25 conflict resolution strategies for customer service
Learn some of the best conflict resolution strategies for customer service agents that can help improve customer experience in your call center.
The Team at CallMiner
May 09, 2023
Creating a positive customer experience is no longer a luxury for businesses; it’s a must. Getting it right provides a significant competitive advantage, but it’s easy to get it wrong.
However, customer experience management is complex. It requires various business departments to work in sync to ensure that they’re meeting customer expectations and providing consistent experiences with every interaction.
For that reason, many companies are turning to customer experience management software to better design and manage customer experiences throughout the customer journey.
The right experience management software supports a company’s customer experience management strategy across not only the customer journey but also various company departments, from marketing and sales to customer service and support. Customer experience management software collects and analyzes a vast volume of customer data to provide deeper insights into what drives customer satisfaction and customer behavior.
That’s why we’ve curated this list of tips for choosing the best experience management software for your business, as well as best practices for maximizing the value of your customer experience management solution. The following tips and best practices will help you define what you’re looking for in a experience management platform and understand how to leverage it to drive business success.
1. Look for a conversation intelligence solution. “Using artificial intelligence and machine learning, conversation intelligence solutions capture the unstructured data in audio and text-based interactions: phone calls, chats, email, SMS, surveys, social media, and more. Conversation intelligence technology can understand the meaning of words, determine the speaker’s sentiment, and identify the emotion that is driving their behavior. The result is a wealth of intelligence based on a far deeper understanding of the customer mindset and on comprehensive conversations, rather than a selective sample.” - Build better brand and customer experiences, CallMiner; Twitter: @CallMiner
2. There are various use cases for experience management software, and some solutions are specialized for specific business needs. “Experience management solutions can be leveraged for different use cases across a business, including customer experience (CX), B2B account experience, product experience, and market research. Though most offerings specialize in only one use case, some products will target multiple groups of respondents and allow businesses to segment their audiences. Products that specialize in CX collect customer feedback and deploy insights to frontline employees who can execute closed-loop actions based on that feedback. Products designed for B2B account experience collect client feedback and deliver insights to sales or customer success teams. Product experience solutions help product management teams collect and analyze feedback about their customers’ experiences with a product. Finally, market research solutions provide special features like research panels to enable businesses to survey their target audience.” - Best Experience Management Software, G2; Twitter: @G2dotcom
3. Look for solutions that offer omnichannel customer experience data collection. “Wherever customer experiences are happening, that’s where you need to be listening. The right software will provide you with tools to set up listening posts and capture customer feedback in all the right places – be it on your website, on social media, on owned or third-party apps, or in physical locations.
“Your software should be set up to gather customer feedback through a variety of methods from web and SMS surveys to Interactive Voice Response (IVR) and live chat modules. All these feedback channels should track back to the same centralized system, giving you a meaningful overview whenever you need it.” - Your guide to customer experience management software, Qualtrics XM; Twitter: @Qualtrics
4. Choose a CX solution with an intuitive user interface. “The user interface is critical when selecting customer experience management software because it directly affects the user's ability to effectively use the software to gather and act on customer feedback. A user-friendly UI can help increase efficiency, accuracy, and consistency while also promoting employee adoption and satisfaction. A well-designed UI can also reduce the learning curve and ensure that different users are using the software in a similar manner, leading to more consistent results.” - Hannah Clark, 10 Best Customer Experience Management Software in 2023, CX Lead; Twitter: @CxLead
5. Customer experience software that leverages machine learning and artificial intelligence offers powerful capabilities. “Today’s advanced technology helps facilitate and improve key business processes including CEM. Most customer experience management software utilize the power of business intelligence, artificial intelligence and machine learning to process huge amounts of data to come up with personalized content to customers as well as determine and identify customer intent, behavior and preferences. These technologies empower businesses to create programs and strategies, and provide enriching and relevant experiences to customers.” - Christopher Robinson, What is Customer Experience Management Software? Analysis of Features, Types, Benefits and Pricing, FinancesOnline; Twitter: @Financesonline
6. Choose a customer experience solution that integrates with your other technology platforms. “If you are using systems such as Shopify or Zendesk, look for a CX platform that can trigger survey sends based on customer behavior, and automatically export and incorporate the feedback data.
“This way, you can avoid duplicating effort transferring information back and forth, and your team won’t have to learn a new platform. They can act off of customer feedback in their day-to-day tools.” - How to choose the best customer experience management software for your business, Delighted by Qualtrics; Twitter: @delighted
7. Consider the size and complexity of your business. “Large businesses require a robust, comprehensive platform with lots of features that will help manage the complexity of various departments and possibly locations. Midsize businesses can opt for less comprehensive CEM software that focuses on customer interactions and quickly highlights internal challenges that negatively impact customer experience. Small businesses can consider software that help with the implementation of basic applications to monitor live chat and email discussions or has built-in surveys to obtain customer feedback.” - How to Select the Best Customer Experience Software for Your Business, Predictive Analytics Today; Twitter: @PredAnalytics
8. Look for customer experience management solution with customer journey mapping capabilities. “The goal of omnichannel marketing is to improve the customer experience. To give your customers the best experience, you should know their journey from beginning to end.
