Businesses with on-demand apps have disrupted their respective industries while providing consumers with a fresh new way to buy, sell, travel and everything in between. If you’ve ever booked a ride, ordered a meal, purchased tickets or reserved a table you’re well aware of the convenience that on-demand apps provide by helping us accomplish anything, on our terms within a few clicks and swipes.
The on-demand industry has changed the way we interact with businesses because it gives us a low-touch frictionless way to purchase goods and services no matter where we are. The problem is on-demand services fall short when it comes to customer service.
On-demand services offer a limited number of support channels to their customers, and many of them don’t list a phone number or offer support through chat, Messenger and SMS. This means customers have to resort to email which negates real-time support and guarantees a delayed response to their inquiry. What’s more, when businesses do have a support line customers can expect to be on hold for extended periods of time or routed to the wrong department.
Help Customers Help Themselves
The days are long gone when it was appropriate to answer an e-mail within 24 hours or keep someone on hold with no hope in sight. Self-service is the fastest most economical way for businesses to provide support. Using self-service, customers can access information and perform simple tasks such as password reminders, payment updates, account changes and check order status at their convenience. This reduces inbound traffic coming in through voice and email, and frees agents up to provide personalized help for urgent and serious inquires such as unauthorized charges or product/service issues.
Sophisticated self-service tools such as chatbots and virtual assistants engage in a two-way dialog to understand the intent and context of customer questions–ensuring customers are given accurate and personalized responses. This technology uses natural language understanding to recognize the nuances of a customer’s question and adds a layer of personalization by incorporating data from other systems (e.g., account information, location, or order history).
Provide Consistent Service Across Channels
On-demand services only engage with customers through their mobile devices, so the distinction between communication channels is blurred. This means that customers don’t want to be tied down to one channel. Omni-channel solutions enable businesses to offer support through voice, chat, SMS, web and Messenger – putting the customer in the driver seat.
However, a true omni-channel approach is not just opening up new channels to customers. Businesses need to provide consistent experiences and service levels through combinations of channels used in the customer journey. Context continuity enables customers to move from self-service to live assistance by preserving session state, so they don’t need to repeat themselves to a live agent or start over when they are in the middle of a task.
If on-demand businesses implement self-service and omni-channel solutions into their support strategy they will expedite response time, help customers help themselves, lower costs and reduce the strain on live agents.