Black Friday and Cyber Monday in 2017 will go down in the record books – online shopping was more convenient than ever, mobile purchases spurred sales numbers to record highs, and more retailers offered free shipping.
So, now that your gifts and impulse buys are already shipped, all you have to do is sit back, chill, and wait until the packages are left at your doorstep, right?
Uh, sorry. Unfortunately, this is when the real trouble starts. Maybe the package was delivered to the wrong address, your new TV has a cracked screen, or those shoes came in the toddler version – not the adult size six you ordered.
"Contacting your retailer is not something that people look forward to, but it doesn't have to be as frustratingly painful as it used to be. Today, there are more ways than ever for consumers to connect with companies and advancements in technology that help you get faster service," said Rachel Faulkner of Genesys, an expert in customer experience solutions.
Here are five easy tricks that will help you get better, faster customer service:
1) Send a message instead. Contacting customer service doesn't require sitting on hold for 10 minutes. Dialing into a contact center to speak with a live agent remains popular, but companies also staff communication channels such as text messaging and web chat. You still get the human touch to resolve issues – just without the wait time.
2) Social channels aren't just for bad reviews. While it can be therapeutic to vent via social media, it's also a great way to reach support centers. Social channels such as Twitter and Facebook may be staffed by senior agents who are empowered to take action immediately on your problem. Feel free to post your positive comments, too!
3) Don't fear the chatbots. Great strides have been made in artificial intelligence that help systems recognize and quickly address your concerns. Use these advances to your benefit by messaging a chatbot to resolve routine or simple requests for super-fast response time.
4) Please hold? You don't have to anymore. If given the option, ask for a return call instead of waiting on hold when trying to access customer service over the telephone. It's usually more convenient and will allow you to move on to other things so you're not stuck listening to bad hold music.
5) Be nice. At this time of year, customer service agents deal with hundreds of anxious customers a day — and are often on the receiving end of their frustration. Engaging in "small talk" allows agents time to review your case history. If you can be patient for 30 seconds, it may help the call go more smoothly and get your issue resolved faster.
Pro tip: Most agents aren't empowered to fix everything. Some issues need advanced support and can't be resolved by the average support agent. However, you can search the Internet for executive support contact information or ask for customer retention when you dial the main service line, which usually leads to more qualified agents.
Follow these tips and not only will you resolve your support issues more easily, but you won't reach for a bottle of aspirin afterwards. Happy shopping.
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