Customer Support | 7 MIN READ

Top 10 Customer Service Trends for 2021

Hence, it is must to update yourself with the new customer service trends that will be prevalent in the SaaS industry in the year 2021.

Shoeb Ahmed
Shoeb Ahmed
Dec 18, 2020

customer service trends

customer service trends
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As more and more companies are realizing the need to become customer-centric, their investment in customer service – both financial and conceptual – is rising rapidly. The need to become efficient in all the customer service processes are becoming more relevant than ever. Hence, it is must to update yourself with the new customer service trends that are prevalent in the SaaS industry.

With so much competition in the marketplace, customer servicing plays a crucial role in customer retention. As stated by Shep Hyken, today’s customers want customer service in their own terms, when and where they want. A small miss in giving a good customer experience can cause them to leave you permanently.

Companies are experimenting with ever newer ways to serve the customers. But what remains most effective gets popularity and soon enough, everyone starts following that. So, to stay ahead of the curve, it is worth having a look at the latest trends in customer service that are going to hit the road in the year 2021.

So, let’s look at those trends here.

#1 More control over metrics to measure ROI

Measuring the impact of customer service has always been difficult for entrepreneurs. There are many metrics like customer satisfaction, net promoter score, etc., but hardly they give a clear picture on their impact on business.

Metrics like how many tickets have been closed and how fast they were closed have been serving the tasks of measuring the customer service efforts. But now company owners are keener on what ROI they are able to generate through the customer service department.

Hence, companies would be more interested in measuring the impact on final outcomes like customer retention or reducing churn rate through customer service.

#2 Instant access to service for the customers

The time period for which the customers have to wait to get answered is reducing considerably. Features like chatbot are hitting the marketplace quite effectively and companies are adapting fast to this new way of customer interaction.

With the advanced AI and machine learning capabilities, the frequent queries of the customers can be handled quite effectively. Not only that, they are also helpful in reducing the manpower required for the customer care. Research shows that chatbots are able to save more than $8 bn in the customer care costs for the companies by the year 2022.

#3 Proactive customer engagement is going to be the top priority for the year 2021

With the rising trend of companies adopting customer success functions, companies have realized the importance of proactive customer engagement in driving business growth. It is much better to prevent the issues than waiting for them to raise the queries.

Customer success managers make sure that customers don’t face any challenge while using their product. Hence, they take every measure to educate customers and provide them with self-sufficient resources. This customer service trend will pick up drastically for the next year.

#4 Increased spending on technology

For any business, scaling is the only way towards sustainable growth. But instead of spending money on increased headcount, companies are planning to spend heavily on technology. The economies of scale work best with technology.

With increased spending, companies are able to automate their customer service efforts. More efficiency can be brought into the system and it leaves a good impact on the customers. With advanced tools like Freshdesk, companies are not only able to serve their customers well but also curb churn. Customer service technology trends have shown that year 2021 would bring more investment into this.

#5 Customer experience would be one of the greatest priorities

Customers want better service from their vendors more now than ever. Companies have realized how important it is to give greater experience to the customers. Gone are the days when customer service used to be a “good-to-have” function in the business.

By the beginning of year 2021, customer experience would overtake price and performance of the product as the key brand differentiator. Businesses have to increase their spending on a customer experience platform. A constant monitoring on the customer health score is must to keep the customer in the green zone.

#6 Omnichannel support would be a key differentiator

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In earlier days, the helpline numbers used to be the only way to contact customer service. But now companies are opening up to newer channels to ease customer communication. Providing support over social media would be the biggest advancement towards customer servicing.

They have to also open other channels like emails, in-app messaging, chat messengers. You never know which customer is more comfortable with which channel. Hence, it is best to keep all paths open to reach out to you.

#7 Customer support over video call

The benefits of providing real-time video support can hardly be overemphasized. If you are able to connect with the customer over a video conference then there is nothing like it. It is almost like giving physical personal support to your customers while handling all their worries and anxieties. Also, when needed you can ask your customers to share their screen and resolve the issue immediately. This is going to be game-changer in the customer service trends for the year 2021.

#8 Enabling self-service

Many customers don’t prefer to go through a long process of raising a query and waiting for the resolution. They would rather resolve the issue by themselves. Hence, to help such users, companies can provide self-service resources that help resolve the issue faster.

There are two benefits of this – first, you are helping your customer educate themselves. This means product adoption would be fast. Second, through self-service, customers are helping you reduce the cost of serving them. The self-service trend has been picking up from the past few years and will only see more rise in the coming years.

#9 Customer service as a company culture

Customer-centricity is already becoming a companywide culture from the past few years. It is not just the responsibility of the customer service or customer success team but the whole organization has to be aligned with this philosophy. Serving the customer is a feeling which every employee has to imbibe, no matter from which department they are. Companies have shown immense growth by infusing this philosophy in their culture.

#10 Personalization while serving the customer

Nothing can please a customer more than when you develop a rapport with them by knowing them. With the advanced data collection technologies, you can have access to the customer’s details in a second.

And when the customer is relieved of the burden of identifying themselves every time they have to raise an issue, it helps immensely in developing relationships. The customer feels more privileged and would be happy to continue doing business with you.

Wrapping up

Customer service trends show that the general perception of customer care as an auxiliary service is changing. The core reason so far for the companies to consider it as a supplement was only because of the traditional business model of one-off purchase.

But now with subscription-based business models, companies are keener on nurturing relationships with their customers. This helps in a prolonged business and increases the customer lifetime value.

The customer’s queries are being given much priority with an intention of reducing the resolution time. This is the only way forward for the companies that want to sustain in a competitive marketplace.

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Originally Published December 18th, 2020, Updated January 8th, 2021

Shoeb Ahmed

Shoeb Ahmed

Shoeb has over 12 years of experience in architecting and developing software applications and creating digital marketing content. He has worked with globally competitive CMMI Level 5 organizations in the BFSI domain. He has also worked with SaaS organizations in developing the marketing content that has helped them win multi-million dollar deals.

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