We are now well into the busiest part of the year, the Holiday Season. For many companies, this is a make or break time. Holiday sales can determine for retailers whether they end the year in the black or in the red.
Even if you are not in retail, there are many reasons why this can be the busiest time of the year for your company. The ramp up in your customer support volume also means that your customer experience is more visible. This increased exposure may make or break your brand image, especially if your CX makes your customers see red.
Dial Your Own Number
Robert Heaton, Professional Sales Coach at TOP Gun Business Academy International, recently published a blog post, “Have You Ever Called Your Own Corporate Number?” with a suggestion that is worth following, especially during this time of year. Heaton suggests that top executives should call their company switchboard from time to time. “Try it! You could be very surprised at how your brand image is being presented,” he says.
Heaton cited actual examples of what some executive learned:
- A mid-sized software company forwarded calls from their primary company phone number to their technical support desk because “reception was too busy.” Imagine getting that message if you are a customer. As a result of this call forwarding, customers who need technical support are probably frustrated that getting to a live person who can provide answers takes longer, and customers who are inquiring about a non-technical issues are likely frustrated that the technical support help desk doesn’t know the answer to their non-technical question. And, if you are a technical support agent for this company, imagine how you feel about this practice!
- Another mid-sized technology company has a recorded message, "I'm sorry, there's no one here to take your call at the moment. Please call back later." How many customers are really willing to “call back later?” This company is not only providing a poor customer experience, they are also turning away business.
- And finally, a large organization sampled had a self-service "press 1 if you want...." type automated system. In their case, the 'system' had gotten into a loop, so regardless of which option is chosen it simply went back to the beginning. Surprisingly, it had been like that for a couple of weeks before the error was discovered.
Know Your Risk
So there you have it. You may be risking damage to your brand image with a poor customer experience, and you could even be losing sales. The examples above are just a brief glimpse into the negative customer experiences that occur every day without your knowledge. Some other issues that can occur include:
- Poor audio quality when talking directly to an agent or within a self-service application
- Calls that are unanswered or dropped after being answered
- Service outages caused by excessive call volume or equipment failures
Obviously, you need to know what your customers are experiencing. Your phone call, however, can only tell you about the customer experience at the moment in time when you are connected to your switchboard or self-service application. How can you be sure that the customer experience is what you expect 24/7?
Did you know that Cyara enables its customers to dramatically reduce the risk of exposing their customers to poor experiences? In fact, Cyara customers report a 70% decrease on average in defects that impact customers. Rob Quigley, CT Operations Manager at Sky, a global broadcasting company, says, “Cyara gives me the comfort factor that our applications are functioning as they are supposed to be functioning. At the first hint of a problem, Cyara will alert me.” Read the Sky case study here.
So, how will you know if your customer experience is damaging your brand? From time to time, it’s a good idea to call your customer support line to see for yourself. But, it’s an even better idea to call Cyara to know that your customer experience is working as it was designed. To find out more about Cyara Pulse for monitoring your customer experience, contact us at [email protected].