Life for small businesses has significantly changed over the past two years. But a popular question from any business owner is still “How can I improve my customer service experience?” A good place to start is by understanding the latest business communication trends.
A major disruption – like a pandemic – accelerates technology adoption. Ideas that were slowly getting accepted suddenly saw widespread usage. From remote to hybrid, we sure have come a long way. Most of these communication trends are tied to those changes. To make the most of these, here are the biggest communication trends that will affect small businesses.
During the pandemic, virtual meetings were the only option for both internal and external business communication. Since it has demonstrable advantages, organisations are unlikely to get rid of it. But virtual meetings are also changing the way consumers interact with businesses.
Since it’s easy to make eye contact and see someone’s body language, customers might prefer virtual meetings to phone calls. Being able to see the other person also raises trust and credibility, which is important for those businesses in legal, healthcare and financial services.
Social media platforms aren’t merely to showcase products or services. They are fast becoming channels for customer interactions. More than a third of customers have reached out to a business through social media channels, according to a survey.
This means that small businesses should stop seeing Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, YouTube and other platforms only as marketing tools. Customers expect a business to get back to them within an hour. There should be dedicated personnel to monitor and respond to queries on social media.
Business text messaging has become a vital channel for businesses to interact with their customers. For a generation that’s used to messaging platforms and social media, phone calls can come across as tedious and intrusive and emails may sound too official.
Texting has enormous benefits for businesses. You can use a scheduling app to send appointment reminders. This will decrease the number of no-shows and increase revenue. You can also use chat apps for conversational marketing to communicate offers and launch products. For small businesses, the trick is to find an affordable communication tool that offers all the features.
Prompt resolution to their problems is more important for customers than anything else. Since small businesses may find it difficult to employ dedicated staff to answer customer queries, it makes sense to use automated chatbots. This is one of the most effective ways to improve customer experience and decrease the number of complaints.
A chatbot can give answers to frequently asked questions. What’s important here is that the vast majority of the queries are predictable. For example, if you sell your product or service online, queries could be about a particular order, time of delivery, return or cancellation policy etc. A chatbot can give relevant answers to all these. Automation also ensures that your customer service can function 24/7 without interruptions.
Small businesses are discovering that data can be their best friend for revenue growth and customer satisfaction. Until recently, this was exclusively reserved for big businesses and those in the technology domain. But now, everyone from freelancers to neighbourhood stores can use data to grow their business by delivering better customer experiences.
A good customer relationship management (CRM) software will reveal opportunities and problems. It can tell you the time it takes you to generate leads, the number of quality leads, the deals you close etc. A chatbot can show you whether your customers are getting their orders on time and if there’s a common pain point.
Chalkboard has been designed to make life easier for small business owners and freelancers. The virtual number app has an advanced chat feature to dramatically improve your business communication in the following ways:
Easily message your customers while keeping your mobile number private
Use the app from your mobile phone, laptop, or tablet
Effortlessly organise contacts into lists
Broadcast messages to whole groups
Update customers about their orders through chat
Automate requests for online reviews
Be notified when customers leave reviews
Follow up with customers to improve customer experience
Download Chalkboard and start your 14-day free trial. It’s time to take your business communication to the next level.
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