Why online customer service is better with voice

Why online customer service is better with voice

You’ve probably had to deal with customer service at some point in your life. It may have been for a personal purchase, a gift that didn’t turn out quite right, or a business service. According to a recent survey, about 88 percent of people deal with customer service in one way or another over the course of a year. There have been a lot of innovations in the field over time, and it may seem that customer service is progressing and in fact, evolving. Years ago, customer service was entirely limited to actual phone conversations, today you can resolve issues through messaging services and apps across a range of devices. New technologies like AR and VR open up even more possibilities for customer service.

Isolated portrait of a beautiful helpdesk or support line operator answering a call.

Isolated portrait of a beautiful helpdesk or support line operator answering a call.

Source: http://hubpages.com/business/6-Ways-to-Improve-Customer-Satisfaction

Customer service is as bad as ever

Given how much technology has moved forward in the last few decades, you might expect to see a similar leap in terms of consumers’ satisfaction with customer service experiences. Yet this doesn’t seem to be the case. It turns out that today’s consumers are exactly as unsatisfied with customer service as they were back in the 70s. All the amazing new apps, cool platforms and new hardware devices have done nothing to change the statistics in the past few decades. Today, 56% of customers are walking away from customer service without having their complaint fully resolved. This is an enormous number, and if we look at the other 54%, not all of them are fully satisfied either. Only about 22% of customers finish a customer service interaction feeling fully satisfied. This is a small fraction of the total number of consumers using customer services at any time.

Looking for a personal connection

People often ask whether humanity has evolved over the ages. If we look back to the 19th, 18th, 17th centuries or even further than that we see a lot fewer technologies but we are unable to answer the question of whether humanity as a species has changed its nature beyond superficial technological advances. In many ways when we read texts from older time periods, humanity, or at least human nature, looks almost identical. This is relevant to customer service. While the technologies have changed, the actual need of the consumer has not. Customers want a personal connection, even with just one individual. They want to be listened to and they want some kind of solution. Whether you are using advanced VR imaging techniques or a humble phone call, customers are basically all looking for the same thing: a personal connection.

Automation eliminates empathy

One of the innovations within the customer service sphere has been automation. This is great for time and cost saving reasons; it’s so much faster and efficient than any human. However, technology often removes the main thing customers are looking for: empathy. Too much automation can lead to feelings of frustration because ultimately there is no one at the other end who really understands your problem, there is a just a bot with a limited number of possible responses.

Bringing back voice

However great and easy to use new modes of technology are, it turns out nothing beats voice when it comes to customer service. Of course, satisfaction rates aren’t 100% when talking to another person about your problem but they are much higher than when using other technologies, and especially compared to automated services. More than anything else, voice allows customers to connect with another person and to feel that someone understands and empathizes with them. While there are great technologies out there, it looks like the ones without a voice will always be missing a key component of customer service.

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