Pain points are the source of bad customer experiences. They are moments during the customer service journey that cause frustration and reflect poorly on your organization. The good news is that you can strategically target these areas to reduce frustration and improve the quality of service you deliver while saving time, money, and agent heartache.
Making sure your customer’s service journey is as smooth and painless as possible is a top priority. 1 in 3 customers will walk away after just one bad experience.
Below we explore 2021’s biggest customer service pain points and what you can do to ease, if not eliminate them.
Identify your pain points
First, good analytics tools that measure customer experience and satisfaction helps you identify pain points. Two primary resources of this data are your customers themselves and your support team.
Customer feedback from surveys and call recordings help you see the service journey the way your customers experience it. Remember that customer surveys aren’t limited to post-call wrap ups. You can use email, webchat, or even SMS to find out what your customers think.
Second, feedback and key performance indicators (KPIs) from your support team can help you identify pain points within your processes. Average handle time and first call resolution rates are good indicators of customer satisfaction and therefore, less frustration. But that only scratches the surface. You can dig deeper into things like ticket duration and caller sentiment for a real panoramic view.
You can also identify pain points by identifying call drivers. Zeroing in on drivers that come up more often might help you prevent a pain point before it becomes widespread.
Pain points can be broken into three categories:
Next, define your process improvements
Your customer service processes should be as streamlined as possible. Pain points arise when your process is clunky and hard to work with. Here are the top five accompanied by solutions.
Pain #1: Inaccurate routing
One process in the CX journey that is a big source of customer frustration is inaccurate routing. It causes your customers to be passed from agent to agent until someone can answer their question or solve their problem.
This pain point:
- Costs your customers time
- Does not demonstrate their value
- Makes you look like you don’t know what you’re doing
The solution: Intelligent routing
Advances in artificial intelligence (AI) like machine learning and natural language processing have greatly improved the way IVR can route your customers’ calls. Accurately route your customers using AI-enabled IVR systems.
These systems take into account both agents’ skill sets and customers’ needs when routing calls. They can clearly understand what your customer needs and make sure they are connected with the agent that can best serve them.
Pain #2: Overly complicated service solutions
We’ve all sat through endless menu options only to be baffled as to which option to choose. This is a real pain point for your customers.
Customers prefer personalization and ease of use. Having a complicated interface is neither of these.
The solution: AI-enabled IVR with virtual agents for self-service
This solution lets you provide free-form menu scripts that evolve to better suit your customer’s needs. Leveraging AI helps you to better understand customer intent and interact in a way that is streamlined and intuitive.
Pain #3: Ill-equipped agents
As the frontline of your business, your agents are meant to be the experts on the products or services you offer and as such your customers expect them to know the necessary steps and information required for resolving any and all inquiries. When your agents can’t help your customers because they lack the knowledge, customers will lose respect for your organization and hang up frustrated.
The solution: Knowledge bases, speech analytics, and agent scripts
Speech analytics provides a window into conversations your agents have with your customers. You can identify the specific knowledge they lack and create targeted training sessions.
AI-enabled speech analytics can even provide real-time suggestions for agents when they are discussing something technical or overly complicated. Knowledge gaps are effectively eliminated.
Pain #4: No channels of choice
There are more channels you can use to communicate with your customers than ever before.
Utilizing as many as possible will expand your customer base and make it more likely that you’re satisfying the diverse array of channel preference that’s out there.
Because there’s such a proliferation of preference, sometimes this leads to the need to use multiple channels for a single conversation. When conversation history isn’t transferred between channels, customers end up repeating themselves, the customer service process is prolonged, and you wind up with a major pain point.
The solution: Blended omnichannel with pre-built CRM automation
CRM automation makes sure customer profiles are updated and customers are contacted according to relevant, pre-determined workflows so the conversation can continue across channels even without agent intervention.
Pain #5: Long hold times
When customers have to spend more time on a task than they feel is necessary, they’ll abandon it altogether. This translates to late payments, delinquent accounts, or worse the end of your business relationship. You can show your customers you value their time by improving how long they spend interacting with your support systems.
Long queue times are a pain point that has plagued contact centers for just about as long as they have been around. Most of the time they arise out of high inbound volume coupled with a less-than-optimal number of agents available to handle it.
The solution: Improve self-service options with AI and virtual agents.
Self-service options work best for routine tasks like updating account information or making a payment. But the improvement of natural language processing paired with machine learning has expanded the number of tasks self-service functions like virtual agents and conversational IVRs can execute.
Better self-service options reduce queue time by increasing the number of agents available to handle more complex calls. Customers spend less time on hold and more time getting it done.
Remember: No pain, no gain
The better you can remedy the biggest pain points of the cx journey the more satisfied your customers will be. Take time to identify what frustrates your customers and the gain in numbers of positive customer experiences will be worth the work.