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5 Top Customer Service Articles for the Week of November 12, 2018

Each week I read a number of customer service and customer experience articles from various resources. Here are my top five picks from last week. I have added my comment about each article and would like to hear what you think too.

7-Eleven is testing new ‘scan-and-go’ technology by Ilyse Liffreing

(Digiday) 7-Eleven is making more moves to go cashierless — or at least give customers the option to. Starting Monday, 14 stores in Dallas will have scan-and-go technology built in the company’s mobile app, so customers can scan and pay for items on their phones.

My Comment: Amazon set the trend in motion with their version of a convenience store, known as Amazon Go. As we head toward “cashless retail,” other companies are stepping up, and one of them is 7-Eleven. This article will introduce you to 7-Eleven’s version of another way to deliver a more convenient customer experience.

What the modern gig economy is doing to customer experience by Dr. Chris Baumann

(CMO) Most marketing theory was established in the context of stable employment relationships. From front-line staff to marketing strategists and brand managers, employees generally enjoyed job security with classic benefits such as superannuation plans, stable income streams, employment rights, training, sabbaticals and long-service leave.

My Comment: The “gig economy” is a hot topic in the customer service world. Part-time (sub-contracted) employees are becoming more popular, allowing companies to staff-up when times are busy or go lean when business isn’t quite as busy. There are some benefits and concerns about how the gig-economy impacts customer service. This excellent article will give you insights you need to help determine if hiring a “gigger” will work for you.

4 Fixes for the Disconnect Between Marketing and the Customer Experience by Chris Wallace

(Chief Marketer) By 2020, the customer experience is expected to overtake price and product as a key brand differentiator. In other words, people will soon care more about how a company treats them than what they purchase or how expensive it is compared to competitors.

My Comment: Customer experience is marketing. The organizations that that know this reap the benefits of knowing what their customers expect and desire. And who better to tell you what your customers want than the people on the front line who interact with your customers every day. The author of this article shares four ideas to better connect your marketing efforts and CX efforts to your front line.

Predictions 2019: Customer Experience Comes Under Fire by Harley Manning

(Forrester) Let’s face it: 2018 was not a fabulous year for customer experience. On average, CX quality was flat, with Customer Experience Index (CX Index™) scores showing little movement for the third year in a row. And what little movement that did happen was toward the middle of our scale, where 62% of brands bunched up in an undifferentiated clump.

My Comment: Just read Forrester’s CX predictions for 2019. In this excerpt from the report, Harley Manning, VP, Research Director shares three insights/predictions. Their information is always interesting and relevant.

Don’t Make Your Customers Do All The Work by Dan Gingiss

(Forbes) You can’t expect your customers to know everything. Yes, today’s customers are more connected and have access to more information than any other generation of customers in history, but they still can’t read minds (at least not yet). So why do many companies create situations where customers need to figure things out for themselves?

My Comment: My friend and fellow CX expert, Dan Gingiss, recognizes the importance of creating a convenient experience. Just as the title of this excellent article implies, don’t make your customers do all the work. The moment they experience friction with you and your products/services is the moment that plants the seed for them to do business with someone else the next time they need what you sell. Simply put, make it easy for them to do business with you.

Shep Hyken is a customer service expert, professional speaker and New York Times bestselling business author. For information on The Customer Focus™ customer service training programs go to www.TheCustomerFocus.com. Follow on Twitter: @Hyken

 

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