Last week, we wrote about the need for software manufacturers and retailers to give paying customers practical information on their confirmation pages in order to reduce contact rates. However, no confirmation page can cover every possible question a customer might have about their purchase. There are just too many situations that cause customer confusion. These situations typically are inquiries about billing, delivery, installation or technical support. That is why it is crucial to have customer service representatives prepared to handle all types of questions that come in through all types of media, whether that means email, phone support, live chat, etc.
Now that many of our shopping and customer service experiences are moving online and becoming digitized you might think there is no longer a place for telephone based customer service. But we all know from personal experience that is not always the case.
Digital customer service experiences like email and live chat provide conveniences that phone support does not. With email, I do not have to wait on hold and then endure a phone call that prevents me from accomplishing anything else I might need to do. I can send the email, go about my business and when it is convenient for me I can read the response. But with email, I might not get immediate resolution to my inquiry. The trade-off is obvious, but people’s preferences change hourly depending on context. In short, you need both email support and phone support.
This infographic from Zendesk puts the why and how of phone support in perspective. It says that the vast majority of customers prefer an option for phone support, and will continue to do so in the future when online phone calls will become prevalent. It also contains demographic data of call centers along with cost information.
Image originally posted on Zengage, The Zendesk Blog