Software Essentials For Superior Customer Experience

Jennifer Schulze

No matter what type of business you’re in, you need to provide a superior customer experience that will create customer loyalty and retention. One of the smartest ways to do this is to invest in top-notch software solutions that will streamline your customer support system so that you can focus on giving customers the personalized attention they need.

Check out the website of any successful business and you’ll find that it provides extensive customer support with an FAQ page, user-friendly contact information and a personalized chat option. Successful businesses also use integrated software platforms that provide instant access to customer information and transaction details. This eliminates the need for manual searches and enables their support teams to provide more personalized service with faster turnaround times.

Here are three essential software systems that will help you provide a superior experience for your customers and clients.

Help desk software

Help desk software is specially designed to bring together every channel of customer/support team interaction — email, phone, social media and website contact — and streamline them into one console. A good help desk system provides user-friendly phone/email options with quick turnaround times, as well as an instant chat option so that customers aren’t left waiting for answers. It also tracks customer communications for instant access, eliminating the need for your staff to search manually through files, emails, and transaction records.

In addition, a help desk also provides a template so you can provide comprehensive FAQ/help pages on your website, which in turn will enable customers to quickly find answers on their own without having to contact your business. These valuable features prevent backlogs, speed up turnaround times, and make your business look even more professional.

ERP software

An enterprise resource planning (ERP) system is a suite of integrated software applications designed to collect, track, store, and analyze data. It can handle everything from inventory planning, purchasing and accounting to sales and delivery. For example, if you have a rush order from a customer, an ERP system can tell you instantly if you have the item (or materials to manufacture the item) in stock to fill the order. In addition, it can give you the data and analytics you need to identify shortcomings in your customer service turnaround times.

An industry-specific ERP system will also prevent you from being overwhelmed by Big Data that’s not relevant to your company. It gives you the personal control you need over every aspect of your business — which in turn will help you provide a better product, faster delivery times, and a superior experience that will keep customers coming back for more

CRM software

Customer relationship management (CRM) software provides an all-in-one database to help you manage every aspect of a customer’s interaction with your company, from sales to support queries. It not only tracks every detail of a customer transaction; it also tracks every customer communication — from phone calls and emails to chat sessions. Staff members can instantly access this information without having to send customers to different departments in search of answers.

CRM software provides another valuable tool: the ability to help you track opportunities for your business. A CRM system stores every detail of your negotiations with prospective customers so that you can stay on top of the latest quotes or bids. This feature can help you give prospective customers the personal attention — and financial analytics — they need so that you can win them over to your business.

Investing in customer retention

According to analysts at Harvard Business School, even a five percent increase in customer retention can lead to a profit increase of 25 to 95 percent. By investing in these software solutions, you can increase support turnaround times, prevent staff backlogs, speed up transactions and deliveries, and provide a more personalized, superlative experience that will increase customer loyalty and retention for your business.

For more insight on creating a top customer experience, see Vital Customer Experience Lessons B2B Can Learn From B2C.

About Jennifer Schulze

Jennifer Schulze is Vice President of marketing for SAP. In her role, she manages customer marketing as part of the office of the COO. She has over 15 years of technology marketing and management experience and is a small business owner in the San Francisco Bay area.