Formal vs. Casual: Which Style Is Best for Customer Service?

How to Win Over B2B Customers and Build Trust

Interactions with business-to-business (B2B) customers are usually best suited for formal language. The goals are to increase trust and solve problems for current or potential clients while maintaining high standards.

A formal tone supports those aims and allows customer service experts to nimbly navigate corporate structures. Agents may engage with several decision-makers to guide their choices. Formal language shows a consistency that impresses people from highly structured industries.

Questions about using a formal vs. informal communication style also arise when helping customers with medical or legal issues. Those people frequently reach out when dealing with serious matters. A formal style is typically best for handling them, even when addressing consumers.

An informal style could make people conclude customer service agents don’t recognize the severity of their circumstances. They could also decide getting in touch was a mistake and go elsewhere for help — creating missed opportunities for agents and their employers.

How to Facilitate Better B2C Interactions and Stay On-Brand

Business-to-consumer (B2C) conversations succeed when shoppers connect with entities that address their unmet needs and make things easier or more enjoyable. Adopting a casual style for most B2C interactions works well because it allows agents to come across as highly relatable and well positioned to understand individual situations.

Conversations about lifestyle products or consumer goods often resonate more with shoppers when customer service agents use informal wording. This approach lets service specialists avoid overly stuffy language.

Adopting informal language can also aid customer service specialists who want to excite or inspire. Keeping the interactions casual supports a team’s efforts to convey how products tackle potential buyers’ challenges.

Many B2C companies gain ground in competitive marketplaces by using a humorous tone. An informal style supports such lighthearted approaches when they make sense for the audience or the products being sold.

Formal vs. Casual: Which Style Is Best for Customer Service?

No universal rules define formal vs. informal business communication, although the above examples provide useful starting points. If service teams feel unsure, following customers’ leads by mimicking the styles they use is an excellent practice. The use of emoticons can also help clue someone into the fact the person on the other end prefers informal language.

Employees who interact with customers may have internal documents or their supervisors’ orders to follow as well. Those elements take precedence over broader advice about how best to handle communications.

Learn How to Boost Survey Responses

Decisions about when to use formal vs. informal communication illustrate the evolution of how people engage with brands. The Quiq Conversational Customer Engagement Platform supports today’s business messaging needs by personalizing communications through consumers’ preferred channels. Contact us today or request a demo to learn about the benefits of instant messaging and text messaging in formal and informal settings.

Quiq’s Newest Partner – Snaps Brings End-to-End Sales and Support on Instagram and More

Quiq is thrilled to announce its integration with Snaps, the leading platform for connecting consumers and businesses in messaging. As partners, Quiq and Snaps now offer retailers and eCommerce brands highly intelligent, end-to-end conversations on today’s most popular messaging channels including webchat, SMS, Apple Business Messages, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, WeChat, and more.

Most recently, Quiq and Snaps have updated their integration to deliver hybrid automated and human support for digital retailers on Instagram.

Through Snaps’ integration with Quiq, eCommerce brands can now provide shoppers with 24/7 instantaneous answers to frequently asked questions and personal complex order inquiries with automation or seamlessly connect to a live agent for additional sales or service support.

Agents using Quiq can follow the conversation, take over if desired, and then hand control back to the automated assistant.

Once shoppers request agent support, a transcript of their automated conversation, as well as key user properties like name and email, are passed along to the agent using Quiq’s customer service platform.

Conversational interactions with the live agent will then continue directly within shoppers’ existing chat windows on Instagram.

For online retailers experiencing a surge of customer service inquiries amidst COVID-19 and peak shopping periods, Snaps’ integration with Quiq enables brands to provide faster and more efficient support to shoppers while freeing up agents to focus on more complex support and sales inquiries.

Interested in learning more about Snaps’ partnership with Quiq? Contact us to get more details about our integration and a personalized demonstration of how it works.

How to Use a Messaging Platform to Assist With Holiday Returns

As customers buy up clothes, collectibles, décor, toys, and appliances this holiday, some of these products will inevitably be returned after the season ends. In fact, a survey from 2019 showed that the majority of consumers were likely to return at least some of their holiday gifts. This trend leaves retailers with a massive number of returns, which is why refining the customer return process in preparation for the holidays is essential.

Using messaging platforms for returns is a convenient and economical way to manage more customers and provide fast service. Quiq provides messaging software with seamless integration and chatbot capabilities for retailers looking to streamline communication.

