There are three elements to a good customer service experience: speed, experience, and resolution. Everything that goes into optimizing customer service should focus on improving those three elements. It makes sense: nobody wants to be kept waiting, nobody wants to be brushed off, and nobody is OK with “I don’t know” as an answer.
There are already plenty of resources out there that tell you how to improve your customer service teams. But beyond what goes on in your call centers, the quality of your customer service is also determined by the fundamental operations of your commerce systems. For example, Forrester research demonstrates that customers expect proactive outbound communication, which includes notifying your customers when packages ship and when they should arrive. If your current commerce setup doesn’t allow for automated shipping notifications, you are missing opportunities to deliver customer satisfaction.
Your commerce setup also determines what your customer service team can (or can’t) do. Many warehouses don’t allow any changes to an order – even for something as simple as an address change – once it reaches them. If your customer service team can’t change a shipping address or expedite a package, no matter how polite and how responsive they are, it will be a terrible experience for the customer.
Most importantly, your commerce infrastructure can also determine how fast your agents can resolve issues. It’s great if you can train a great customer service team that responds quickly and stays on top of every ticket. But none of it will matter if your customer service team (and more importantly, your customer) is always waiting for answers from your fulfillment or your development teams.
Since most commerce setups are usually a stack of 3rd-party systems that are barely able to work together, the likelihood of customer-facing issues is high. More importantly, the ability to go in and fix these errors is weakened. If your team has to go through three different interfaces (one for your store, one for your inventory, one for your wholesale business) to track down an issue and solve it, there’s no amount of optimization or process improvement that can consistently create a good customer service experience. 95% of customers are willing to give a brand a second chance if their first issue was resolved quickly and effectively, but that number drops sharply if their experience with your service was neither.
And since customers expectations are growing and shifting, it might be time to start thinking about your current commerce infrastructure and its ability to meet those expectations. Being unable to meet customer expectation leads to stagnation. Keep in mind that only 4% of unsatisfied customers complain about their experience, so if you can’t provide an amazing experience for that 4%, how can you expect to create an amazing experience for all of your customers?
If you want to find out more about how commerce-as-a-service can empower all facets of your brand – including customer service – reach out to one of our commerce experts and we’d be glad to talk. We’ll give a free consultation on how commerce-as-a-service can lift growth barriers and provide a strong foundation for your brand’s continual rise.