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Customer Service Outsourcing is when a trusted third party manages your customer service process, acting on your brand’s behalf to answer queries, resolve issues and improve key metrics such as response time and inventory churn.
Positive customer experience interactions are key in acquisition and retention strategies. Reaching out for support or additional information suggests a strong purchase motivation. By outsourcing your customer service, you allocate a highly specialized and dedicated resource to this valuable area of your business operations. At the same time, you win back time for your existing team to be reallocated more effectively.
If your brand is growing rapidly (and you simply don’t have the time to market and recruit for the additional customer service staff you’d require), or if you’re looking to grow your cross-border ecommerce offering and expect to need multi-language support, then customer service outsourcing represents a clear opportunity.
The process of outsourcing your customer service will be spearheaded by your Customer Support Manager. However, having a third party act as the public face of your brand is a big step. As a result, your Head of Operations, COO or even CEO are likely to be a part of a decision.
When selecting a vendor to handle your customer service, you’ll need to be assured of their experience and expertise. A robust training process and internal quality checking of their agents should be an integral part of their operations.
Consider the aspects of support which are most important to your business such as multi-language support, or upselling and cross selling as part of the support process. Decide on your success metrics in advance (such as conversion rates linked to a support interaction) to help you find the best fit for your business.
Finally, ask what this service can deliver in terms of additional insight. What measures do they have in place to help you learn from your customer support interactions? Feedback you receive from the customer service team (whether internal or external) helps to direct your product development, conversion and customer approval ratings, so you’ll want to make sure this valuable data can be captured, delivered, and acted upon.