Learn how a 3rd party customer service can help your business optimize its budget and other benefits of using these services.
Running a lean operation has never been more critical to business survival. The COVID-19 pandemic taught all companies that it’s essential to optimize their business budgets and trim unnecessary spending.
Hiring third-party customer service providers enables firms to rein in their expenses without compromising service quality.
In this article, we’ll explain the benefits of 3rd party customer service, emphasizing how it allows you to optimize your budget.
54% of firms globally already use third-party customer service providers. The top reasons that they cite for doing so are:
- Access to professional solutions
- Cost savings
Other benefits include 24/7 service, scalability, improved support with multilingual agents, and access to the latest technology.
The Benefits of Third Party Customer Service
Access to Professional Solutions
96% of consumers will ditch a brand if they receive bad service. Handling support requests has now become an integral part of earning client loyalty. Hiring customer support outsourcing services from such companies like SupportYourApp provides you with access to highly-skilled service professionals.
These consultants are hired for their outstanding communication skills. They then undergo rigorous training to create a positive customer experience and build the client relationship.
Third-party providers enable your business to share the costs of running a call center. Firms enjoy significant savings by not shouldering the burden of:
- Consultant benefits
- Infrastructure for the service team
Companies also avoid the delicate balancing act of having enough agents and ensuring that they have sufficient work during quiet periods.
As 2020 proved, firms must be quick to react. They will not always have the time to recruit, onboard, and train new consultants for their support centers. It may also be difficult to downscale teams during times of financial crisis. Outsourcing to a third party customer service company makes it simple to run a lean operation able to change direction quickly.
What Types of Third-Party Customer Service Providers Are There?
Traditionally, outsourcing support meant handing over the answering of phones. Today there are many digital channels that companies must also take into cognizance. Most support providers offer a comprehensive range of solutions, though some opt for specialization.
Working with one company that covers all the following areas makes it easy to provide clients with a cohesive experience.
Telephonic Customer Service
These companies provide traditional phone support. You may opt for them to handle:
- All calls to your company
- The overflow when you are busy
- Support after hours
Email Customer Service
Viewing emails as less urgent than calls may be a fatal error. At the very least, companies must provide an automated response acknowledging that they’ve received the email. Firms should also aim to resolve the query within one to six hours of the client sending it.
Third-Party Chat Customer Service
A third-party chat customer service handles live chats with clients on your website in real-time. Bots are useful here, but only to a limited extent. Live consultants are better able to understand the nuances of conversation that bots cannot replicate yet.
Social Media Customer Service
Clients today expect to be able to reach out to companies via social media. They require fast, preferably immediate responses to queries on your social media pages or via messaging apps.
While many companies are hesitant to engage in query resolution via social media, it can prove a valuable tool. Engagement on the pages leads to better exposure for the company. Even negative comments can be helpful if companies answer them correctly.
A support service can acknowledge and answer service requests on your social media pages. They can also deal with complaints in a timely and adept fashion. Most importantly, however, they can acknowledge positive comments from clients.
Many companies lack the resources to acknowledge all engagement on social media and so focus on negative comments. That’s problematic because how you respond to all comments, negative and positive, affects the customer experience. Ignoring positive encouragement from clients may damage the relationship.
How Much Does a Third-Party Customer Service Cost?
Your next question is, no doubt, “How much does a third-party customer service cost?” The answer is that it depends on the level and type of support. The best companies will find out more about your business and needs before they provide an estimate.
When you perform a cost-benefit analysis, however, you’ll learn that outsourcing is the preferable option. The alternative is expensive. The average consultant in the United States earns between $22,000 and $38,000 per annum, excluding commission and benefits.
Therefore, running a small in-house call center with six operatives starts at around $11,000 a month for salaries alone. BPO companies typically charge you for the capacity that you use, rather than a flat fee per consultant.
They’ll allow you to customize your package to maximize support while optimizing your budget.
Selecting the Correct Third-Party Customer Service Company
As always, the secret to success is partnering with the correct firm. It’s wise to vet the company thoroughly.
Before you sign any contracts, consider the following:
- What level of support is included?
- Can the company provide references?
- Is there a minimum volume per month?
- Is the company well-established?
- Are the packages customizable?
- Is it easy to upgrade as necessary?
- What are the reviews of the company like online?
- Can you perform a random test, and if so, how did the consultant fare?
- Do you require multi-language support?
- What quality control measures have the firm put in place?
- What information will reports contain?
- Will you have shared or dedicated consultants?
- Are you able to access all the records and recordings relating to your company’s service calls?
- What procedure do they follow for onboarding new clients?
- How do they recruit and train consultants?
Partnering with a third-party provider enables you to optimize your budget by sharing costs effectively. It allows for greater flexibility and access to a highly-skilled team dedicated to improving the customer experience.