What is self-service customer experience?

Self-service customer experience is the perception a person has of an organization based on a collective set of self-service transactions. It's a customer opinion that's formed over time and shaped by multiple interactions with a brand.

Alternatively, the phrase "self-service customer experience" is frequently used to describe a single transaction or specific self-service solution, as in, "The confusing IVR menu caused John to have a poor self-service customer experience," and "These virtual agents have been optimized to provide a superior self-service customer experience."

In either case, the self-service customer experience needs to be fast, convenient, and effective to satisfy customers' preferences to handle their own matters on their own terms.

How can contact centers improve the self-service customer experience?

Self-service should be a prominent support channel for every customer service operation. After all, most resolution journeys begin with either a website or Google search. Beyond those options, businesses can offer self-service through solutions such as virtual agents, chatbots, conversational IVRs, and searchable knowledge bases.

The focus of self-service customer experience should be making customers successful at helping themselves. Here are some tips for doing that.

  • Meet your customers at Google. Because so many people try to find answers through Google, businesses should focus on being at the top of the search engine results page. Making a good knowledge management system available for search engines to crawl and index is a great plan of attack.
  • Offer contextual help. One of the reasons self-service attempts fail is because users can't find help when they run into obstacles. Organizations should design their self-service solutions with plenty of help available when customers are likely to need it the most.
  • Don't overdo "containment." Containment is a key metric that tells organizations how many users start and end their transactions within self-service. Designing self-service with only containment in mind rather than customer success can lead to users feeling trapped and creates a poor self-service customer experience. DIY customers should have a clear path to agent assistance.
  • Use smart analytics to identify the right self-service tasks. Self-service isn't the right solution for every transaction. Tasks that are rule-based, simple, and narrow in scope are the best candidates for self-help. AI-powered analytics tools such as interaction analytics can analyze all customer service interactions at lighting speed and identify, among numerous other insights, contact drivers, which is invaluable to the process of pinpointing suitable self-service tasks.

How NICE can help elevate your organization’s self-service customer experience

NICE is the market leader in providing customers the cloud contact center software they need to deliver consistently exceptional customer experiences. Capabilities include:

  • CX Analytics that help you identify the best self-service tasks and measure the performance of your DIY solutions

CXone provides an intelligent, unified suite of applications covering the breadth of contact center management disciplines, simplifying administration and streamlining the user experience.

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