While stores and online sites are lit up with the hustle and bustle of consumers during the holiday season, contact centers try their best to keep afloat amidst the chaos. Since the most awaited sales of the year, Black Friday and Cyber Monday fall around this period, customers are anxiously waiting the entire year.
It is during this last quarter, that sales tend to elevate and the need to provide top-notch customer service becomes paramount. The peak traffic can be extremely overwhelming for your contact center team, though. Hence, it is essential that they stay ahead of the game by being prepared beforehand.
The Value of Excellent Customer Service During the Holiday Season
A vast majority of individuals consider customer service to be the most crucial building block for brand loyalty. Ensuring an impeccable consumer experience is prime when it comes to the overall success of your call center and customer retention. This becomes even more vital during the holiday season. Your call center agents are the unsung heroes working effortlessly on the front lines, committed to providing customers with a quick fix. You must be completely prepared to handle the entire support demand and provide an amazing CX throughout the upcoming holidays if you want to ensure the seamless operations of your call center.
Preparing Your Contact Center for Black Friday and Cyber Monday
Black Friday and Cyber Monday are usually very hectic for everyone. The employees and employers of an organization, both have their plates full of preparing orders and making sales. On the other hand, consumers are on the run for crossing things off their holiday wish list and hunting down the best discounts. A large-scale shopping event like this would undoubtedly have some snags and hiccups, unfortunately. To cater to these concerns in advance, create a customer service strategy before Black Friday and Cyber Monday arrive.
Here are some pointers for accomplishing that:
Increase Your Headcount
One of the busiest selling periods for businesses worldwide is Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Businesses make hundreds of billions of dollars in a single weekend. More capital often translates into more clients, which results in additional customer inquiries and issues that need to be resolved through good service.
You can temporarily expand the number of team members on your customer care team to better serve your consumers. You can choose between asking a couple of your current team members to assist, or hiring and training a seasonal employee. Therefore, it makes perfect sense to expand your contact center staff because the number of calls and chat requests will rise.
Update Self-Service Channels
Tech-savvy customers prefer using self-service, when possible, rather than wasting time and resources, calling agents, or waiting for email support. By utilizing self-service alternatives for common customer interactions such as tracking status and order updates, agents will not have to work as hard and consumers will remain satisfied.
Provide Support Through Multiple Channels
Beyond the phone, the technology used for communication has undoubtedly advanced fairly. Customers have a wide range of alternatives available to them in this day and age, literally at their fingertips, whether it be a chatbot, SMS, FaceTime, Skype, or another form of communication. Therefore, contact centers must acknowledge that customers expect and want options when contacting brands for assistance.
Every customer has a distinct preference but they all expect their issue to be resolved quickly and effectively in the end. Some customers prefer self-service or a helpful FAQ website, while others prefer voice support. Hiring self-service solutions for customer interactions may help keep both the agents and customers energized, especially during occupied seasons, keeping in mind this diversity of consumers.
Prepare Responses for Common Questions Asked on Black Friday & Other Sales
You’re probably going to notice that your staff keeps getting asked the same questions every Black Friday. By including answers to frequently asked questions in your customer service plan, you may ease their workload and speed up responses. Questions regarding your return policy, cost of shipping, duration of shipping, and more are common concerns among consumers. To make it easier for customers to access the answers, these responses can also be posted on an FAQ page.
Increase Service Hours For Cyber Monday and the Holiday Season in General
You must increase service hours unless your call center already provided 24/7 customer support. This means that during sales like Black Friday, if your helpline numbers are typically open from 9 am to 6 pm, you can extend them to 8 pm or 9 pm. The additional staff personnel can simplify this process. Similarly to this, for clients who require assistance on the weekends, you can extend the number of service days by having a team operate on weekends.
Obtain Another Helpline Number
You can create a separate helpline number to handle the increased calls that come from consumers who are specifically shopping on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. In this manner, calls from your regular customers won’t be confused with those from the Black Friday sales. Moreover, teams may be appropriately allocated and call routing becomes simple to accommodate the fluctuating call volume flow.
Instead of the holiday season resulting in havoc for your contact center team, try incorporating strategies that may streamline their processes and keep your customers satisfied. Sales like Black Friday and Cyber Monday usually prove to be a testing time for customer support agents. Irrespective of whether your team communicates through voice or chat support, their knowledge level, and composure will make or break the consumer experience and net promoter scores.