“The customer journey will change sometimes. By making a map of the customer’s journey often, you can keep track of any changes. When you map out your customer’s journey, you will be able to identify your company’s most important type of customer. You will also be able to highlight the part of your omnichannel strategy that works best.” - Omnichannel Customer Experience: What it is + Improvement, QuestionPro; Twitter: @questionpro
9. Choose CXM software with robust reporting and analytics capabilities. “The best CEM software can measure and analyze eCommerce metrics and KPIs. this makes it easier for you to understand what customers think about your brand.” - Joanna Okedara, Customer Experience Management Software: 6 of the Best Tools, BlueCart; Twitter: @BlueCartHQ
10. Customer experience management software should provide insight into customer feedback. “A good Customer Experience Management Software analyses the feedback of your customers from a granular level. Identify the next course of action to address any customer issues or resolve any queries. Close the loop and retain even a customer who has vowed to join your competitor.” - Customer Experience Management Software, SurveySparrow; Twitter: @SurveySparrow
11. Look for customer experience management software with comprehensive data management and analysis capabilities. “Another crucial factor to consider is data management and analysis. The platform should enable businesses to collect, store, and analyze customer data in real time to gain actionable insights. By consolidating customer data into a single view, businesses can gain a comprehensive understanding of their customer’s needs and preferences, enabling them to optimize experiences accordingly.” - Sundaresh Kaushik, 7 things to look for in a customer experience management platform, iTMunch; Twitter: @it_munch
12. Consider your business requirements and the needs of the business departments that will use the software (or its data analysis). “Customer Experience Management Vendor should be selected based on your business requirements. Factors like customer target market, number of brands, and geographical footprint should be considered while selecting the customer experience tools. These factors greatly affect the CEM solution.
“Businesses should also consider the list of needs of various departments like IT, Customer Service, sales & marketing, etc. Customer Experience Tools should get integrated with emails, surveys, your existing customer database, and CRM systems.” - 10 Best Customer Experience Management Software In 2023, Software Testing Help
13. Understand how your customers feel about the experience at every touchpoint. “Providing a superior omnichannel customer experience has become a critical differentiator. Research suggests that 86% of buyers will pay more for a great customer experience, and more than two-thirds of companies now compete primarily on the basis of CX.
“As you map your customer journey to better understand CX at every touchpoint, getting inside your customer’s mindset is critical. It’s not enough to simply know where interactions occur on your customer journey map – you need to know how your customers feel about their experience at each touchpoint. Analyzing a sample of customer conversations is not enough. Today, capturing every customer conversation is needed to deliver a superior customer journey experience.” - The secret to a superior customer journey experience, CallMiner; Twitter: @CallMiner
14. Customer experience solutions can help to improve employee satisfaction and engagement. “A company's dissatisfied customer always takes it up with the employees. This could decrease the employee's morale and lead to a lack of motivation, resistance to change, and more. However, the best customer experience management software and customer-centric business culture would allow the employees to satisfy the angered or confused customers. According to McKinsey's study, customer engagement was 20% higher (on average) in companies where customer experience betterment is a part of the work culture.
“The above advantages showcase the importance of improving the customer experience. However, it is not possible to manually control all the touchpoints, digital, and face-to-face interactions. That is why your business needs customer experience management tools.” - Customer Experience Management Software Guide, Software Suggest; Twitter: @SoftwareSuggest
15. The right CXM solution will help you maintain a positive brand reputation. “A feedback management feature helps companies analyze customer feedback and use it to fill any gaps in the customer experience. Analyzing feedback and implementing suggested changes make customers feel more valued, and valued customers are more likely to remain loyal to their brand.” - Customer Experience Software Buyers Guide, Capterra; Twitter: @Capterra
16. Leverage real-time data to deliver an exceptional customer experience. “In today’s competitive market, the marketing team needs real-time, secure data to deliver excellent CX. Businesses collect data through various touch points and analyze it digitally. This data, which is used in support and communications, may include a variety of data types, including public information, big data, and tiny data collected from customers. This data may also include user preferences, permissions, and the most recent contact information for services, products, and communication platforms.” - Global Customer Experience Management Software Market Size By Touchpoint (Social Media, Web, Email), By Industry (Healthcare, Information Technologies), By Geographic Scope And Forecast, Verified Market Research
17. Foster a customer experience management mindset. “A customer experience management mindset prioritizes the personalization of the complete end-to-end customer experience. It helps to achieve this at scale in real-time and on any channel.
