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Beyond Business Hours: 5 Best Practices for Shifting to 24/7 Service [Minus the Extra Cost]

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“Sorry, our agents are currently unavailable” is an all-too-familiar message that no customer wants to hear. Unfortunately it is one that customers often encounter when trying to connect with a business outside of ‘regular’ business hours, such as on weekends or holidays.

In today’s fast-paced world where customers demand round-the-clock service, this scenario lowers overall customer satisfaction.

Many businesses realize that limited availability negatively impacts the customer experience, often leading them to refrain from even offering 24/7 assistance. But, the reasoning behind this business decision is flawed; with the right customer engagement technology, business can easily offer 24/7 support with automation and self-service that doesn’t require a live agent available and skyrocket customer satisfaction and operational efficiency.

Read the latest trends surrounding 24/7 availability, discuss the primary benefits of 24/7 service and support to business growth and share the best practices for making a smooth transition to round-the-clock service with minimal effort.

The rising expectation for 24/7 customer service

In today’s hyper-connected world, customers expect businesses to be available at all times.

Research indicates that 90% of consumers expect immediate responses when contacting a business, and 95% of consumers rate 24/7 service as important.

It’s not just about resolving issues or answering queries. It’s about being there for the customer whenever they need you. Businesses that meet these expectations are likely to earn customer trust, loyalty and ultimately, increase their bottom line.

CommBox Self-service Chatbot solution

The benefits of 24/7 service and support

1. Improved customer satisfaction

Offering 24/7 support allows your customers to engage with your business on their terms. Whether they prefer to text, email or even call, round-the-clock services ensures they can choose the method and time that works best for them, leading to a more personalized and convenient customer experience.

2. Enhanced loyalty and retention

78% of customers have backed out of purchase due to a poor customer experience, and according to Forbes, 96% of customers would leave your business if you deliver a bad customer experience.

By meeting customer expectations for 24/7 availability and providing high-quality services, businesses can increase customer retention and earn twice – retained customers are more likely to become loyal customers who not only continue to buy from a business but also promote the brand.

3. Reduced costs

The idea of running a business 24/7 while minimizing costs might seem like a paradox. But in fact, it’s easily achievable. By improving satisfaction and loyalty, you save time and money on retention efforts. Additionally, deploying automation and AI technology can help meet customer expectations for 24/7 availability, while reducing about 30% of operational costs.

4. Increased sales and revenue

With 24/7 service and support, customers can engage with businesses whenever they desire, ask questions, get information and make purchases.

For instance, a customer interested in car insurance renewal can gather necessary information, receive a personalized offer, and proceed with the purchase seamlessly. Being available to assist during the buying process can effectively turn inquiries into successful sales

By enhancing the customer experience, retention and sales, you build a positive brand image and pave your way for business growth – even a slight 5% improvement in retention rates can lead to a remarkable 25% increase in revenue.

5. Stand out from the crowd

Working 9 to 5 might be a way to make a living, but the key to unlocking your revenue potential is truly being there for your customers 24/7. Round-the-clock service differentiates your business from businesses operating on a 9-5 schedule, provides you with a competitive edge and creates a lasting, positive impact on the customer experience.

Transitioning from call center dependency to 24/7 freedom: top 5 best practices

As call centers face staff shortages and burnout, it’s crucial for businesses to untangle from their heavy reliance on human labor. Innovative solutions are required to break this dependency.

1. Engage with customers on messaging

Messaging apps like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Instagram can help businesses provide 24/7 customer service at a lower cost. Businesses can respond in real-time or as soon as possible, ensuring seamless communications.

To efficiently engage with customers across channels, many businesses adopt an omnichannel platform that unifies all customer interactions into one agent workspace. Advanced omnichannel solutions like CommBox, also include AI chatbots, automation and unique features that enhance the agent productivity.

CommBox Unified Agent Workspace

2. Route calls from IVR to messaging

Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems can play a crucial role in achieving 24/7 customer service availability. By efficiently routing calls to messaging, your ensure that customer queries are directed to the right source, whether it’s human or chatbot, reducing wait times and improving customer satisfaction.

3. Deploy self-service chatbots to automate repetitive tasks 24/7

Chatbots allow customers to find solutions to their problems without having to wait for a customer service agent, enhancing service efficiency and customer satisfaction. Chatbots can be used to engage, qualify, support, and collect customer data.

By deploying self-service chatbots, you ensure 24/7 availability for endless use cases, whether you’re goal is to automate routine queries like FAQs and opening hours, or even more complex tasks like renewing policies or medical prescriptions, scheduling appointments or signing documents. The majority of tasks can be automated, freeing up your human resources for complex tasks only that require the human touch.

4. Harness Generative AI for customer support to improve agent efficiency and streamline operations

2023 is the year Generative AI took our lives by storm. From Open AI’s ChatGPT, to Google’s Bard to Microsoft’s Bing, Generative AI-based virtual assistants are everywhere.

Generative AI can be utilized to deeply streamline customer service and sales operations, from suggested responses to customer queries, to automatic conversation summaries, or even simply to allow customers to have a friendly chat with your brand.

Generative AI Conversations Summary CommBox

5. Choose a customer engagement platform that integrates with your CRM

Integrating your customer engagement platform with your CRM is a big efficiency catalyst. If you’re using leading CRMs like HubSpot, Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics, you need a solution that offers seamless integration to these CRMs. Integration guarantees that every customer interaction is logged and within reach, empowering personalized and efficient service consistently. You can synchronize customer data from your CRM for authentication, dispatch a technician to a customer’s listed address, or even automatically store conversation summaries within your CRM.

Success Story | HFD Logistics reduces 35% of operations costs with CommBox’s solutions for 24/7 service

HFD adopted CommBox’s omnichannel, AI-driven platform, as the primary communication platform – with over 30 agents using it daily to interact with all customers from different channels, through one unified inbox.

Adopting CommBox has enabled HFD to deploy an AI chatbot that handles most of the repetitive service requests 24/7 – including providing delivery status and package location, changing pick-up points, and transferring the conversation to a live agent when needed.

The results were remarkable!

  • 98% improvement in SLA
  • 85% of interactions automated
  • 66% reduction in service tickets to business customers.
  • 58% increase in satisfaction
  • 35% reduction in costs
  • 2X improvement in employee retention periods

Read HFD’s full success story here. 

Make the safe shift to 24/7 customer service with CommBox

Now that you understand how to make the shift to 24/7 effortless service, all you need is the technology partner to help you pave the way for success.

That’s where CommBox comes in.

CommBox’s autonomous communications platform provides enable businesses to drive efficiency and satisfaction 24/7, without relying on human staff.

CommBox provides an omnichannel platform to engage with customers across all digital channels, including a robust agent workspace for human support, self-service chatbots for 24/7 service as well as AI capabilities. Recently, CommBox integrated Generative AI into its platform, providing agents with suggested responses and automatic conversation summaries to drive higher efficiencies.

Now’s your opportunity become a 24/7 revenue generator.

Schedule a demo with a CommBox expert, and let us show you how.

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