Web Based Self Service21st November 2020
Web self-service is a type of electronic support (e-support) that allows customers and employees to access information and perform routine tasks over the Internet, without requiring any interaction with a representative of an enterprise. Web self-service is widely used in customer relationship management (CRM) and employee relationship management (ERM).
Web self-service is an online facility that allows users to perform routine tasks over the Internet without the assistance of a support agent such as accessing information like bills, changing profile information or even doing basic troubleshooting for devices and services. When the specific users of a Web self-service portal are employees, this facility is called an employee self-service (ESS) portal, and they can often do things like check their own attendance, request resources, request vacation leaves and even file complaints without the need to contact the manager or an HR representative. If the Web self-service portal is meant to serve customers of a product or service, then this service is called a customer self-service (CSS) portal. Depending on the kind of product or service, customers can do things like checking the remaining balance of their data or mobile plan, paying bills, editing profiles and even accessing knowledge bases for troubleshooting and usage of a device or service.
The definitive feature of a Web self-service portal is the lack of a human agent who interacts with the user. This usually eliminates confusion and frustration on the user’s end as he/she does not need to interact with someone. It can even help an organization save money and retain customers, depending on the quality of the portal.
When the support is specific to online employee interactions, the practice is known as employee self-service (ESS). When it is specific to customers on the Internet, it is called customer self-service (CSS).
For employees and customers, self-service offers 24 hour-a-day support, and immediate access to information without having to wait for an email response or a returned telephone call. Ultimately, the success of Web self-service depends upon the quality and quantity of information available and the ease with which it can be accessed.
Deploying Web self-service applications benefits a company in a variety of ways. The most prominent motivation is the lower cost, as compared with telephone or email service delivered by a company representative.
A more controversial enterprise benefit of self-service is the ability it affords the company to gather personal information about the people who use it. Tracking and analysis software may be used to create a pseudonymous profile of the user for research and targeted marketing purposes.
Benefits of Web-Based Self-Service
When you empower your customers to resolve their pain points, you improve your chances of boosting customer loyalty and advocacy. Additionally, there are a number of benefits that result from web-based self-service which positively impact your business’s bottom line.
Save your customer service and support reps valuable time.
When you readily provide answers to your customers’ frequently asked questions and information about how to resolve their own, your reps will have fewer calls, tickets, and emails to respond to.
This saves them valuable time by allowing them to focus on the customers with complex problems instead of those with issues that could be solved with the help of some type of self-service support (e.g. knowledge base article or automated chatbot).
- Reduce your customer service and support costs.
Web self-service helps you drive customer service and support costs down, too. When you provide the answers and support your customers seek in a way that teaches them, they will be able to solve their problems without the help of reps. Additionally, they’ll learn how to consistently mitigate their challenges on their own time and in turn, you’ll avoid managing a large team of service and support reps that you need to hire and pay.
- Drive traffic to your website.
Whether you have a self-service portal, help center web page, or both, your business’s web-based self-service will be connected to your website. That means, when someone wants to access your self-service, you gain traffic on your website. This increases the chances of them learning about your products, buying the latest version of your service, contributing to your customer-based community, clicking your CTAs, and following links to your social media sites.
- Empower and educate your customers.
Empowering and educating your customers will naturally happen when you provide them with web-based self-service this is because you’re allowing them to find the answers and support they need, on their time, without having to speak to a rep. By doing so, you show your customers that you’re their advocates, which helps you build strong relationships and a sense of trust between your brand and customers.
- Allow for account personalization.
Customers can personalize their account settings in their portals via your website (if you offer self-service portals to customers). Whether it’s their account details, payment method, or overall plan, this information is customizable and viewable within their self-service portal. And depending on the type of self-service portal you offer customers, it might even welcome each customer by their first name when they login to their account.
Account personalization helps self-service systems understand how they can best help specific individuals based on their preferences. For example, a portal may pull up a customer’s previously viewed, or most frequently viewed, resources upon login for quick access to relevant support materials.
Now you might be thinking, “This sounds great, but how do I actually implement web-based self-service for my customers?”. We’ll review the answer to that next.