The Benefits of Using a Text Messaging Platform for Returns

Text messaging creates a more personalized customer experience. It also offers a way for agents to keep consumers informed by using a common communication channel. With a texting platform, retailers can:

  • Quickly provide support: Mobile technology allows people to access messages from anywhere at any time. Texting is personal, and it gives retailer representatives the ability to operate at a faster pace. It’s a better option for shoppers who are looking for immediate service.
  • Organize the returns process: With texting platforms, retailers can prioritize messages, create inboxes for separate topics, and monitor incoming inquiries. These capabilities make it easier to organize the returns process according to retail business specifications.
  • Reference order and customer information easily: While talking on the phone or speaking in person can be a hassle for both the consumer and the agent, SMS messaging allows you to access essential information in minutes.

How to Use Bots to Help Automate Holiday Returns

Advanced text messaging platforms allow retailers to improve their return processes with chatbots. Automated systems can now guide customers through the beginning steps of a return, and they can often operate much faster than human agents. Chatbots:

  • Address frequently asked questions: Chatbots generate fast responses to simple questions that a buyer might ask. For example, if someone asks how to make a return, a bot can get them started on the right track.
  • Automate obtaining order information: Automated messaging systems also collect order information, such as names and order numbers, from consumers. This process speeds up data gathering so that agents can focus on the more complex parts of the process.
  • Preview messages: With message previewing capabilities, bots can answer questions more quickly — much faster than a person can. The faster a buyer receives a reliable answer, the more satisfied they will be.
  • Have a past history log of interactions: Bots keep a record of past interactions with consumers, which helps retailers provide a more individualized approach to service. The history log gives retailers quick access to customer information, which simplifies the return process.

Facilitate Holiday Returns With Quiq

Modern technology improves returns processing for retailers in all sectors of the industry. If you’re looking for a way to expedite holiday returns this year, Quiq can provide a comprehensive messaging platform solution. For more information, contact Quiq for a demo.

How to Scale Customer Service to Keep up With Business Growth

Consumers need information, and they need it right away. It’s a retailer’s job to make sure every buyer or lead receives the customer support they need. That’s why it’s important to foster growth with the help of scalable methods and technology.

Scaling your customer support strategy takes time and careful planning. There are several methods that can help reduce the burden on customer service agents and provide shoppers with the answers they need faster.

How to Scale Customer Support to Keep up With Business Growth

As a retail business grows, so does the number of people who need customer service. Responding to each question individually takes time, and this can be a major inconvenience for shoppers who have immediate needs. Scaling customer support ticket volume is a detailed process, and it’s important to understand what to prioritize before you get started. 

Hire More Agents

In some cases, hiring more agents is the best way to respond to the increasing demand for customer support. A greater number of agents helps retailers divide responsibilities more evenly and reduce individual workloads.

While hiring more agents is a less cost-effective way to scale customer service than using some of the technology available today, it can be a smart option for expanding retailers who want to improve customer management.

Prioritize Important Customers

Although every shopper matters, some customers have more urgent needs than others. It’s important for service representatives to take this into account when deciding which inquiries to answer first.

Marking questions by urgency is an effective way to separate and prioritize the buyers who need assistance right away. Those with less urgent questions may be able to wait a little bit longer for answers.

Manage the Workload and Tickets Effectively

If you want to prevent customer service agents from becoming overwhelmed by the number of tickets, it may be time to consider a more effective management strategy. For example, developing specific emails for tickets can keep messages organized for agents.

Assigning tickets to service representatives who specialize in specific topics or separating questions by key phrases can also help simplify the process.

Implement Software

Today’s retailers can enhance their customer support with the help of messaging software. SMS communication software allows for easy integration across multiple channels and creates a more personalized experience for shoppers.

Quiq offers a Conversational Customer Engagement Platform for retailers looking to implement efficient communication technology. Our platform expands your mobile presence and improves customer satisfaction.

Learn and Implement Improvements

One of the best ways to scale customer service is to implement improvements for training, records, and technology. For instance, chatbots from Quiq can speed up customer support by providing individuals with immediate answers.

Keeping organized documentation and developing training programs for agents can also help streamline operations.

Contact Quiq for a Demo Today

You can save time and money this holiday season by organizing the customer service process and integrating the latest software. Quiq offers numerous platforms and messaging solutions to help growing retailers scale their customer support options, so contact us today for a demo. 

Apple Business Chat MSP (Messaging Service Provider): How to Get Started

Today’s smartphones and tablets offer new opportunities for brands to connect with consumers traveling through the buying journey. Customers researching a business on their iPhones or iPads have the option of contacting a business through the messages icon that appears in map and search results. Apple Business Chat facilitates these messaging conversations.

Apple Business Chat software allows customers to use a familiar text messaging interface and receive richer responses compared to in-person interactions. For example, employee representatives can offer to schedule appointments, share product listings, and collect feedback. The ability to complete transactions securely through RCS messaging is another advantage of Apple Business Chat.

To start using Apple Business Chat, businesses must first register with Apple and partner with an approved Messaging Service Provider (MSP).

