Customers are a company's lifeblood, as failing to keep clients happy can result in sales losses and tarnished reputations. This has made the contact center and other outward-facing departments crucial teams in today's fast-paced society. After all, a new study revealed that brand loyalty can be determined in a mere 76 seconds.
This was one of the key findings in a new LivePerson survey of more than 6,000 online customers around the world, which revealed that individuals expect access to a live representative within 76 seconds. If employees do not interact with a prospective or existing client within that time frame, the consumer will either resort to using a slower form of contact or simply abandon the website altogether.
The study found that roughly 69 percent of respondents said they are more likely to be loyal to a brand that offers live customer support. Another 82 percent of individuals said their feelings toward a company improve when live chat solutions are available.
"The digital era is massively de-personalizing, so anytime brands can engage their customers with a more personalized, human touch, it makes a meaningful difference," said Anurag Wadehra, chief marketing officer at LivePerson.
Now that ecommerce has turned into one of the primary ways people shop for products and services, having the ability to provide real-time collaboration tools between prospective clients and representatives is becoming a major contributor to brand awareness and loyalty.
The new way to sell
Business leaders must be sure that employees prioritize customer care if they want to give their organizations an edge in an increasingly competitive marketplace. Although selling a firm's particular products is still a major part of the equation, the actual good is not the only thing individuals are looking for. Growing enterprises must learn to sell themselves, as well as their offerings.
LivePerson revealed that people prioritize speed, as waiting for a representative on the other end of the phone line or chat is simply unacceptable. A separate Dimension Data survey highlighted similar findings, revealing that consumer expectations are increasing, especially among younger Generation Y individuals. Consumers are no longer content with having to give the same information multiple times and will often take their purchase elsewhere if a firm's contact center doesn't live up to its intentions.
"The pace of technology adoption by end users is driving contact centers to evolve and gather speed, which means the complexity of transactions has increased," said Andrew McNair, head of global benchmarking at Dimension Data.
As the business world grows increasingly competitive, executives must plan ahead and educate employees on best practices when handling incoming customer queries. Contact centers and other departments that either respond too slowly or do not provide real-time communication tools to clients will find it increasingly difficult to attract consumers and turn them into loyal customers. Because clients are the enterprise's lifeblood, failing to appeal to their needs will only introduce unnecessary challenges.