Omnichannel Customer Support Helps You Forge Better Customer Relationships and Stand Out in Your Industry
Omnichannel marketing and customer support aim to create a harmonious customer experience. Indeed, both approaches strengthen cross-channel customer relationships. While omnichannel marketing seeks to support customers pre-sale, omnichannel customer support focuses on post-sale experiences. In this blog post, we focus on the most important benefit of omnichannel customer support: building relationships with customers.
Today’s digital landscape has perpetuated the expectation for fast, responsive, and convenient service. This has resulted in an increasing demand for omnichannel customer service—a key element in building strong customer relationships.
4 Key Benefits of Building Relationships With Customers Through Omnichannel Support
The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically shifted customer trends, prompting customers to expect greater convenience and control over their purchasing decisions.
Instead of communicating with brands through a single channel, customers prefer an integrated and holistic experience across several channels.
A Harvard Business Review study reports that by providing a seamless customer experience through several digital channels, companies can gain an advantage over competitors. Additionally, the study reveals that omnichannel customers enjoy interacting with a brand’s touchpoints through a variety of channels.
These omnichannel customer service options include live chats (via chatbots and customer service representatives), phone calls, in-app SMS messaging, social media, emails, and text messages, to name a few.
Good customer support is an integral part of a successful customer experience. It builds loyalty and helps customers attain their desired outcomes. As a result, excellent customer experiences have the power to expand a brand’s customer base and build a positive reputation and increased loyalty.
iQor, a managed services provider of customer engagement and technology-enabled business process outsourcing (BPO) solutions, helps the world’s top brands design intelligent optimization strategies to ensure their channels are perfectly aligned with customer needs. Whether artificial intelligence (AI)-powered digital agents with a human feel or in-app messaging, iQor’s omnichannel experience helps brands build lasting relationships with customers.
What follows are some key benefits of an omnichannel approach to customer support in building rewarding customer relationships.
Increased Customer Retention
Good customer service opens a gateway to convert buyers into repeat customers. Omnichannel support that is part of a larger digital transformation strategy uses customer relationship management software and artificial intelligence tools to merge offline and online customer experiences. It allows for a more tailored customer experience, reducing churn and improving customer retention.
What’s more, good omnichannel support provides the capability to promptly respond to customer complaints regardless of the channels they use—from voice to chat to social media. Simply providing a response to customer concerns dramatically improves customer satisfaction.
Optimized Agent Interactions
Seamless omnichannel integration provides a connected customer experience across multiple different channels. With the help of intelligent automation, mundane tasks can be addressed through omnichannel support channels while simultaneously freeing up time for live customer service agents to focus on more complex interactions.
This capability can improve myriad metrics such as average handle time (AHT) and first call resolution, making for a better customer experience and a better agent experience. Further, omnichannel offerings provide agents the opportunity to interact with customers through digital channels instead of just voice—making for a better employee experience for those who prefer digital channels.
When customers have queries about a brand’s products or services, they expect an expedited response—regardless of the channel used. They might want to connect by voice with a live customer service representative at a contact center or turn to social media for an immediate reply. Some customers may prefer live chat.
It’s imperative that all touchpoints work together seamlessly to guide customers in a single direction. An experienced digital BPO partner like iQor can create a smooth omnichannel customer experience that creates efficiencies across all service channels.
Improved Customer Satisfaction
Customer satisfaction depends heavily on the quality of customer support with 93% of customers likely to repeat purchases with brands that offer excellent customer service. And the relationship extends beyond simply the product purchase itself. Some customers follow up with queries about product usage or comments about their purchasing experience. An effective omnichannel customer engagement strategy makes their journey easier and ensures a connected and intuitive experience that generates smiles across channels.
Expanded Customer Access and Engagement
Lastly, omnichannel customer support builds customer relationships by understanding and offering customer-preferred channels. By understanding the channels that customers are more likely to use, customer support can be structured accordingly to improve access and ensure fast response times. By providing excellent support that is consistent and streamlined across multiple channels, customers can enjoy a personalized experience that makes them feel valued and reinforces their brand loyalty.
Lifetime Value of Customer Relationships Increases With Omnichannel Support
Customer lifetime value is a key indicator for understanding customers. It predicts the value that a customer relationship can bring to any business. Customer lifetime value data helps businesses decide which resources to invest in to win new customers and retain existing ones. Not surprisingly, the integrated customer experience generated by seamless and responsive omnichannel support increases a customer’s lifetime value.
Lifetime Value and Its Impact on Businesses
Monitoring customer lifetime value provides insight into the health of a business, ensuring that existing acquisition and retention tactics contribute to business growth. If lifetime value trends show troubling performance, adjustments can be made to improve the bottom line.
- Customer lifetime value can be calculated to better understand customer retention. According to 81% of marketers, monitoring customer lifetime value over time strengthens customer relationships and boosts sales.
- This value helps brands determine how much to invest in retaining customers and helps define marketing strategies, build customer loyalty, and improve retention.
- Customer lifetime value informs how brands manage customer relations, increasing overall profitability.
Omnichannel customer service fulfills various customer preferences by allowing engagement in their preferred channel. BPOs like iQor gather business intelligence data to provide insight into which channels to offer, meeting customer expectations and improving customer interactions to create excellent CX that strengthens customer relationships and elevates the brand.
