Upcoming 2017 Trends in Customer Service and Experience

A truly successful business involves more than just a great product or service. In fact, exceptional customer service ensures that your business leaves a lasting impression on customers’ minds. Outstanding customer experience is when your brand is successful in triggering positive feelings from a customer just by the mention of its name. This leads to the brand enjoying customer loyalty, word of mouth, and definitely, revenue growth.
Here, we cover trends in customer service and experience that are anticipated in 2017.
1. Chatbots
Nowadays, Chatbots are employed on company websites to deliver a more efficient customer experience. They provide a direct channel of automated product enquiry by making logical guesses and answers to enquiries. For example, American Express has a Facebook Messenger Chatbot that lets customers request receipts, track charges and redeem reward points. With such automated customer support, costs at the business end are reduced as companies no longer need to hire a customer service officer.
2. Virtual Reality and Holograms
Retailers are slowly beginning to personalise and enhance customer experience with holograms and virtual reality displays. ASOS, an online clothing, allows users to upload their photos onto the website and “try on” an outfit before purchasing. This allows customers to decide if an outfit would look good on them, reducing the risk of making bad purchases. Retailers are attracted to such technology as little physical space is needed while creating dynamic 3D experiences for customers.
3. Embracing 5 senses
Retailers these days no longer rely so much on the products and services they are selling to make an impression on customers. Rather, they utilise our 5 senses to create a lasting impact on our minds. A brand’s look, feel, and its aroma, are all key brand features that help differentiate the brand from competitors. Famous Amos and LUSH are two brands that take great advantage of our sense of smell to market their products.
4. Fast and responsive customer service
In the past, response time to customer enquiries averaged more than 7 hours. However, with automated SMS customer support, response times have improved drastically, and it is a guarantee that they will be even more efficient this year. With automated scheduling systems in place, consumers can easily book appointments via SMS instead of calling. This makes the customer experience pleasant as waiting times are decreased. Companies that respond fast to customer feedback are bound to be at a competitive edge.
5. Real time tracking
With companies like Uber providing real time vehicle tracking, there is a new benchmark for companies to follow suit. Nowadays, customers prefer realistic delivery times to ambiguous ones. This automated scheduling feature also portrays confidence. Confidence that your car is going to show up, or your package is sure to arrive. A vague confirmation saying, “Your package is out for delivery” is no longer effective in reassuring consumers this year.
In a much more automated world, new technological features alter how consumers make a purchase. This causes customer expectations to change overtime and brands need to keep up to manage these evolving expectations. Constantly staying in tune with customers’ needs and wants through traditional market research will ensure you are updated about trends in customer service. This in turn helps your business maintain profitability.

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