“CXM is an approach to building relationships with customers that goes beyond marketing, intending to achieve a digital transformation that puts customers at the center of the business.” - Rushali Das, What Is Customer Experience Management & Why It Matters?, Statusbrew; Twitter: @Statusbrew
18. Consider the marketing ecosystem. “...Starbucks varies its approach to global expansion depending on the marketing ecosystem it’s operating within. Because India is a heavy tea market, Starbucks opted to not develop its offering within the coffee market. It relied on its joint venture partner’s (Tata’s) supply chain, distribution, fulfillment networks, and market-specific resources. Starbucks focused on leveraging its brand and resource complementarity with Tata in the growing Indian metro markets. Meanwhile in China, Starbucks gained insights from regional ecosystem partners that indicated that it’s viewed as an aspirational brand for young middle-class Chinese individuals. This enabled the company to anticipate market developments and changing consumer tastes.” - G. Tomas M. Hult, 8 Best Practices for Creating a Compelling Customer Experience, Harvard Business Review; Twitter: @HarvardBiz
19. Take advantage of opportunities to analyze emotion. “One component of the customer experience is emotion. Companies can focus on branding and customer service to ensure customers' emotional experience with their brand is a positive one.” - 11 Best Practices in Customer Experience, Indeed; Twitter: @indeed
20. Create easy experiences for customers. “Cosmetics company Yves Rocher earns top marks in France, with the highest percentage of customers who report having easy experiences. The brand recently transformed to become more customer centric and create a consistent, customer-first strategy across all channels. Yves Rocher uses social media to educate customers on products with tutorials to take out much of the guesswork of cosmetics.” - Blake Morgan, Customer Experience Around The World: 25 Examples Of Best Practices You Haven’t Heard Of, Forbes; Twitter: @BlakeMichelleM
21. Leverage customer journey maps (CJMs) to bring disparate teams together to improve CX. “They are a great resource to bring together disparate teams across an organization to provide greater understanding of how they can work better together to meet the needs of customers in the future.
“The CJM is a blueprint for the journey taken by the customer, marking all touchpoints. It should extend from touchpoints designed to raise awareness and interest – including advertising and marketing efforts, PR, etc. – through to the touchpoints associated with usage e.g., sales reps, accounts teams, support services, complaints handling, etc. It should also extend to the cessation of the relationship with the company e.g., switching to an alternative provider.” - Three Insight-Driven Ways to Future-Proof Your B2B Customer Experience, B2B International; Twitter: @B2B_Insight
22. Utilize explicit data to increase brand engagement and improve the customer journey experience. “Traditional implicit data¸ information data mined to indicate short-term interests or needs, has value in data strategy. However, findings from more than 2,000 hours of Voice of the Customer research interviews with clients such as Gilt Groupe, MassMutual Financial Group, IBM, Hewlett Packard Enterprise and QVC, shows it does not deliver the response rates or meet the expectations of many B2B and business-to-consumer customers.
“Research findings indicate that today's customers want to drive high levels of relevance and personalization through the explicit preferences they provide. Explicit data is self-profiled preference information customers provide in the preference center of a site or through dialog boxes.” - Ernan Roman, In customer personalization, explicit data matters, TechTarget Customer Experience; Twitter: @TTBusinessTech
23. View your customer service team as an extension of your marketing department. “There’s a popular expression: customer service is the new marketing — based on research showing the power of CX through online reviews, and their ability to drive new customers. Studies indicate 90% of consumers’ research online reviews prior to making buying decisions, and 60% of the buying process is already done before they reach out to a vendor. Two factors come into play here — quality of offering and customer service.
“By incorporating marketing into support, and discussing advanced new product offerings, discount offers, requests for reviews, product feedback and upcoming releases as a part of all customer interactions, companies can take what is typically seen as a cost centre and turn it into a powerful profit centre instead.” - Errol Greene, Customer experience: Nine best practices that separate the leaders from the laggards, MyCustomer; Twitter: @MyCustomer
24. Reward compliance with behavioral performance standards. “Constant requests for ratings are overwhelming as we interact with numerous suppliers every day. You may be creating guilt rather than relationship strength. Instead, analyze customer comments and behaviors to identify staff’s and managers’ behavioral performance standards. Monitor compliance with these standards as your metrics to reward performance. To represent these standards metrics, I’ve coined the phrase Customer-Critical Factors (CCFs). CCFs are leading indicators of customers’ experiences. A leading indicator allows you to adjust performance proactively.” - Lynn Hunsaker, 23 Customer Experience Practices You Should Stop in 2023, CustomerThink; Twitter: @customerthink
25. Don’t neglect speed, convenience, and the right information as core elements of a positive customer experience. “While many companies focus significant time and money on design that pops or cutting-edge technology to wow customers, these aren’t as essential to the experience equation as many companies believe. Customers expect technology to always work and often don’t take notice of it (unless it’s malfunctioning). They want the design of websites and mobile apps to be elegant and user-friendly; they want automation to ease experience. But these advances don’t matter much if speed, convenience and the right information are lacking.” - Experience is everything. Get it right., PwC; Twitter: @PwC