E-commerce has been through enormous growth thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. There has been a huge shift from offline - to online purchases and this has brought many e-commerce organizations new opportunities and challenges. Online consumers are becoming more demanding every day. If they have a less good experience with your webshop, then you will most likely not see them again.
How do you deal with the increasing volume of customer contacts from very demanding customers? Are you expanding your inhouse customer service team with new well-trained, compassionate agents? And what about (seasonal) peak moments, customer service outside office hours, and with questions from customers from abroad?
Outsourcing (part of) your customer service is the answer, especially in these 3 situations:
1 Handling peak moments
Every organization has to deal with peak moments, depending on the product or the industry. This could be in the summer when people massively go to theme parks or during shopping days such as Black Friday and the Christmas holidays.
During these peak moments, customers expect the same service as any other day. Quite an operational challenge, because where do you get those extra, well-trained resources? External service providers are known for their scalability and can easily respond to these peak moments with extra well-trained agents. Your customers will not notice the difference.
2 Availability in the evening and weekend hours
E-commerce is particularly popular because it’s also possible to shop outside regular shopping hours. This also creates expectations regarding the availability of customer service. If your organization is only available during office hours, customers cannot contact you directly with their questions. Most customers hang up after just under two minutes of wait time, and 34% of those will not call back.
Now we understand that operationally it’s not easy to scale up your organization to also be available during evening and weekend hours. The solution? An external customer service provider ensures that you are also available in the evenings and weekend hours without having to hire and train additional employees. Sounds like a win-win situation!
3 Growing internationally
It is getting more and more common to buy products abroad. Compared to the previous year, cross-border e-commerce has increased by 21% (!) worldwide in the first half of 2020. This growth makes it attractive for many organizations to expand internationally.
There is a lot to consider when expanding abroad. For example, customers want to be addressed in their own language, they want to be helped by an employee who really understands them. We know it’s not easy to (directly) set up a customer service team for every market. By outsourcing your international customer service to a service provider that offers multiple languages, you can continue to expand country after country without having to worry about customer service.
What are the benefits of fully outsourcing your customer service?
We have outlined three separate situations in which you only outsource a part of the customer service. But it is of course much more effective to outsource your entire customer service. Why?
Time and cost-saving
Setting up and executing customer service yourself is not something you "just" do. By outsourcing customer service to a professional customer service provider, you save time for your core business and you will save budget as well. You do not have to invest in staffing (including peak moments, weekends, and evenings) the education and training of agents nor in hardware or software.
Experienced, trained agents for the optimal customer experience
Customer service is a trade of its own, not something you do on the side.For external customer service providers it is their bread and butter. The agents are well trained and experienced in handling customer questions professionally in the tone and style of your company. In this way, they continuously contribute to strengthening your customers' experience.
Always available through all customer contact channels
A customer service provider ensures that your organization is available at all times when your customer needs you, via the channels they prefer to use, even in the evening and weekend hours. The agents have all the knowledge and capacity to give your customers the optimal customer experience through the various channels.
Never worry about staffing ever again
A customer service provider is not only flexible but also handles peak and off-peak moments simply and effectively. They easily scale up at peak moments, but can also easily scale back when it’s calmer again. In this way, customer service providers ensure that customers do not get irritated and leave due to long waiting times. Also, you don’t have to hire expensive extra staff during (unexpected) peak moments.
International growth opportunities through multilingual customer service
Outsourcing your customer service to a provider that offers multilingual service, makes expansion abroad a lot easier. The agents are trained in multilingual communication and can easily respond to the different approaches per country. This way you don't have to prepare an entire team per country immediately. Expanding internationally has never been this easy!
So, do not wait any longer and outsource your customer service to a partner specialized in customer care. This way you have the benefits, but not the burdens of professional customer service!