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What is “Customer Experience” and why does it matter to your business?

- October 19, 2017 10:12 am

I was at an event recently where one of the presenters shared his disappointing experience with a major Canadian retailer. He was the “Secret Santa” for his new daughter-in-law and wanted to get the perfect present, which he found at this retailer. To save time, and stress – no one wants to go to the mall just before Christmas – he ordered it online with a delivery date of December 17.

Time passes.

The delivery date passes.

No package.

The presenter waited one more day before calling customer service, pressed all the right keys and eventually spoke to a live agent who assured him the order would arrive soon. A weight lifted off his shoulders.

The next day he received an email that the item is out of stock. Frustrated, he orders the same item from a major online retailer. It is delivered the next day, and he is now one of the 68% of Canadians  who won’t return to a provider once they have left because of a poor experience (according to a recent Accenture study).

What did I learn from this? “Customer Experience” encompasses every interaction someone has with your company, in person, over the phone, or online. And a good or bad experience doesn’t just stay with the customer – they will share it over social media, in reviews, or even as an illustrative anecdote when presenting to industry insiders.

What does this mean for you, a business? Simplifying the service process and providing accurate, up-to-date information are key to a good customer experience and customer retention.

And what does this all actually mean in practice? The Connected Digital Experience

The Connected Digital Experience

With all the digital technologies at our fingertips, every business should know who is calling, their previous interactions, and why they are calling at this precise moment in time. Think of it from the customer’s perspective. To them, this is all one continuous experience with a company, from looking at a website to chatting with a bot on the site to sending an email to connecting with a live agent. This makes it doubly frustrating when a customer has to verify who they are and what they need help with at every stage, even if each interaction takes place at a different time.

Cisco’s Contact Center solutions include “Context Service”, which drops breadcrumbs from customer interactions within all of your channels (web, email, chat, phone, etc.) into the cloud. With Context Service, these breadcrumbs can be served up to the agent interacting with a customer, allowing them to provide better service in less time.

One Size Doesn’t Fit All

Every business, no matter what its size, has customers.. And providing these customers with a good experience is key to the ongoing success of your business.  Without customers, there will be no profits, no growth. According to that Accenture survey, 80% of customers who switched providers could have been retained, with customer service cited as the top method of doing so. 49% switched simply due to poor customer service.

Just like your customers have different needs, so to does your business – there isn’t a “one-size fits all” contact center solution. With Cisco, you can choose from a cloud, on premises, or hybrid solution that fits your needs. From Cisco Spark Care, a cloud-based service which allows up to 20 agents to interact with customers through webchat and call back services, to Cisco Hosted Collaboration Services for Contact Center, a full, cloud-based contact centre, to the on-premises Cisco Unified Contact Center Express and Enterprise – Cisco has the right solution for your business.

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