The Now Consumer: Let Me Do it Myself

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The Now Consumer Series is centered around how contact centers have, and will continue to be responsible for providing customer service that exceeds consumer expectations. This much is not subject to change, even though the consumer expectations themselves are highly variable.

Because the nature of your customer relationships is so important to the success of your organization, and because a fundamental understanding of customer expectations drives those relationships, it is essential that you make it a priority to understand what your customers want and how to give it to them.

We’ve already discussed how the modern consumer wants contact centers to know them, utilize mobile and social experiences, and make interactions easy while saving them time. Now we’ll explore another unique characteristic of the modern consumer: autonomy.

Today’s consumers are empowered by self-service features that enable them to resolve basic customer service inquiries without having to speak with a contact center agent directly. According to the “2016 Aspect Consumer Experience Index Survey” 65 percent of survey respondents said they felt good about a company and themselves when they were able to answer a question or solve a problem related to that company without having to talk with a customer service agent.

This represents an 8 percent increase from the same point in 2015. Most significant, though, is the fact that the phenomenon is cross-generational. It isn’t simply Millennials with a DIY mentality—both Generation X and the Baby Boomer generation expressed greater interest in self-service features too.

Let’s give a real-life example of what this might look like. Most cars come equipped with a several hundred page car manual stored in the glove compartment or maybe it’s a digital manual on a CD that you can access via a computer. Not many of us are using CDs anymore and most of us don’t have the patience to flip through the manual to figure out how to adjust settings or troubleshoot an issue. Imagine if the car manual were a chatbot. All you’d have to do is use your smartphone to chat with a “digital employee” to get immediate answers.

Because of the increased self-reliance of modern consumers, contact centers must adapt accordingly. Fortunately, there are a wide variety of contact center solutions available today to expand self-service offerings within your organization. From chatbots to advanced IVR or ITR, learn about how advanced self-service contact center software can exceed the expectations of  your customers today.