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Are you looking to reduce your customer care costs? Customer service for any business can be expensive. It’s a 350-billion-dollar industry, but companies are losing $62 billion per year in customer service alone. With advanced and innovative customer service strategies, your business can save valuable money in no time.
Read on to understand 8 customer service strategies that can reduce your operational costs while delivering quality results.
Why is good customer service critical to business success?
Positive customer experiences and brand interaction are crucial to any business's success. Whether you’re selling tech products, cleaning services, pet supplies, furniture, or decor, satisfied customers want to share their positive experiences. Consumers share good customer service with nine other people, but they share it with up to 16 people when they have negative feedback.
Creating brand awareness through sharing positive feedback with family and friends isn’t the only bonus to good customer service. Viewers and consumers satisfied with your customer support services spend 140% more than unsatisfied customers. These happy customers are also more likely to support your brand for five years or longer, turning them into loyal customers. Just delivering consistent positive customer experiences reduces customer service costs by 33%.
Effective customer service isn’t limited to brands with higher revenue or spending more on their customer support budgets. Small or large businesses offering customer support can gain brand recognition, lead generation, a competitive advantage, and increased customer lifetime value. Customers are also more likely to refer to brands with excellent customer service, boosting organic growth, word-of-mouth marketing, and essential customer insights.
Top 8 strategies to reduce customer service costs
The three key KPIs that brands need to monitor and measure are managing the cost of customer service, customer satisfaction, the cost to serve, and customer retention.
Read on to explore 8 ideas planned around these KPIs to help reduce customer support costs.
1. Unify customer communication
Many customer support costs belong to grabbing, managing, sifting, consolidating, and making sense of customer communication. The costs can become much higher as customer queries come from many different support channels all at once. Digitally empowered customers inquire from multiple channels that they find better or faster. Customers can also send the same complaint from various channels to ensure their message is processed.
This allows customers and businesses to interact with customers on multiple platforms but can lead to an overpowering number of messages to respond to and less productivity.
Instead of accepting many different support channels, unify communications to one or two platforms. Create a platform that integrates all incoming communication like phone calls, video conferencing, screen sharing, emails, chats, and more. A cloud-based help desk software allows team members to track all issues in one place and cater to all communications efficiently.
How does unified communication reduce customer costs?
By keeping all customer communications in one place, brands can improve workflows and remove all bottlenecks. Investments to multiple channels will stop, customer support can be leveraged with FAQs and bots, and remote support can be delivered across all time zones.
Source: Conceive and convert
2. Encourage self-service with interactive videos
Recent working and shopping from home have made 100% of customer calls more challenging, increased escalations to 68%, and hold times by 34%. With more consumers having an online presence, interactive self-service videos are becoming a popular support choice.
Brands can equip customers with unparalleled convenience to troubleshoot their issues like never before. Videos are free from technical words, are highly entertaining, and are extremely easy for customers to consume. Instead of calling a customer service team for help, customers can watch a video first and troubleshoot their error by themselves.
How do interactive videos reduce customer costs?
Demo or explainer videos, customer support videos, live chat videos, and knowledge-based videos are free to make with Clipchamp's online video editor. Videos can be shared to multiple platforms for free, and viewers can watch them for no extra cost. Instead of using human resources to troubleshoot a customer complaint, customers can watch a video online.
3. Agent training and retention
A company spends around US$4000 and 24 days to fill a vacant position within the business. Instead of letting go of agents that are not producing optimal results, focus on hiring the right agent and training and retaining them. Before hiring employees, check their skill set, motivation, ability to learn, and overall work ethic are a right fit for the job.
Once you have the right fit for the position, continue to train the employees rather than hire new ones. Employee training is an ongoing process that needs to be updated. Be sure to adopt a positive, engaging, and employee-centric organizational culture to help retain staff. Incentivization, recognition, and empowerment are ways to increase employee retention rates.
How does agent training and retention reduce customer costs?
Eliminate multiple different hiring processes and avoid spending US$4000. Instead of letting staff go, find the right employees, and train them. Your company can save money and time.
4. Automate repetitive tasks using customer support software
Automation provides a comprehensive way to reduce customer support business costs. Selecting the right help desk software allows businesses to automate workflows and eliminate dependence on manual tasks. Team members can collaborate across departments and unlock improved team productivity.
Take a look at the various ways help desk software can reduce customer service costs.
Automated ticket routing
Innovative help desk software tools have automated ticket routing routines that automatically distribute tickets among your support agents. The distribution provides tickets to the most capable agents to resolve them.
Instead of manually typing a response for every customer query, your agents can respond with an appropriate canned response. These responses can be customized as well, keeping the situation in mind.
Track key performance indicators (KPIs)
Intuitive help desk software tools come with custom settings for KPIs for customer support staff. Set KPIs, monitor and measure them to have a fine grip over the workplace productivity and a granular vision into every support activity. A full-fledged AI-powered customer help desk is one of the best ways to deliver efficient customer service with reduced operational costs.
5. Gathering customer feedback and taking action
There’s no better way to improve customer service than asking customers directly for their feedback. See which channels your consumers prefer and consider eliminating the not-so-popular ones. Share achievements and the latest initiatives from feedback collection activities, so customers feel valued.
How does customer feedback reduce customer costs?
Receiving customer feedback means businesses no longer have to guess customers' support needs and preferences. Doing this reduces customer support costs by delivering exactly what customers want. Eliminate unnecessary investments into new tools or techniques that might not only be out of your budget but irrelevant to current support goals.
6. Using chatbots for customer support
Customers usually don’t want to wait for a customer service response, making chatbots extremely beneficial to brand communication. Chatbots are ideal employees as they’re always online, never on leave, constantly available, and immune to fatigue or emotional challenges.
AI-powered chatbots learn over time and can present intelligent responses to rich queries. They’re also great for collecting relevant context for your support agents.
Chatbots work well in businesses as they deliver CX right inside the chat window. They are armed with the power of technology and advanced data processing to present responses engagingly. These capabilities allow them to help save on customer service training costs.
Source: Mastercard Newsroom
7. Live chat support
Live chat can help reduce customer support costs in a short time. They allow businesses to reach customers before they reach out. Live chat support is proactive customer service or support, allowing minimal service costs.
Live chat reduces customer support costs by increasing operational efficiencies. Studies show that live chats are 17-30% cheaper than call-based support. Automate live chats equip agents with chat histories to keep up to date with customer support. As the agents no longer have to dig for the contextual information, they can reduce the wait times and deliver timely responses.
Smart live chat software tools come with data analytics and reporting features to cater to staff training needs. These tools create content in posts or articles for employee training and self-service portals.
Businesses can set proactive customer greetings or welcome messages to offer several different customer service options.
8. Community portal
An online community portal is not only educational for agent training and in-house referencing but results in reduced operational costs by as much as 32.9% year-over-year.
Community portals are self-service portals where customers can first check for similar queries and use the solutions that worked for them. Community portals aim to reduce ticket volume, and customers can react to the posts, or comment on them, to spread the word around.
Support agents can also refer to the community portal to find solutions for any new or complex trending query. Instead of directly escalating the question, they can answer any other related query and provide a resolution in less time.
Connect community portals to ticketing systems to check query history and see whether a previous solution worked for them or not.
Support your customers without big bills
Remember to consider feedback from your customers and always make sure customers are satisfied. Good luck with your CX goals!
When you're ready to create customer support videos, make HD videos for free using Clipchamp. Our in-built screen and webcam recorder is so simple that you can drag, drop and edit your explainer videos in minutes. Make a video now.