How Mobile Phones are Redefining Customer Support
Customer support has become excessively mobile dependant in present times. Contrary to the current situation the picture was vastly different even half a decade ago. Things have changed a lot, in a steady yet significant pace, over the past few years. So, let us a take a journey today through the revolutionary milestones of this ever blooming industry.
How Customer Support Changed Over Time
There was once a time when you had to visit a store, to get a product fixed. With an imminent increase in the popularity of telephones and invention of switches, customer care became telephonic. Then came the era of toll free numbers followed by the arrival of dot com, which led to the birth of email and chat support. Customer service was reaching the peak of its evolution.
Post 2010 was the dawn of the social media and smartphone age. PC usage dropped significantly and people started accessing social media websites from their mobile phones and tablets. With an abundance of mobile apps and the convenience it brought, people kept switching to smart apps in large volumes, to quench their constant thirst of accessing social mediums. One exceptional mobile messaging app deserves a special mention here (Can you take a guess?). Yes its none other than WhatsApp! This app recorded an exponential growth, over a small period of time, and became the most globally popular messaging app by reaching 800 million plus active users in April, 2015.
The above graph shows the growth in the WhatsApp user base, since 2013 (Source – Statista)
This proves 2 things:
- Over 800 million people are using a certain mobile messaging app. Considering the said fact, there is a high probability that your customers are using it too.
- These apps are highly addictive and bring a significant change in a person’s behavior. People are always hooked on to their screens and spend hours interacting with other, by sending/ receiving messages in real time.
The formula to building a successful rapport with your customer
Now back to year 2015. Here is an important question to all entrepreneurs and businessmen, “How do you tailor your customer support process to accommodate this behavioral change?” Allowing consumers to get in touch with you through Facebook and Twitter is a great solution, since these social networks have their own apps. To top it off, you can launch your own smartphone app to elevate it even higher.
So what are your options?
- Buy a ready-made software. Most of the big help desk companies have already introduced in-app customer service technology – you can do your own research and decide.
- Create a customized and cross-platform mobile app for your customers.
Before you start, you need to understand the nature of work your support team does. Customer support is not only about responding to various questions. Depending on your business, there can be lots of areas to cover such as:
- Grievance handling
- Service or product support
- Payment assistance
- Coordination among multiple parties
- Vendor management
- Order taking and cancellation
- Order tracking
- Legal stuff
Readymade apps can help you get started quickly. The downside being the fact that they might not have all the features you require.
On the other side, it takes time and effort to develop your own app, but you can have all the features and functionalities that you need. This app is your property; you can modify it accordingly in the future, catering perfectly to the needs of your clients.
The choice between these two is one which you need to base with the needs and requirements, of your business.
So, know your customers, offer them what they rightfully deserve and they will stay with you forever!