Complete guide to “the BEST customer service tool”

to the best customer service tool !

  • Definition of customer service software
  • 3 main benefits
  • 5 key types of software
  • 8 customer service software tools
  • Choosing software for your business

What is customer service software?

Customer service software is a centralized system within a company for tracking, prioritizing, managing, responding to, and resolving customer queries or employee requests en masse.

Inefficient tools like spreadsheets or a shared inbox create silos and hinder the customer (or employee) experience. At its most basic level, customer service software provides business with a ticketing system to unify customer conversations across channels in a single location and provide good customer service.

This equips a support team with context—about who a customer is, where they’re coming from, and what they’ve reached out about in the past—regardless of channel.

Taking it a step further, customer service software can be integrated with a CRM to give agents access to context from external sources, such as a marketing automation tool or billing system.

Benefits of customer service software

Customer service software can benefit companies of all sizes and types—from multinational enterprises supporting millions of other businesses in multiple languages, to small consumer-facing businesses that need to answer customer questions quickly without hiring an army of support reps.

Here are three key benefits of customer service software:

  1. Drives customer satisfaction and loyalty
    When businesses can provide fast, personalized responses to customers, they drive customer satisfaction and loyalty. And 52 percent of customers report going out of their way to buy from brands they’re loyal to, according to Zendesk’s Customer Experience Trends Report, 2020.

  2. Fosters a seamless agent experience
    When agents have the tools they need to collaborate and streamline workflows, they’re more prepared and motivated to provide better customer care. This leads to greater productivity and saves the business time and resources.

  3. Gives businesses the ability to scale smarter
    Customer service software gives a business the power of customer-centric agility—in other words; it enables a company to grow and scale based on the needs of its customers.

Types of customer service software

Customer service can be internal — supporting the employees within a company —or external —supporting the people who buy or use its products or services.

Each customer service channel is often considered a different type of customer service. Here are the main types of customer service you should know about :

Live chat software enables agents to solve customer issues in real-time, from where they already are, such as the homepage of your website or inside your mobile app.

This gives a business that ability to be proactive and get ahead of an issue before it happens or even occurs. For instance, an e-commerce company might offer live chat on its checkout page to answer frequently asked questions before a customer abandons their cart.

Live chat also enables a business to offer support around the clock. While your agents are busy being humans, chabots can handle customer requests for them.

A phone conversation remains an effective way to solve a customer’s problem, especially for high-stakes issues. It’s sometimes even more effective than drawn out email conversations or real-time chatting, thanks to the personal touches that come with a phone call like a human’s voice. With features like call recordings, smart internal routing, access to the full customer history, and automatic ticket creation, call center software enables customer service representatives to be more strategic.

  • Email

Email is the bread and butter of customer support. Similar to the phone, it’s long-ingrained, and remains a preferred channel among older generations. Email often serves as an internal form of support as well as an external one. A Human Resources, Payroll, or IT team, for example, could use email to answer questions for full-and part-time employees.

 
With a knowledge base, community forum, or customer portal, support teams can empower customers to self-serve. In fact, 81% of customers would rather figure out an issue on their own.

But this is only possible if support teams have tools to make knowledge creation and upkeep easy. For instance, AI can flag when content is out-of-date or when a new article topic is needed. It can also use agents’ collective knowledge to automate resolutions for low-touch tickets.

The proliferation of messaging channels—like WhatsApp, Apple Business Chat, and Facebook Messenger—has changed the way that people get in touch.

That convenience factor has made its way to customer service as well. Customer service software allows customers to get in touch over the same messaging channels they use to communicate with friends and family.

The benefit of using customer service software to communicate over messaging channels is the ability to keep conversations and context in a centralized location. If resolving a customer’s issue starts with a message then necessitates a follow-up phone call, all of that information is logged within the same support ticket.

Go beyond simply meeting your customers where they are

Customer feedback has told us that customers have preferred a choice of channels for a while now. But an effortless customer experience means more than simply meeting your customers where they are—that’s table stakes.To create a seamless, consistent experience across channels, a business will need a customer service software partner that enables it to go a step further and create a single, connected view of its customer—one complete with conversation history and context that moves with them from channel to channel.

8 best customer service software tools to enhance the customer experience

  • Zendesk
  • Sprout Social
  • Hootsuite
  • MailChimp
  • Apple Business Chat
  • Facebook
  • SurveyMonkey
  • Slack

Customers expect to communicate with companies using the channels they prefer, which now represent a host of technologies to staff efficiently and connect to your tech stack. Here are some customer service tools that help a business provide great customer service.