What is an Apple Business Chat Messaging Service Provider (MSP)?

A Messaging Service Provider (MSP) manages customer message routing between Apple Business Chat and the business. Think of a MSP as an intermediary that allows a customer service team to respond efficiently from their desktops to what customers send from their iOS Messaging apps.

Apple lays out several requirements for messaging platforms if they are to become approved MSP’s. A platform needs to demonstrate it can identify customer intent from messages and queue, prioritize, and route the customer to the right members of a customer support team. The platform must also support asynchronous messaging channels other than Business Chat, and its team must offer resources to help clients become launch-ready for Apple’s rich messaging service.

There are other Apple guidelines to qualify for MSP approval, but perhaps most important is a platform’s ability to manage and monitor multiple channels while collecting customer metrics. Quiq has holistic features that classify interactions and route messages to support agents, integrate with CRM solutions, and organize a complete customer history within the UI.

Why Deploy Apple Business Chat?

Apple Business Chat makes it easy for consumers to initiate a conversation with a company when searching for a business through Maps, Safari, Search or Siri or even in the businesses’ own app. Business Chat allows consumers to ask a question about a product or service, or complete a transaction using Apple Pay. With Apple Business Chat it’s easier to reach a live person and consumers are always in control of whether they share any contact information with a business.

“The things that make text messaging the most popular communication channel with family and friends also make it the preferred medium for customers to engage with companies,” said Mike Myer, CEO and Founder of Quiq. “Adding support for Apple Business Chat allows connected customers to engage with businesses in a way that is personal, frictionless, and easy, using the Messages app on iOS. Companies using Quiq will simply have access to a new messaging channel within the Quiq Messaging platform.”

Today, consumers prefer business messaging over any other form of communication to engage with businesses and a lot of companies have had to sit up and take notice. As mobile browsing and chat interactions continue to grow and overtake traditional channels business messaging, especially through rich communication services like Apple Business Chat has quickly become more than a nice-to-have for companies.

What you need to get started with Apple Business Chat

To get your company started with Apple Business Chat, Apple requires businesses to set up a Business Chat Account, but before they do so, they should follow these steps to ensure a smooth approval process with Apple.

First, your company should outline the business need to support starting a Business Chat Account. This should provide a very clear explanation for why you want to enable Business Chat for your customers as well as outlining a process for how to identify and authenticate customers within Business Chat. If this sounds a little technical, it’s because it is, which is why it is essential (and required) to have an Apple Business Chat Messaging Service Provider (MSP).

There are very specific requirements for the type of account your business will choose to enable with Apple and applications are reviewed carefully. To qualify for a Business Chat Account, you must have an asynchronous messaging platform staffed by live agents during business hours. An Apple Business Chat partner, like Quiq, can help navigate the process and requirements set by Apple to get started with setting up a Business Chat Account.

Quiq was one of the early Messaging Service Provider (MSP) to support Apple Business Chat, which is a new way for users to communicate directly with businesses using the native iOS Messages app on iPhone and iPad.

Once you have addressed the business need, outlined a plan to support inbound Apple Business Chat conversations, and selected an Apple Business Chat CSP, you’re ready to create a Business Chat Account.

As a part of getting your Business Chat Account submitted, your business will want to set up an internal testing account. This gives your business an opportunity to see and test Apple Business Chat internally prior to exposing it to your customers. At this point, you will need to have chosen an Apple Business Chat MSP, in order to proceed with testing. With your internal testing account, you’ll then be able to send and receive messages through your MSP. As an additional resource, Apple has provided a step-by-step guide to Getting Started with Business Chat.

Why Work With Quiq To Implement Apple Business Chat?

Apple recommends that businesses decide which approved MSP will connect their customers to their live agents while waiting for Business Chat Account approval. It’s a good time to get acquainted with Quiq’s capabilities with Apple Business Chat.

Quiq is built around asynchronous messaging, aligning with Apple’s platform requirements, and is an Apple-approved Customer Service Platform. With Quiq, you can seamlessly integrate with your internal system or choice of customer engagement software and offer rich media experiences through text messaging.

Quiq has helped many clients start utilizing the advantages that Apple Business Chat has to offer. Quiq representatives get to know each client’s goals, and a Quiq implementation specialist guides each client through the Business Chat registration process.

Quiq also provides the support clients need to branch out into other SMS, web, and social messaging channels. Our Conversational Customer Engagement Platform supports many customers’ preferred messaging channels. With Quiq, you can begin providing an enhanced customer experience with Apple Business Chat or another business messaging channel and manage cross-platform conversations easily.

Ready to get started?

Quiq makes it easy for customers to contact a business via Messaging, the preferred channel already in use with friends and family. In return, companies get a digital engagement platform to communicate with customers. Try it out yourself today with a free demo!