Many believe that purchase is the culmination of the seller-customer relationship, which means you’ve done everything right to lead a customer to a win-win deal. This logic seems undeniable, especially for fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) sectors, where the most effort is put into gaining new customers.
But how about the post-purchase experience, which is the engine for retention? The strategic, long-term view on retention is not just repetitive sales but seeing a customer as a long-term partner. Repetitively delivering value to a customer is key to generating higher LTV throughout their relationship with the company. And “delivering more value” is not always about forcing new sales but also providing excellent post-purchase experience, which is, obviously, the key to building fruitful and long-lasting relationships with customers.
Stats to keep in mind:
71% of consumers ended a business relationship due to a poor customer service experience;
61% of customers take their business to a competitor after a poor customer service experience;
The financial sector lost $44 BILLION as a result of bad customer service;
Bad service consists of confusing automated self-service, long waits, poor attention and inexperienced representatives.
It’s no secret that customer service and support are an expensive treat. But is there a chance to optimize the budget without compromising the quality? Yes!
Firstly, let’s have a look at the two key components of customer service costs, which can be optimized with Salesforce:
Training, salaries (mostly hourly-based), overtimes.
Time spent on case resolution, communication with customers, and gathering information to resolve customer issues.
Knowing this, let’s look at the strategies that Salesforce-using companies can adopt to reduce customer service costs while keeping Customer support quality top-notch.
Cut Service Operations Costs
The proper starting question to optimize the customer service budget is: “How can we do well and even better, but in less time?”
As you may notice, TIME is at focus here: if you reduce time spent on case management, bureaucratic routines, interaction steps, and resolving the issues, you will deliver both better value and spend less on the whole process. Let’s have a look at how Salesforce features and technologies can help.
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Automate low-value routines and tasks
Organizing a work process and working itself are two separate things. The more software and artifacts you need to perform your task, the more steps you need to accomplish - the less time you have to really jump into a case, empathize with the client, and seek an outstanding solution. Moreover, routines drain energy and kill creativity, as tonnes of effort is spent on going rounds.
Salesforce provides prominent opportunities for automation, and Salesforce Einstein AI is at the top of them. Pairing with Service Cloud makes the process more seamless: it helps with Reply Recommendations, Case Classification, Case Routing, Case Wrap-Up, and more. Need assistance with communication in typical cases? Enable Einstein-based chatbots, capable of learning in progress and adjusting to changing clients’ needs. Here is what to count on:
✅ 24/7 Interactive Support: issues resolved at any time of the day and night. ✅ Multi-language communication.
✅ Reduced workload thanks to automation: This capacity allows companies to manage customer support processes even with a compact team efficiently.
✅ Cost-Efficient Learning: AI-driven continual learning enhances support quality without requiring specialized training interventions.
Create advanced self-service options for customers
By empowering customers with intuitive self-service tools, you will not only cater to the growing demand for instant solutions but also reduce the workload on traditional support channels like live chats and call centers. Salesforce enables FAQs, an advanced knowledge base (and built-in searches), case studies, and step-by-step guides with instant feedback forms. These are the proven ways to release precious human time on more complicated cases, whereas repetitive and typical issues are resolved easily with the unobtrusive guidance of user-friendly help centers.
Keep customer feedback abreast and analyze it for future actions
Gathering customer feedback provides valuable insights into both customers' pain points and the overall quality of your support process. It may help eliminate the unnecessary process steps, which only waste time and resources and have low value for both sides, help with cross-sales and retention, and help see the under-serviced customer segments.
From a budget-optimization perspective, capturing customer feedback can be automated or semi-automated, which hits two targets: sharpening your ability to deliver value and saving costs on manual feedback collection.
Salesforce provides a large variety of tools to run NPS, monitor customer ratings for resolved tickets, distribute surveys after chat sessions, and incorporate online survey forms into your website and help centers.
Optimize Staff Training and Workplace Maintenance Expenses
Integrate communication channels for fast and seamless support
Customers expect excellent support, regardless of the communication channel or the timing of their inquiries. They look for consistency in communication quality and speed across various channels and touchpoints. For instance, they might raise a question on social media one moment and then want to discuss the same issue with your agents via email the next. This happens daily because it’s natural for a customer to perceive your brand as a monolith entity and their interaction with it as a single story.
However, if these experiences of interactions are not aligned from a company’s side, resolving the issue will undoubtedly take longer than necessary, thus leaving a customer confused.
Your agents would need to communicate with each other, resend information, and collaborate on the problem, putting effort into creating the right single-view understanding of a situation. In some cases, you may need to transfer customers from one agent to another for a basic issue that could have been resolved in a single interaction.
Salesforce enables omnichannel interactions via both Service and Marketing Clouds and allows third-party integrations via API. This means you can integrate social media, messengers (examples - WhatsApp, Telegram), ERPs ( example - Netsuite), office software (examples - Microsoft Teams, Slack) and much more.
Create a single view of customer information
A single-view customer profiling system is the key to eliminating the mess in clients’ data. It performs as a unified and user-friendly data storage, which dynamically updates the information about customer purchases and interactions with the company.
In practice, advanced profiling breaks down the walls between departments like sales, marketing, service, and product.
The idea is to get everyone singing from the same sheet when it comes to understanding clients and serving them at each stage of the funnel.
Think of it as a way to collaborate smoothly among different teams, quickly adapt to what customers want, and quickly respond to their requests, saving hours on gathering information about each case and interaction history. Salesforce has advanced, editable, and dynamic profiling systems. For example, it’s important for your service to track a client’s career path, or food preferences, or allergies, or pets, whatever, while demographic information is of low value. In Salesforce, your teammates may adopt client views to the company’s market strategy and add and operate relevant data that makes sense in building customer relationships. As a result, your teams would spend far less time navigating across the communication history, scattered in different knowledge bases. This will also provide more insights on how to help customers or even drive them to try new offers based on their previous experience.
Create an advanced knowledge base for employees
Surveys repeatedly state that up to 25% of the service team's working time is spent searching for information to help clients with their issues. Imagine turning all this time into building relationships, not low-value routines!
The outputs will be noticeable: there is no need to grow the customer support department by leaps and bounds if the capacity of each team member grows and covers more customer requests. How to do so? Invest in a unified employee knowledge base with detailed instructions, processes, contact references, and FAQs. Have a teammate responsible for updating the base.
Reduce Customer Service Costs with a dedicated Salesforce Partner
Salesforce is a powerful tool for process management and cost optimization for various industries. We are here to consult you on technology strategy and Salesforce development.