31. May 2019 Blog

The importance of real-time customer information

How important is it to know everything that you could possibly know about your clients? Certainly, doing so would help you to understand their needs better, improve communication with your company, make them feel highly valued and put yourself in a position to be able to provide them with more personalised offers.

It is no surprise, therefore, that a lot of companies wish they knew more, and that they would even be willing to pay good money in return for a swathe of information about their customers. Some companies think that it’s impossible to know more about their clients than they do already, but chances are that they’re wrong.

One way of quickly and easily having more knowledge about your clients at the tips of your fingers is with real-time customer information. In fact, real-time customer analysis and information is at the core of success for any company nowadays. It is no longer an option to boost the business, but it is a must-have in order to keep up with the competition.

Why should you care about real-time customer information?

It is believed, by many of the World’s top company executives (a surprisingly high proportion of the Forbes Global 500, actually), that customer experience will be the next key battleground facing all businesses. Nowadays, customers are engaged, connected and are becoming increasingly sophisticated in the use of information available to and about them. 

So much so, that Nicholas Negroponte’s prophetic statement, made in 1998 to describe the reality of today’s modern world, needs only the bolded part being added now to remain accurate:

Like air and drinking water, being digitally connected will be noticed only by its absence, not its presence.

The modern-day connected customer expects, or even demands, that they are greeted with an appropriate offer or the right form of communication for each and every particular situation, regardless of the device or channel they are using to get in touch or be contacted on. This is precisely where real-time customer information and engagement comes not only just in handy, but as an absolute life-saving essential tool for the company. Having a knowledge of all of your individual clients’ real-time contextual situations, their specific preferences and their past purchase histories will allow you communicate in a personal and professional manner with them, rather than missing the target completely.

How can you improve your customer support efforts in terms of real-time customer information? 

Perhaps the first thing that one should do in order to have the aforementioned necessary information about customers ready to hand is to make use of existing tools designed to do just that, such as CloudTalk, which allows an agent to view a client’s real-time customer card even before answering a call from them. More features of this particular tool will be expanded upon in the following section. It is then crucially important to onboard your team to make them aware not only of the importance of being equipped with real-time customer information, but also to familiarise them with how to use such tools to help them do just that.
 
 After handling every customer interaction, the performance of the agents must be analysed to have any chance of improving upon it for next time. Bottlenecks in the organisation, which could, for example, occur in the post-customer interaction phase, must also be identified and subsequently removed in order to improve efficiency. Both of these processes should take place as soon as possible immediately following the completion of a call if you are to have a better chance of successfully carrying them out.

Making the most of real-time customer information 

Customer information is within reach and the only thing left to do is to make the most of it. As long as manual methods can be successful, to scale your efforts you may need a little help. 

As previously mentioned above, employing the use of external tools in a company can visibly boost your team performance and productivity, and help them focus on a business core. 

All of your clients’ real-time customer cards can be conveniently displayed on the screen to the agent handling their call even before the phone has been picked up. This doesn’t sound like a distant future, this happens right here and right now. 

This means that before, during and after a phone conversation, all of customers’ important information - that is, previous interactions with recordings, current purchase and order history, plus important notes on file, etc. - is displayed together in one convenient place on the screen. Needless to say that it makes the whole contact afterwards simply easier, more effective and more pleasant for both sides. 

There is nothing wrong with using tools to support your team efforts and making the work smarter, not harder. 

Using them to become well-prepared for talking with your clients is hugely beneficial and can result in the provision of excellent customer service. Being able to call a client by name upon answering their call and already being familiar with their previous interactions with the company, meaning that they don’t have to repeat the same details or problems over and over, are little personal touches of professionalism and will be greatly appreciated. 
 
Another great feature offered by external tools is the ability to view and edit a client’s details on their real-time customer card whilst a call is still in progress. This means that their information can be updated in real-time, with changes in details and the addition of new notes or support tickets, for example. For new customers who are not yet included in the database, a real-time customer card can easily be created instantly while the interaction is ongoing, with the important information being added on-the-go. Doing these things, for new or existing customers, will decrease the required wrap-up time of calls and thereby improve the efficiency of post-call analysis, helping to remove bottlenecks in the organisation that were touched upon earlier. 

It would take you a while (or forever) to do it manually. With tools, you can focus on interaction while automation in the background helps you strengthen the customer experience and relations with clients. 

Key takeaways about real-time customer information

It is now more important than ever to have a wealth of information about your clients on hand, both to satisfy their demands for excellent, personalised communication and to improve the efficiency and professionalism of your customer support team. Thanks to tools such as CloudTalk that specialise in providing real-time customer information, your company will be able to increase time productivity, thus saving time and money that can be used on improving other areas of the business.
 
Automating the process of making customer information quickly and easily available to view and edit means that not only will existing relationships improve, but you will also increase the success rate of turning leads into new clients.
 
CloudTalk can help your company with all of the above. Sign up for a 14-day trial today by visiting the following link: https://www.cloudtalk.io/demo