First things first. What is customer service technology?

It’s making sure your systems, technology (eg: apps, shopping cart etc) and strategies are all working seamlessly together to deliver the very best in customer service.

With online shopping and online support not just commonplace today, but preferred by many, customer service technology is a fundamental part of any successful business.  Here’s what you’ll see a lot more of (and should include in your business strategy) in 2021.

Omnichannel support

Never has bit been easier to contact a business to get a customer’s concerns or questions across.  Social media, live chat, email, phone, SMS, texting and a company’s website make it instant and easy for customers to contact you. Gone are the days when people say, “fax me and we’ll do lunch!”

Social Media

Every business needs to be on one social media channel and no business should ever try to be on more than three.  Social media means targeting new customers through preferred audiences (interests, demographics and location) and reconnecting with existing customers.

Artificial Intelligence (A1) Chat

Countdown (a subsidiary of Woolworths NZ) do this beautifully.  A series of common questions and scenarios are answered by “Olive”. Online queries, Covid information, store information, order refunds and even Christmas ideas are some of the questions you can ask Olive to avoid lengthy wait times via phone or email.

A1 chat not only provides most customers immediate solutions, but it also reduces the number of staff needed to man the phones for customers wanting to talk directly to a customer service representative.  This is a win-win with budget cuts and satisfied customers.  Furthermore, it offers 24/7 assistance.

Video chat

Video chat allows you to interact directly with your customers via your website or mobile apps.  This strategy builds trust with customers, offers transparency, and maximises the likelihood of conversion rates.

The popularity of video chat proves that even though consumers enjoy the convenience of faceless technology such as live chat or texting, as people, we still enjoy (and trust) human interaction.

Video recording is slightly different where pre-recorded video messages are shared with customers about promotions, how-to guides, FAQ’s and new products.