Pioneers of American retail, including Marshall Field, Richard Warren Sears, and R.H. Macy, understood the value of sourcing in-demand products and making them available to their customers in a central location. This strategy led to many decades of retailers being primarily product-focused.
How times have changed. In this digital era, consumers have unlimited options when it comes to finding products. The result has been a profound paradigm shift. While product remains important, customer engagement is now the primary driver of success, creating both challenges and opportunities for businesses across every industry.
The Power of Greater Insights
Today’s retail visionaries understand that serving the needs of people, rather than just selling products, is the key to gaining a competitive edge. This requires investing more time and effort into the customer experience. Insights are the essential component for making the necessary operational improvements to ensure every interaction is positive.
Where to Begin?
Perhaps, motivational speaker Zig Ziglar said it best. “You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.” Moving from a product-centric to a customer-centric foundation begins with leveraging fundamental insights.
- Customer Insights – Businesses need to understand the reasons why customers are contacting them. Only with this information, can they best staff and train agents. While customer feedback on products and services remains important, it’s also essential to understand the various levels of effort required at every stage of the customer journey.
- Issue Resolution – There is a direct link between increased issue resolution (IR) and higher rates of customer satisfaction. Uncovering the causes of low IR starts with identifying non-optimized business processes and systems. By fixing issues, there are other benefits, including fewer calls, reduced costs and ultimately improved revenue.
- Average Handle Time – Like with issue resolution, it’s also important to determine the root causes of high average handle time (AHT). This can be corrected by improving routing and shoring up gaps in agent knowledge which are among the most common sources of delays.
Whether using a self-service or an assisted-service channel, customers want a seamless, personalized experience, and they are increasingly comfortable with sharing their data to obtain it. By using insights, such as context from shared data, previous interactions, and personas, based on demographics or customer preference, interactions can be highly personalized.
As the leading postal operator in Belgium, Belgian Post Group (Bpost) sought an intelligent, personalized call routing and self-service solution to provide a better customer experience. This led to the deployment of a personalized, dynamic IVR that uses real-time data to route customers to best suit their specific needs. The result is an individually-tailored experience that has improved customer interactions while also reducing operational costs. Read the Bpost success story.
More than ever, insights are at the heart of improving the customer experience. With the ongoing shift towards the customer experience as the primary brand differentiator, savvy businesses will harness insights to improve interactions and strengthen their position.
Learn more about how personalization can make a great experience for your customers in our executive brief Seven Steps to Omnichannel Self-Service. Join us at the Genesys user conference CX18 to get a real-time look at omnichannel self-service and how you can leverage it for your company.