The holiday rush is coming: are you ready?

The holiday rush is coming: are you ready?

July 29, 2013
The holiday rush is coming: are you ready?

The holidays are a great time for the retail industry. According to the National Retail Federation, retailers pulled in $579.8 billion in sales in the month of December 2012 alone. With the big swing in volume of tickets and customer interactions, how do you maintain the same high quality of customer service?

The last thing you want is to let the quality of your customer service slide during the most important season of the year. If you want to be ready, you need to start right now. Using the Zendesk Benchmark, we took a look at retailers using Zendesk to see what might have helped our customers get high customers satisfactions ratings.

Since we know that you’re getting ready for the holiday season right now, we’ve come up with two tips, based on our findings, that might be essential for keeping customer satisfaction high during the holiday season:

1. Improve your self-service offerings
Most of your customers prefer to find answers on their own. In December of 2012, retailers with a customer satisfaction rating of below 75 had less than half the number of customers viewing self-service content than those with 75 or higher.

The takeaway is to focus on improving your self-service offerings. Luckily for you we have plenty of content to help you understand the value of self-service.

As well as a growing list of resources to help you create and manage a successful self-service portal:

2. Reduce first response time
In December of 2012, companies with a customer satisfaction rating of below 75 had a significantly higher first response time than those with with 75 or higher. On average, they took about 14 more hours to respond to a ticket.

We’ve said it before, but speed is often the deciding factor between a good and bad customer service experience. Focus on improving first response time right now. That way you’ll be prepared long before the holidays. There are several ways of approaching this:

  • Adopting a follow the sun model will ensure that far flung customers don’t have to wait for your local business hours
  • Triaging tickets will allow you to quickly respond to easy tickets and escalate the more difficult and higher priority ones
  • As was the case with ModCloth, streamlining your support ticket workflow with tagging, rich archiving, and social media integration can greatly improve your ability to respond quickly
  • Use macros! They’re great for everything to support requests that can be answered with a single, standard response to automating an “I’m starting work on this now” type response so customers know that they’ve been heard.
  • Quickly respond with links to relevant information in your knowledge base while you work on the ticket, giving them the opportunity to solve their own issue. Something else that can be automated with a macro

Bonus tip
Full response time is another important metric to focus on. Companies with a customer satisfaction of 90 have a slightly better full response time than with those below. But there is a factor beyond customer satisfaction that needs to be taken into consideration: cost. Taking more than a day to resolve an issue can cause the cost of resolving that issue to skyrocket from $4.70 to $7.80.

You can read more about how retailers can streamline the customer experience can help improve your resolution time and increase profits.

Learn how Gilt Groupe increased customer satisfaction and significantly reduced it’s resolution time

Learn more about Zendesk for retail