How to Create an Omnichannel Customer Service Strategy

The key to creating a successful omnichannel customer service strategy is to continually focus on one keyword in that phrase — customer. Far too often, customer experience strategies are made up of technology and process pieces that are stitched together — or not — to provide customers the ability to connect with a company. They’re not necessarily designed with the customer in mind.

These environments generate extra effort and frustration for both customers and employees. It not only affects business results in soft metrics like satisfaction scores, but also affects the bottom line in operational cost and revenue generation.

Customer experience is the new battleground for business. For example, in the Northridge Group State of Customer Service Experience 2019 report, 72% of consumers say they’re likely to switch to a competitive brand after just one bad experience. There are some essential steps to creating an omnichannel technology strategy that enables your business to outperform your competition and increase the bottom line.

First, let’s discuss what omnichannel really means. What it doesn’t mean is offering customers a bunch of different ways to contact your company. This common multichannel approach creates operational silos and many potential problems, including:

  • Service priority is based on interaction channel — not customer value/opportunity
  • Multiple resources work on the same customer request through many different channels
  • Customers receive conflicting information, which generates more volume/less confidence

And all of this creates huge costs for the company in effort poor customer satisfaction.

True omnichannel experiences are orchestrated. They’re guided experiences that lead customers to the right resources and tools, at the right moment, to drive outcomes. An omnichannel experience is frictionless journey across many touchpoints that results in an outcome that benefits both the customer and the company.

And the sheet music for this orchestra is the customer journey. Place yourself in your customers’ shoes.

To understand this, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What journeys are my customers on?
  • Where are they in that journey?
  • What are they trying to accomplish?
  • What or who are they interacting with?
  • How can technology guide them to the best result?

In this blog series, we’ll discuss many key areas to consider as you establish your omnichannel customer service strategy:

  • Omnichannel technologies and customer experience: Omnichannel strategy is much more than just technology. It’s leveraging technology to enable true business outcomes. It’s the process of mapping your technology capabilities to business results.
  • Implementation is only half the story: Even if you offer an incredible solution, it provides little to no value if no one adopts it. Establish the roles, partnerships and communication plans to establish deep adoption of your technology so that it becomes the enabler of business success.
  • Creating the business case: Understanding all the benefits that can be generated through your omnichannel solution and strategy. Evaluate all perspectives around how the omnichannel capabilities benefit the business.  If you improve one metric, you probably influence another as well.
  • Bringing systems together: It’s important to bring all disparate technologies and vendors together to create an omnichannel orchestra — not a gathering of noisy soloists. Create a strategy in which technologies work together and are unified so that they communicate what they know about a customer, the journey, the intents and dispositions.
  • Security: Protect your company, your customers and your employees. Consider the cloud. Data is the new fuel to drive differentiated experiences, so you need to protect all aspects of data to prevent any type of privacy fire.

It’s an incredibly exciting time to design your omnichannel strategy — and there are many tools to consider. So many, in fact, that it can be overwhelming.

We understand that creating an omnichannel customer service strategy can feel like an enormous task. All great journeys begin with the first step. We’re here to help you define your direction for when you take that first step to build your omnichannel CX blueprint. And contact us today to learn more.