Providing excellent customer service is essential for driving customer retention, loyalty and advocacy.
According to Shep Hyken’s 2023 ACA Study on customer experience, 76 percent of customers would go out of their way to do business with a company that has better customer service, and 86 percent of customers would switch to a competing brand if they provided a better customer experience.
A CDP can connect your organization’s data silos and provide a single view of the customer for customer service teams, sales associates and other groups. This way, support agents and in-store associates can have a complete understanding of customers’ interactions with your brand, and can use that information to tailor support and sales efforts.
“Many brands are still transitioning between their digital and physical business units, treating each other as competitors rather than holistic elements of the same business that are there to support each other and ultimately deliver an aligned and consistent experience to their customers,” Rob Manley, technical director, Flourish, said. “The brands that have embraced this best are those who understand their customers the most, with their understanding underpinned by a strong single customer view.”
Here are seven ways to use a customer data platform to connect physical and digital customer service experiences:
1. Arm Contact Center Agents with Actionable Customer Data
Gathering and sharing behavioral data can help contact center agents understand the entire customer experience. Data that’s assembled across apps, websites, and social media show agents how customers interact with your brand.
This data can help agents identify areas of friction and take steps to reduce it. Agents can personalize their approach and provide tailored recommendations that are more likely to result in positive actions from the customer. In addition, this data can help agents anticipate customer needs and preferences, leading to more efficient and effective service.
2. Generate Customer Lead Scores to Help Prioritize Inbound Calls
A customer lead score is an internal-facing value that contact agents can reference. The formula for generating the score can be based on customer activities, their level of engagement with your brand, or their likelihood to churn. The scores can help you prioritize incoming calls and route callers to the right agent.
Agents can quickly identify high-value or at-risk customers and provide them with a more personalized experience. This can lead to a more positive customer experience, as agents are able to provide relevant information and decrease resolution time.
Customer lead scores should be dynamic, rather than static. By analyzing customer data and identifying patterns, you can continuously improve your lead scoring system to provide even more personalized and effective customer service.
3. Proactively Send Status Emails to Customers With Active Support Cases
Customers with an active service or support case can be sent proactive emails detailing the status of their case. By leveraging data to keep customers informed, you provide high-quality service and demonstrate that you value the relationship with them.
These emails can reduce customer anxiety and uncertainty, which can increase customer satisfaction and retention. You can also leverage status emails as an opportunity to provide additional information or recommendations related to customers’ cases.
Additionally, sending email reminders for upcoming appointments can enhance the customer experience by ensuring that customers are well-prepared and informed. This can help reduce no-shows or late arrivals. By proactively communicating with customers through status emails and appointment reminders, companies can build stronger relationships with their customers and establish themselves as trusted partners.
4. Use a Single Customer View to Drive Next-Best Actions
A unified customer profile, also known as a single customer view, can provide contact center agents with a comprehensive view of customers’ engagement history, shopping behavior, and purchase history. Agents can gain a better understanding of customers’ needs and preferences, allowing them to provide more personalized and effective customer service.
In addition, a unified customer profile can help agents make next-best product recommendations, which can significantly increase cross-sell and upsell opportunities. By suggesting additional products or services that are tailored to customers’ preferences and needs, agents can provide more value to the customer while increasing the company’s revenue.
Next-best action requires a real-time feedback loop that continually ingests new customer interactions, and adjusts insights based on those changes. The interactions are timestamped to understand the customers’ engagement across channels and the sequence in which they occurred. Next-best action is based on customers’ specific interactions with your company and continually adapts and improves over time.
5. Empower In-Store Associates to Better Serve Customers
For retail businesses with physical stores, in-store associates play a key role in customer service excellence. In-store associates can offer one-to-one, personalized assistance and create a positive shopping experience. Associates who provide excellent customer service can help increase sales and improve customer satisfaction.
A CDP can be integrated with clienteling apps to streamline the selling process for in-store associates and provide a seamless shopping experience for customers. By centralizing customer data, in-store associates can quickly search for customers, view their purchase history and provide personalized recommendations. This can reduce customer wait times and increase customer satisfaction. Additionally, with a 360-view dashboard, in-store associates can access inventory information, review and confirm orders, and complete the checkout or returns process.
This not only enhances the customer experience but also improves operational efficiency and reduces the likelihood of errors or miscommunication. Integrating a CDP with clienteling apps can enhance the in-store shopping experience, improve operational efficiency and increase customer satisfaction and retention.
6. Ensure Service Teams Have the Right Data Privacy Protocols In Place
Customers are taking a critical look at the brands they interact with. They no longer know whom to trust, which creates a sense of skepticism that affects businesses across all industries.
“Data analytics and technological developments have given businesses greater resources for providing excellent customer service,” Vladimir Fomenko, founder and director, Infatica, said. “However, when accumulating and analyzing consumer data, businesses must also be mindful of customer privacy and data security. Implementing strict data governance and compliance procedures safeguards the business and its clients.”
Organizations need to ensure that their service teams have the right data privacy protocols in place. With proper privacy protocols, organizations can secure customer data by enforcing control over access, safeguard datasets and fulfill data subject requests. Granular access controls help maintain access policies that only allow individual teams or employees access to data.
In addition, policy-based permissions enable organizations to create permissions using pre-built policies to ensure consistent regulation at scale. Advanced authentication features can also be leveraged. This secures access to systems with a single sign-on interface. By empowering only authenticated users to access data, customers will feel safer in every interaction.
7. Engage In-Store Shoppers with Interactive Point of Sale Experiences
Using tablets, digital browsers and interactive point of sale (POS) systems to engage customers and enhance the in-store shopping experience improves the customer experience, and provides valuable insights that companies can use to improve their products and services.
These technologies can also improve operational efficiency by reducing wait times, streamlining the checkout process, and providing real-time inventory information. By offering these tools and experiences, customers can easily search for products, place orders in-store, and interact with personalized content and advertisements.
“The opportunity for brands here is to capture those interactions and turn them into actionable pieces of information that can be used to enhance a customer’s onward journey with the brand,” Manley said.
Improving Customer Service with Customer Data
Providing excellent customer service is more important than ever. Customers have come to expect it and will quickly find alternatives if your brand doesn’t provide it. Organizations that prioritize customer service will see increased sales and retention, positive customer reviews and word-of-mouth recommendations to other prospective customers.
A CDP can help serve as the technological foundation of customer service excellence. It provides a single view of the customer to support sales, customer service and in-store associates. A CDP gives the entire organization a complete understanding of customers’ interactions with your brand – you can use that information to tailor support and sales efforts.
In this post, we detailed seven examples of using customer data to deliver outstanding customer service. That customer data is collected and made available by numerous technology systems, including CDPs, clienteling apps, digital browsers and POS systems.