The Demand for Your Support is Larger than you Expect

by Feb 26, 2019

The demand for support by your customers may be far greater than current transaction levels suggest. ServiceXRG illustrates the potential unmet support demand by customers and suggests why responding to this demand is important but will likely increase assisted support demand.

Unmet Support Demand

There is a significant unmet need for support.  This is a potentially daunting scenario.  Imagine that customer demand for support would grow by over 100%.  Perhaps the more important consideration is the impact that lack of support will have on customers’ likelihood to remain customers.   

An unmet service need can result in a customer defecting to another product or situations where they stop using your product.  Both scenarios will impact the potential for retention, churn and recurring revenue.

This chart signifies an opportunity for technology vendors to provide more value to more customers through self-help and automated service interaction.  It is cost prohibitive to provide these extended services though assisted means, thus the web and mobile channels offer the best way to interact with more customers and positively influence their perceptions and encourage positive behaviors such as writing positive reviews, new purchases and continuation of existing relationships.

Support Demand vs. Support Need

Recommendations

Ask yourself, are all of your customers getting the help they need?  Are they getting this help from you, through Google searches, or not at all?  Consider the following:

How many customers use your self-help resources but do not seek live assistance?

  • Compare self-help service demand to assisted support.
  • Determine if customers get the answers they need through self-help.
  • Conduct a survey after self-help transactions to establish how effective self-help resources are.
  • Read Where Customers Look for Support Information (hint: it may not be from you).

What are you customers “talking about” on social platforms and communities – yours and other public forums? 

  • Ask customers if they are getting the rights answers.
  • Make certain customers know how to get support directly from you.

Do you conduct relationship surveys with customers (e.g. not post transaction surveys)? 

  • Establish how many customers need help with your products.
  • Determine how many customers seek assistance directly from your services group.
  • Does the expressed customer need match current demand?

How many active customers do you have (e.g. how many products have you sold in the past year, 2 years, 3 years, etc.)? 

  • Establish the size of your installed base.
  • Determine the percent of customer covered by a service contract.
  • Establish what percent of the total installed base you hear from.

Do you have a high churn rate? 

  • Conduct win-loss analysis to establish why you lose customers.
  • Determine if top churn issues are related to product usability.
  • Identify if/how support could lower churn rates by providing needed assistance.

Bottom Line

You have customers that need help but are not asking you directly.  When customers are in distress with your product but not getting the help they need you risk of losing them.

Yes, you have a full plate handling the customers that do seek assistance.  However, you need to engage the customers that need help, but do not ask for it.  If you don’t you will lose them. Customer onboarding, adoption, retention and other customer success related activities will likely increase support demand but lower churn – be prepared.

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