logged here but you can also look at previous purchases and other activities of your customer.
You can also think of loyalty programs that you can start to have customers come back to you more often. However, the most successful seem to be professional, helpful, and friendly customer service.
This makes the customer feel at home. A knowledgeable employee who responds to the needs of the customer in a friendly tone can even be a key player for your company at such times and even take on the role of sales representative.
The Rise of Voice Search
Searches are increasingly happening through the use of voice.
Although a few years ago at Sortlist we already saw how the spoken word in apps and on websites became more and more important, we see as a customer service trend for the coming years that “voice” will become bigger and bigger.
This means that customers will increasingly be able to communicate on a website by using their voice. Voice searches are already quite a thing on Google, but in the future, we expect links on your web browser and a chatbot that responds to spoken messages from the website visitor.
The possibilities of voice solutions are expanding. There are already chatbots that can automatically convert voice messages into written text and our expectation is that more and more companies will start processing voice commands.
The big difference with telephone customer service is that the website visitor does not have to do any additional action. Think about typing in a phone number or searching for the phone.
The Growth of Omnichannel
A trend that has been around for a while, but one that we can expect to see more and more of in the future is the creation of an omnichannel structure.
This means that you offer a customer experience where your customers can reach you in their preferred way.
You create an omnichannel culture by using one platform where all your questions and customer interactions come in.
If a customer tweets something or sends an Instagram DM, it comes in on the same (CRM) system. You don’t have to switch between different platforms anymore and this way you can respond immediately.
An omnichannel culture has a number of conditions. For example, you lower the threshold for your customers to contact you and it becomes very easy for your customer service agents or even social media operators to respond to questions.
Fast responses and an improved customer experience!
Less Traditional, More Digital
With working from home as the new norm, more and more people and therefore customers have found out about the convenience of home shopping.
This means that more and more companies are also making the shift to digital. For example, there is a huge growth in online product videos on Youtube but also instructional clips.
Companies are also using their social media more to hold Q&A sessions (question and answer) with their audience. This change seems to be permanent. More and more offline activities are taking place online and that has its advantages.
If you need some help setting up your business online, don’t hesitate to ask some help from experts in a digital strategy agency to get. youstarted.
It is precisely because not every company has responded to this digitization that there are opportunities here. It even looks a bit like a digital revolution. By working with chatbots, interactive videos, and flexibility now, you will probably be ahead of your competitors.
We have come to live in an almost contactless society. By now, because we are customers ourselves, we know that customers have an increasing need for these technologies.
Whether it is the use of voice apps, (contactless) deliveries at any time of the day, or a zoom call with customers, the digitalisation of society is a fact. We expect to see a revolution in digital customer service in the coming years.
Conclusion: Customer Service Trends From 2021 to 2023
Trends come and go but we honestly don’t expect the above customer service trends to disappear any time soon.
In fact, our prediction is that digitization in the customer service area is only in its infancy. Approaching customer service as a profit center instead of a cost center is a change we welcome, provided it happens in the right way. After all, nobody is waiting for “salesy” customer service employees who focus more on selling than on providing service.
The digitization of customer service is a trend we cannot ignore. Moving with the times now can ensure that you are and stay one step ahead of the competition. Moreover, you are already giving customers the extra service that they will become accustomed to in the future, so you are not behind the times.