Calculating Lifetime Value of Customers
There are several formulas for calculating customer lifetime value; the main goal is to choose one and stick to it. The traditional formula for calculating customer lifetime value multiplies the customer value by the average customer life span. Other factors to consider include:
- Customer retention rate.
- Customer churn rate.
- Average profit margins of each customer.
By analyzing customer data, customer lifetime value can be further refined to determine historical and predictive customer value. The former is the total gross profit from a customer’s previous purchases. The latter focuses on customer transactional habits to predict their future actions. These insights can inform omnichannel support offerings to ensure excellent customer experiences that expand lifetime value.
Building Relationships With Existing Customers Through Omnichannel Support Costs Less
Nurturing existing customer relationships is important not only to strengthen a brand, but also to save costs. Studies show that acquiring a new customer is 5% to 25% more expensive than retaining an existing one, considering the time, energy, and resources needed to earn new customers.
Business growth depends significantly on maintaining relationships with customers. When customers sense they are cherished, they become loyal and are less likely to switch to a competitor.
Not only do businesses save costs by satisfying existing customers, but they also harness a critical asset for growth. Here’s how sound omnichannel support for loyal customers is less expensive than for new ones:
- Knowing the preferences of repeat customers enables a personalized omnichannel service. Targeting new customers comes with a set of challenges. For instance, investing money across channels without knowing customers’ unique needs and desires may not actually convert potential customers to new customers.
- Post-sale omnichannel support is more affordable than targeting new customers pre-sale. Attracting potential customers requires a lot of investment such as running advertisements on Google, social media channels, and elsewhere. That’s not the case for existing customers.
- The success rate of selling to existing customers is 60% to 70%, much higher than the 5% to 20% success rate for new customers. Omnichannel customer support offers a higher likelihood of satisfying customers, deepening bonds, and boosting sales than targeting new ones who might not know about the brand or products.
The Power of Word-of-Mouth Marketing in Omnichannel Support
Omnichannel customer service offers an opportunity to promote a brand by word-of-mouth. Word-of-mouth marketing occurs when customers talk about a brand’s service and products with their family, friends, acquaintances, and even their social media followers.
It’s one of the most powerful forms of marketing because 92% of customers trust their friends and family more than paid media. Customers with a higher net promoter score—the chance of them recommending a product—are advantageous to business growth.
Customer satisfaction stories spread like wildfire—and in today’s digital world, where more than 3.96 billion people use social media, that’s an invaluable chance to make an impact for a brand.
The following are a few key elements of how effective omnichannel support encourages word-of-mouth marketing.
Map Out the Customer Journey
The primary goal of omnichannel support should be to improve the customer experience. To offer a flawless experience, it’s important to know the customer journey.
Mapping helps monitor and determine the best-performing part of the omnichannel strategy throughout the ever-changing customer journey. By visualizing a customer’s path to purchase, BPOs like iQor can provide insights to improve the experience for existing customers and promote word-of-mouth marketing.
Focus on Existing Customer Relationships
As stated earlier, protecting and nurturing the existing customer base is effective and less costly than targeting new customers.
Successful omnichannel customer service supports human connections with current customers, even when utilizing artificial intelligence and digital tools. These connections create satisfied customers who recommend brand products and services to their peers.
Upload Content on Digital Platforms
Maintaining brand identity across digital platforms—especially on social media channels—creates a smoother customer journey. Content must include relevant, clear, and precise information that promotes the brand and improves the customer experience. Staying connected to customers and satisfying their needs encourages a positive brand image. And customers that share a positive experience with others can attract them to your brand.
Naturally, some new customers will come without even being specifically targeted by a brand. To this end, seamless omnichannel support can boost customer engagement and maximize results.
Streamlined Support Strengthens Relationships
In a nutshell, customers are most likely to be appreciative of efficient, reliable customer support. When that support encompasses a strategic omnichannel approach provided by a BPO like iQor, it will sustain, strengthen, and nurture customer relationships through exceptional experiences that build brand loyalty.
Experience the iQor Difference
iQor’s omnichannel support experience helps brands connect with customers on their terms. Our CX experts partner with brands to design intelligent channel optimization strategies to ensure they are perfectly aligned with customer needs. From AI-powered agents to in-app messaging, iQor’s experience makes us a trusted partner in CX.
iQor is ideally suited to help brands create amazing customer experiences. iQor provides a comprehensive suite of full-service and self-service scalable offerings that are purpose-built to deliver enterprise-quality CX.
Our award-winning CX services include:
- A global presence with 50 contact centers across 10 countries.
- A CX private cloud that maximizes performance and scales rapidly across multiple geographies on short notice.
- A partnership approach where we deploy agents and C-level executives to help maximize your ROI.
- The perfect blend of intelligent automation for scale and performance coupled with an irresistible culture comprised of people who love to delight your customers.
- Virtual and hybrid customer support options to connect with customers seamlessly, when and where they want.
- The ability to launch a customer support program quickly, even when you need thousands of agents ready to support your customers.
- A best-in-class workforce management team and supporting technology to create a centralized organization that can better serve your entire business.
iQor helps brands deliver the world’s most sought-after customer experiences. Interested in learning more about the iQor difference? If you’re ready to start a conversation with a customer experience expert, contact us to learn about how we can help you create more smiles.
Anupam Verma is director of digital solutions at iQor.