Stumped for Growth Ideas? Use Customer Support Data to Drive Revenue

Awful feeling, isn’t it?

You’re struggling to find new opportunities to increase growth this quarter.

But no worries. The solution to your problem is staring you in the face.

Customer support data holds the answer to earning more revenue. It’s an effective tool for identifying gaps in your customer service and uncovering when to upsell in the sales cycle.

“Every support team answers customers. Great support teams use data to discover trends, make the business case for fixing big problems, and improve the customer experience,” writes Simon Ouderkirk, support team lead and happiness engineer at WordPress.com.

Don’t stay in a growth rut. Here’s how customer support data helps the bottom line.

Learn More About Your Buyers

Analytics is useful for understanding your consumers’ behaviors and interests. And with support data, your team can learn what matters the most.

Support tickets reveal the inner thoughts of your customers. Based on their questions, you’ll grasp not only what they need, but also their expectations for your service.

For example, customer support data may show that buyers prefer finding a solution via a knowledge base rather than sending an email and waiting 24 hours for a response. And that’s likely, because 76% of US online adults used FAQs on a company’s website in 2014.

If a knowledge base improves customer success, your team must take action to provide consumers with quality answers to their questions. Create a step-by-step instructional guide or produce short video tutorials to walk them through the process.

Support emails also can tell you more about a customer’s level of frustration regarding a specific issue. In the email below, you’ll notice my direct tone. This message was my fourth interaction with the company in three weeks about the same problem.

shayla-price-fourth-email

Studying customers equips your team to aggressively cater to their needs. Happy customers are more likely to continue purchasing from your brand than disappointed buyers who never got their issues resolved.

Business growth happens when your team is vigilant about customer satisfaction. Using signature happiness ratings in emails is one way to gauge your audience.

happiness-ratings-in-support-emailImage Source

A happiness rating encourages immediate feedback to help you fine tune your service. Plus, it allows you to connect with customers on a human level.

Strive to learn more about your customers. Support data can lead to satisfied customers.

Identify Critical Issues

Customer support is a practical channel for spotting issues affecting your business systems. Without analyzing the data, you’ll remain stagnant and won’t know how to grow your internal processes.

For instance, how many conversations do you have with your customers every month? The total may indicate consumer growth and the need to hire new team members. Or it may highlight ongoing problems with your product.

Also, what’s your average response time? It’s important to know when customers are receiving replies from your team. A high response time may pinpoint gaps in your support staff’s efficiency. Or it may be an indicator of greater tech issues.

Support data offers relevant information to tweak product features and change your brand messaging. Collecting data helps your predict future behavior and notice shifts in consumer interests.

Analytics is powerful for anticipating when customers may need product assistance. It also gives you insight on when to contact future buyers before they even communicate with your team.

In-app messaging makes it easier for your brand to talk directly with customers. No more guessing how consumers think about your services. Instead, send them a message to gather their insights.

quuu-customer-email

In the example above, the social promotion tool Quuu uses in-app messaging to ask customers questions about a possible change in their service. What’s great is that it doesn’t involve typing out a long answer. Rather, the customer can simply give a thumbs up or a thumbs down.

Customer support data helps your staff detect internal challenges. Conduct your own analysis to improve your revenue growth.

Shape Your Content Resources

Content marketing continues to serve as a strategy to generate brand awareness and funnel qualified leads. However, failing to create the right content might stall potential revenue.

From customer questions and complaints, develop relevant content that addresses buyers’ concerns and offers a solution. It’s not enough to just post a generic blog post on your site, hoping that the audience gets value from it.

Create an editorial workflow that allows your customer success team to provide suggestions for future content. Do consumers need more details about a specific product feature? Are buyers struggling to understand how you compare to a particular competitor?

Content opens the doors to reducing buyers’ fears and quelling any hesitations hindering consumers from purchasing your product. Moreover, during the onboarding process, content reassures customers that they made the right decision.

Wista provides a catalog of resources for its customers. Their team offers video tutorials on everything about video marketing, from selecting the music to choosing a microphone.

wistia-library

Also, consider updating content that receives a steady flow of traffic. Observe what’s attracting customers to the resource and brainstorm how your team can optimize the experience.

“If you see that one help page is being accessed far more than others, you should strongly consider optimizing that content so that you’re effectively guiding a user through this certain experience or even break the content into additional sections to address more specific issues,” states Kelli Simpson, marketing manager at DataHero.

Data leads to better content, and better content steers the sales funnel in the right direction.

Connect With Customers

Diving deeper into support data is an opportunity to connect with customers. In today’s market, consumers demand brand relationships that aren’t superficial.

Customers desire to build authentic relationships with their favorite brands. And because products are extensions of a buyer’s lifestyle, consumers want to feel comfortable about supporting brands.

Support data exposes what type of relationships consumers prefer. Similar to a friendship, some will only want occasional updates, while others will make an effort to talk to you on a regular basis.

But it all boils down to treating your customer with respect. In the Facebook thread below, notice how the Zappos support agent responds to the customer. The company wants to delight the buyer despite the unfortunate circumstances.

zappos-facebook-comments

Earn brand loyalty by using support data to develop personalized services. Customize the experience at every stage of the sales journey.

Segment your support tickets with specific tags to identify patterns. Then, incorporate that data into your services.

“A crucial part of customer service is being proactive and anticipating what people might need so they can use your product successfully. Would you rather have your customers think of you as a sommelier or a clerk at a quick mart?” says Jim Belosic, CEO and co-founder of ShortStack.

Build a bridge between your brand and the customer, and use data as a guide to strengthen the relationship.

Data to the Rescue

Growth is a priority for your business. To attain your sales goals, focus on customer support data as a solution.

Monitor customer interactions to learn their interests and needs. Use data to spot gaps in your sales cycle, and transform your content resources with customer insight.

Customer support isn’t just for the customer. Take advantage of data to grow your business.

About the Author: Shayla Price lives at the intersection of digital marketing, technology and social responsibility. Connect with her on Twitter @shaylaprice.

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