March 15th, 2018 by Sam Del Rowe

For its 2018 Customer Service Benchmark Report, SuperOffice analyzed the customer service quality of 1,000 companies of all sizes worldwide. In order to determine how companies handle requests for customer support via email, an email was sent to each company asking two questions: “do you have a phone number I can call you on?” and “Where can I find pricing information on your website?”. The report found that 62 percent of companies failed to respond.

With this in mind, the report offers seven tips:

  • Route requests to the right department: The report found that the average response time for the top ten companies was two hours, suggesting that the right department received the request and was able to handle it accordingly. The report suggests that companies set up rules in their customer service software or inboxes that allow them to automatically forward requests to the correct department.
  • Use automated responses to acknowledge support requests: The report advises that companies set up automated replies that are sent to customers acknowledging receipt of their service requests.
  • Follow up with customers: The report asserts that following up is an easy way for companies to get ahead of the competition, and that companies should schedule follow-up messages to be sent three to four days after their initial response to determine if the level of service was satisfactory.
  • Strive to answer questions in the first response: The report found that the top ten companies all scored 100 percent for first contact resolution. It advises that companies answer the questions they can in their first reply and include a note that they will follow up with the customer regarding any questions they cannot immediately answer.
  • Make it simple for the customer to contact support: The report found that every company in the top ten had an email address clearly visible on its homepage. The report asserts that in addition to making it easy for the customer to get in touch with the company, this practice also boosts trust as the company shows it is not afraid to hear from its customers.
  • Quality, not quantity: The report found that the top ten companies all scored highly on the content of their replies, even though some of them took several hours to respond. The report suggests that a high quality answer is better than a low quality answer, even if the high quality one takes longer to compose.
  • Use customer service tools to empower your team: The report acknowledges that delivering great customer service requires the proper tools and processes, and that companies should implement customer service software that enables them to acknowledge, track, manage, and report on all customer service requests.

These results back up similar research we carried out in the UK across the web, email, social media and chat. Essentially it found that the sheer volume of interactions mean that companies are failing to respond to queries – or if they do reply, are taking far longer than consumers are willing to wait. There’s more on our findings in this blog post

Comment by Pauline Ashenden — — March 26, 2018 @ 4:07 am

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