By identifying online customer journey bottlenecks, mobile operators will uncover the pain points that cause high customer effort when they are in need for support. According to Oracle, reducing the customer effort has a major impact on the overall customer satisfaction.

Today’s 24/7 consumers search for support online, respect no opening hours and expect issues to be resolved effortlessly. Any other outcome will bring frustration.

With this post we provide you with the following insights:

  • Better understanding of the pain points that create high customer effort
  • Practical solutions on how to reduce the customer effort and make a difference to your customers experience

Customer effort

Customer effort (CE) is one of the important attributes of the customer experience. In simplest terms it represents the amount of effort a customer needs to take in order to resolve an issue.

In this blog we focus on the following pain points and provide solutions for them.   

  • Difficult to find solution pages
  • Complex navigation, customer dropout and no first contact resolution
  • Inability to solve the issue online
  • Configuration issues and software malfunctions that increase churn
  • Lack of tutorials for the Triple-play customer

Accordingly, we will provide practical solution on how to address those pain points.

1.   Pain point: Difficult to find support pages

When in need for help, customers use Google to find the right answer. If your content is not optimized for search engine purposes, chances are that your customers would not find it. They would rather discover a random blog post or even worse – your competitor’s website.

Solution: Align your content and SEO strategy 

In order to make sure your content appear on the first page of Google results, you need to align your content and SEO strategy. Anticipating customer queries and using keyword planning tools will help to make use of customer service related searches by your (potential) customers.

 

2.   Pain point: Complex navigation and failed self service attempts

With the increasing variety of smartphones and operating systems, the help and FAQ pages of mobile operators are getting more complicated with long lists of issues and solutions. Pages with more than 50 FAQs are no exception, which makes it more difficult for customers to find the solution. This is certainly the case on mobile. In these cases, many customers feel overwhelmed and are forced to switch channel.

Solution: Leverage technology to resolve problems faster

It is possible to reduce the effort and further speed up the customer journey by implementing Mobile Device Detection (MDD). When a customer accesses the support page on your website through a mobile device, MDD immediately recognize the device and route the customer to the right tutorial in your selfservice support pages.  This takes several steps out the support journey, improves the user experience and ensures an effortless experience for customers.

Similar as for device selection, some customers drop out of the journey when they need to select their operating system. Resulting in a failed self-service attempt. Therefore, it worth implementing an OS Selector where the customer will be shown what the most used Operating Systems are for that device type. This represents an important step to a quick resolution for the customer since the tutorials are OS-specific.

 

3.   Pain point: Inability to solve the issue online

According to Forrester Research, 72% of consumers prefer to use online selfservice to resolve their support issues rather than contacting the company via phone or email. As today’s customers are more tech savvy they prefer finding answers and solving their problems themselves. They have a shorter patience for customer support. Considering customer’s growing expectations, it does not come as a surprise that their frustration quickly grows when their needs are not met.

Solution: Provide customers with support content that ensures problem resolution

Make sure you know which device issues your customers search for the most.  After the key problem areas and devices are recognized, make sure tutorials addressing those issues get produced. Through our experience, we have identified that presenting content step-by-step with a supporting visual delivers the best results. We do this to reduce the CE and minimize the dropout rate. Once content development is completed, ensure it is updated accordingly and new devices are added on a monthly basis to your selfservice software.  

 

4.   Pain point: Churn because of configuration issues and software malfunctions

According to Ovum, the software related-faults are on the rise and 7 out of 10 consumers had experienced an issue or malfunction during the last year. Many of the problems that customers face, caused by poorly chosen phone and/or app configuration settings, are not recognized as a breach of warranty and respectively a responsibility of the manufacturer.

Whether or not Mobile operators wish to deal with these “soft” software malfunctions customers are turning to them for support and blame them if the issue is not solved. According to the same study performed by Ovum, 14% of the respondents said they would look to purchase their next smartphone from a different provider, based on their malfunction experience.

Solution: Automatic configuration and “one click fix” tools

It is a good idea to include advanced tools as “one click fix” and automatic configuration options to your online support centre. This will reduce considerably the customer effort and improve the overall experience and satisfaction.  Furthermore, with these tools at your disposal, you will be able to deflect or shorten considerable amount support calls and save costs.

 

5.   Lack of tutorials for the Triple-play customer

VAS and OTT present a good opportunity for additional revenue with a very little extra effort. Customers have the opportunity to buy services on top of their basic subscription and mobile operators use it to strengthen their relationship and ARPU. However, the instructions and tutorials for example for set top boxes are often scarce or incomplete which decrease chances resolution to happen during the first attempt.

Solution: Provide customers with step-by-step tutorials and troubleshooters   

Ensuring that your customers find the support they need online will make them less likely to churn from the service you provide.  The customer experience will increase and benefit both existing customers as well as future customers.

Conclusion

Online is the preferred support channel for customers and its importance will grow in the future.  Online selfservice is more and more transforming from a strong competitive differentiator to a business critical requirement for every mobile operator. Adopting relevant strategies and advanced tools will considerably reduce customer effort and increase customer loyalty.