Introducing Zendesk

Zendesk’s customer service software empowers businesses to build effortless customer experiences. Conversations flow seamlessly across channels, leading to greater productivity and satisfaction all around.

Zendesk Agent Workspace customer service software tool

The Agent Workspace within Zendesk’s Suite equips agents with all the tools they need to collaborate with each other, other teams, and deliver fast, personalized responses on any channel—from a single, unified interface.

Zendesk’s customer service software is quick to implement, easy to use, and scales to fit the needs of businesses of any size:

Zendesk for enterprise companies

Enterprise companies need the right balance of simplicity and sophistication to align large teams and technology around what matters most—their customer. Zendesk equips an enterprise organization with the tools it needs to meet the needs of a diverse customer base on the channels of their choice while ensuring the experience is a personal one.

A large, dispersed company also means managing multiple agents and their many unique skill sets. Zendesk provides flexibility to customize your support solution with tools like advanced workflow capabilities and AI-powered automation and self-service—which means tickets get to the right agents, and agents have the knowledge they need to solve any problem.

Zendesk also seamlessly integrates with other tools, data, and communications across all departments to ensure smooth customer interactions and less miscommunications within complex operations.

Zendesk for SMBs

Zendesk gives small and mighty teams the gift of efficiency. It’s powerful yet easy-to-use, and designed to help your customer service team work better together, making the most of their time and energy. Plus, it’s easy to customize with the tools you already use so you can build on what you have.

By working within Zendesk’s centralized workspace, you’ll have all the tools you need to keep track of customers’ questions and share the information they need, right when they need it. And, by using Zendesk’s AI-powered automations and dynamic workspaces, your team can work smarter, faster, and reach more customers.

Zendesk for Startups

When you provide your customers with the experience they expect, you win their trust and loyalty in return. Zendesk’s omnichannel support solution empowers startups to be wherever their customers are. Integrate support channels like email, chat, and phone into one place, and save time by offering self-service options.

The best part? Zendesk for Startups provides a free 6 month credit—including access to tailored resources and a growing network and community of customer experience leaders.

Learn more about Zendesk

KERRY EXPRESS
Demeter ICT involved in Zendesk implementation at Kerry Express, starting from customer service process design, configuration, integration with Telephony and Chatbot, training, testing, data migration and Go-Live Support. The implementation time was around two months.
LINEMAN
Demeter ICT participated in Zendesk implementation at LINE MAN WONGNAI. The scope of work is involved with customer service process design, configuration, integration with Telephony, training, testing, data migration and Go-Live Support. The system was up and ready in one month.
Cathay Pacific Airways
“As a customer-centric airline, it is essential that Cathay Pacific communicates with our customers on the channels they prefer. Messaging is fast becoming the preferred mode of communication of our customers and we’re looking forward to enhancing our customer experience with these new Zendesk capabilities.” - Lawrence Fong Group GM IT and Digital, Cathay Pacific Airways
TRUE
Demeter ICT helps TRUE implement the Zendesk system. The scope of work is involved with customer service process design, configuration, training, testing, data migration and Go-Live Support. This is another ideal case that the customer started from a small portion of Zendesk deployment in order to prove the concept and expand significantly during the past few years.
Riot Games
“Zendesk is very much focused on the 'player' experience, like we are. I feel like we’ve always been able to speak honestly with each other.” Shaun 'BlueFire' Randall Product Manager Support Engineering at Riot Games
Evernote
“We love the help center in Zendesk because it’s easy to use. We get some great analytics out of it in terms of which articles are being used the most. It helps us to make adjustments and to see what’s helping our users.” - Gerald Hastie Director, Global Customer Experience at Evernote
Tesco
“Zendesk allows us to treat our colleagues with as much care as we give our customers.” - Adam Bruce Lead Product Manager, Service Desk at Tesco
Discord
"If we hadn’t invested so heavily in incredible support and our customer experience, we’d probably be just another app. Even if we’re just sharing cat memes, we’re constantly engaging with our customers, so they feel like they really know us as people. That’s a big part of our brand, and that starts with great support." - Danny Duong Director of Customer Experience at Discord
Airbnb
“Having a partner that really understands our business, and how ambitious we are, is huge—because service, at the end of the day, needs to be in lockstep with every single track of work that’s happening within Airbnb.” Shirley Lin Product Lead of the Support Products Group at Airbnb
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