In this competitive world, it is essential to attract customers to grow a business successfully.
Customer service is one of the major parts of charming the customers, and it is necessary to deliver the services customers expect as soon as possible.
It gives them a good impression of your company, which they’ll share with potential customers.
Slow customer service response times will definitely impact business growth in the other direction.
So, reducing customer support response time is one of the major aspects we have to consider.
Customer response time is a metric that customer service leads closely monitor. In this blog, we’ll see some ways to improve the customer service response time of a customer service department.
What is customer service response time?
Customer service response time is the time it takes a support team to send replies to customers who have created tickets.
Average response times vary according to the nature of your business and the channels your customers use to contact you.
Average response time is the total time taken to respond to tickets over a given time, divided by the total number of responses over a given time.
Benefits of improving customer response time
A poll conducted by Netomi indicates that 30% of consumers will only wait two minutes for responses on a web chat, highlighting the importance of improving customer response time.
Doing so can bring various benefits to businesses, contributing to customer satisfaction and overall operational efficiency.
Enhanced customer satisfaction
Faster response times generally improve the customer experience. Waiting for a reply can be frustrating, especially if the matter is urgent.
Quick responses help alleviate this frustration. Prompt replies also give customers the feeling that their concerns are important and that the company is eager to assist them.
Sending an initial reply helps maintain customer satisfaction and patience as your team prepares a more detailed response. A canned response with an estimated wait time can help.
In a market where consumers have many choices, the speed of a response can be a key differentiator.
A company that responds quickly to customer queries can stand out from competitors and attract more customers.
This can be especially important in industries where products and services are similar and there are a lot of choices.
Increased loyalty and reduced customer churn
Quick responses build trust and foster a positive relationship with customers.
When clients feel valued by receiving timely support, they are more likely to remain loyal to a brand. This can translate to repeat business and a higher customer lifetime value.
Customers who experience slow response times may become frustrated and switch to a competitor.
By improving response times, companies can reduce the rate at which they lose customers. Thus, quick response times can contribute to a lower customer churn rate.
Positive brand perception
A commitment to fast response times reflects positively on the brand, signaling professionalism and customer-centricity.
Improving response times can lead to better reviews and acknowledgements, which can be powerful marketing tools. Overall, it can improve the public’s view of your brand.
Prompt responses to inquiries about products or services can lead to quicker purchasing decisions, potentially boosting sales.
Customers who might otherwise abandon their shopping due to unanswered questions can be converted into sales with timely assistance.
Better crisis management
In times of a crisis or when dealing with complaints, a swift response is critical.
It can help to mitigate damage to the company’s reputation and show customers that the business is proactive in addressing issues.
Effective ways to reduce customer service response time
Here are some techniques to help your support team to improve their customer service response time:
- Analyze your support team workflow and performance.
- Set up an automatic response to customers.
- Create canned responses.
- Deploy integrations.
- Categorize issues created in tickets based on priority.
- Use a self-service knowledge base and FAQs.
- Track customer service response time.
Analyze your support team workflow and performance
If you find that your average response time is longer than your expectations, analyze your support team performance and workflow structure.
In addition, detect the commonalities in tickets that take a long time to resolve to find the causes for delay.
The dashboards and reports in help desk software can make this easier by visualizing the team performance data.
Dashboards allow you to track the current status of support tickets and provide a summarized view of the activities you want to analyze.
Through these reports, support leads are able to gauge the customer response time for each agent individually and know the steps to take to boost their productivity.
Set up an automatic response to customers
Sending automatic email responses acknowledges that you have received your customers’ queries.
These email responses are common email templates that do not provide any specific information regarding tickets. Also, it is not considered a first response.
It’s a good idea to link to FAQ pages and knowledge bases in the automatic email responses to educate customers about your self-service tools.
This will help them to solve some issues by themselves, taking up less of your support team’s time.
You can include your typical email response time in your automated responses to give customers a realistic idea of when their issues will be resolved.
Create canned responses
Canned responses are a prewritten set of response templates or messages for frequently asked questions in your support tickets.
Agents can create and use canned responses to reduce the customer support response time for common questions.
Moreover, they can utilize their time fixing less common issues.
If you employ a help desk software solution, which already puts you at an advantage, you can use it to integrate the third-party apps you use.
You can integrate help desk tickets with various apps and services, like Jira and Zapier, in order to improve workflow, execute actions with triggers, and keep your support team up to date on the status of customer-reported issues.
Integration helps to reduce the response time for help desk tickets.
Prioritizing the issues in tickets
We can label the tickets as critical, high, normal, and low while creating or assigning them, based on their issue type, urgency of the resolution and the impact of the ticket resolution.
Therefore, the support team fixes the most important issues reliably.
Handling tickets in the order they arrive is not a good method. Each customer’s ticket is important to resolve, but every ticket is not urgent.
By prioritizing the tickets, the agents can see which client issues should be resolved first and send a quicker response for the tickets with critical and high priorities.
Using a self-service knowledge base and FAQs
Most customers prefer consulting a knowledge base or FAQs compared to contacting the customer service team.
You should have the FAQs and knowledge base pages available and prominently visible in the help section of your website, so customers can find the solutions by themselves.
Thereby, this reduces the incoming ticket volume and improves time management, leading to quick responses to customers with less common issues.
Support agents have more time to focus on responding and resolving the urgent issues that require their attention.
Track customer service response times
The average response time varies for each company based on its size and business type.
Sending a first response is important, but resolving the ticket in timely fashion will also improve your customers’ satisfaction.
You can track the KPIs for your average first response time and final resolution time.
With an eye on these, you can get insight into your service team’s performance and where agents or the process in general may need improvement.
Based on current averages, you can set realistic goals to achieve and display them to your agents so they know what’s expected of them.
Being able to pinpoint areas for improvement will give your agents clearer paths to achieve those goals.
Good communication with your customers is essential both for retention and the reputation of your company.
BoldDesk provides awesome features to reduce your customer support response time and improve the productivity of your support team.
Try a live demo to see how BoldDesk could help your support team be more successful.
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