What The Blueprint looks for in great customer service software
So many elements make up a great customer service platform, but these three distinct features can either make or break these tools. We always look for these top three features at The Blueprint when reviewing any customer service app.
This is the absolute base requirement for any customer service software. If you can’t create, manage, track, and resolve issues within the platform, is it designed for customer service?
While some platforms offer ticket management systems, others go above and beyond to find easier and more efficient ways to manage tickets. Some examples: through color-coding, providing support resources in the tickets, or connecting the tickets to their live chat system.
Knowledge base management
Knowledge bases are the perfect way to provide answers to the technical questions your customers bring you. Your brain isn’t a giant encyclopedia, so a knowledge base is the perfect way to point your customers in the right direction so they can fix their problems with detailed instructions.
The best customer service software options allow direct access to your knowledge base within the customer ticket itself so you can grab the answers you need quickly.
What happens when your customer support team leaves for the day? Problems don’t just stop because your team clocks out. That’s why it’s important to come with a self-service portal.
This way, your customers can find the solutions they need when your team isn’t available or the issue is simple and doesn’t require a human touch.
How your business can benefit from using customer service software
There are few drawbacks to using customer service software and many more benefits. These are the top three benefits your business will see when adopting a new customer service software solution.
Improved customer relationships
Great customer service platforms give you the tools and capabilities to ensure quality customer service and build a happy user base.
No one expects your products and services to operate at 100%, but when something does go wrong, a quick and correct response is the perfect way to maintain and improve customer relationships.
Improved accuracy in issue resolution
Imagine you went to your local auto mechanic and told them your vehicle’s problem. They didn’t write anything down or make any notes about the situation, but hours later, they tell you they fixed an unrelated problem because they forgot what you said.
That’s what customer service would be like without a structured system in place for managing issues. Customer service software provides that structure so your team can solve the right problems quickly and accurately.
Centralized record of past issues
It’s always good to maintain a record of any issues with your customers. This way, you can go back and reference if a customer has concerns with a solution you provided. Customer service software maintains and stores records in an easily searchable database.
What are the deal-breakers when selecting customer service software?
The biggest deal-breaker for me when selecting any software option is ease of use. When I’m purchasing software, the first thing I consider is how long it’s going to take me to learn this platform and whether the complexity will interfere with the work I’m doing.
When you buy software for your business, you’re buying it for everyone who interacts with it, not just yourself. Why buy something you’ll have to take hours explaining each time someone new is introduced to the platform?
The second deal-breaker has to be the features list versus the price. Why pay more for something I can get cheaper elsewhere? While not every comparison is one-to-one, trial periods are the perfect time to find the positives and negatives of platforms, and if the differences come down to price, I’m going with the cheaper option.
Is live chat a necessity?
No, live chat functionality is not a necessity, but your job becomes a lot harder without it. Not every issue is meant to run through a standard ticketing system.
Sometimes your customers are just looking for simple answers to simple questions, and live chats provide that fast solution. Countless examples of good customer service prove prompt and accurate responses to consumer concerns are beneficial, and that’s why live chat is a huge benefit.
How much does customer service software cost?
As I say with all software types, the price varies. However, the range typically starts around $10/month, per user. The highest I’ve seen is somewhere in the range of $500/month, per user. The lower prices fall on platforms better suited for smaller businesses, but not every expensive software product is best suited for enterprise-level businesses.
Beware a lack of transparent pricing. My rule of thumb is if a software vendor isn’t willing to openly display its pricing, then the product is probably very expensive. Keep that in mind during your search.