Although retailers are quick to emphasize technology’s importance in augmenting today’s customer experience, many brands are still having a tough time answering the call to deliver on those experiences. Nearly half (47%) of customer service managers rate outdated technology within their retail ecosystem as their toughest challenge in delivering great service, according to a survey from Ovum and BoldChat by LogMeIn.
These customer service managers face additional major challenges, including:
Limited budgets to invest in technology (43%);
Lengthy internal processes (42%);
Complex agent desktop tools (41%);
Lack of multichannel options (40%); and
Lack of understanding about customer behavior (40%).
While many retail managers understand the problems these issues present, consumers aren’t exactly enthralled with the customer service experiences call centers provide. Half of customers are frustrated with automated response systems, 43% find it difficult to reach a representative and 33% are dissatisfied with the amount of time it takes to reach a representative.
The dangerous part of this frustration is that consumers simply don’t have the patience to deal with a customer experience that doesn’t fit their needs. As many as 82% of shoppers say they would stop doing business with a brand following a bad experience.
Call Centers Must Integrate Advanced Tech To Meet Shopper Needs
Retailers must understand that the Internet plays a greater role in bridging potential gaps between their customer service managers and consumers. In 2016, a higher percentage of consumers (72%) used the web or a mobile app to find a resolution to their customer experience problem than did so in 2014 (61%). And this online activity continues into the actual conversation with a call center representative; 69% of customers use a company web site or mobile application while speaking with an agent.
The report suggests retailers implement advanced technologies such as co-browsing, MMS messaging and visual interaction voice response platforms, to enable agents to be better prepared to meet the advanced requirements of higher customer expectations.
Ovum surveyed 300 contact center managers and 400 customers across North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand. Ovum gathered responses through a web- and telephone-based survey program in April and May 2016.