What is asynchronous messaging? Is it worth it and what are the benefits of asynchronous messaging? In this blog topic we will try to answer these questions directly and simply.
It is a well-known fact that to be at top of the game, you must provide quality customer service. Another well-known fact about quality customer service is the hardship of responding to every inquiry and request in a timely manner. This leads to frustration on both sides. Relying only upon live conversations leads to poor quality responds and long waiting lines for an answer. This can be damaging for your company image and for your employees. Too much stress at work can cause major unsatisfaction internally and externally.
Current customer service insight:
Due to the Covid 19 pandemic, the demand for great customer service gained even more importance. Customers were stuck with the usage of fully online services and relied heavily on superb customer service feedback. Since habits are extremely hard to change, people still expect and require excellent, above and beyond customer service.
Requirements of good customer service are answering calls, messages and emails fastly and accurately. However, one of the most important factors is having a personal touch at the same time.
The vital factor in achieving success is time. On the other hand, time is limited and usually resulting in piling up of messages and unanswered calls. All the more reasons to try asynchronous messaging.
What is Asynchronous messaging and what are the benefits?
Firstly, messaging is one of the major components of customer service. Messaging takes place in messaging apps or live chat windows on corporate websites. However, to be efficient, companies should use both variations of messaging: synchronous and asynchronous.
Synchronous messaging, in other words means real-time communication. Examples are when an agent responds to your message via live chat on company’s website. So, this type of messaging requires equal participation from both sides; the website visitor side and the agent side. Synchronous messaging can be a great solution for smaller companies. The reason is because they most likely don’t have as many inquiries and they are still working their way to the top. On the other hand, large companies receive thousands of messages on a daily basis. Making it impossible to answer all of the receiving requests and inquiries in real-time.
Asynchronous messaging can be the answer to those numerous questions and requests that large companies receive. Different communication options allow you to respond to inquiries when you can. Just like replying to an email or a message in your personal life. The biggest problem of synchronous conversations is that you must wait until the agent is available to respond to you. By the time your inquiry comes in line, you most probably won’t be available. So how to fix this problem?
Asynchronous messages allow customers, clients or potential partners to leave a message to the agent without waiting in a line for a response. This way of messaging is beneficial for agents because they can manage their time and tasks more effectively. It allows agents to manage their responsibilities according to the company schedule. Asynchronous messages allow responding to messages in a more personal manner, rather than using template messages for everyone. This way of messaging brings more value to your customer service and it makes your customers feel more appreciated.
There are multiple platforms that companies can use to ensure asynchronous conversations run smoothly. One example is Zendesk. Zendesk is probably the most known platform because it is the easiest to use. Because of Covid 19 pandemic and businesses mostly switching to online world, agents need to reply to more tickets than usual. Nevertheless, customers still expect the conversations and customer service support to be at that exact level. Zendesk or any other similar platform allows the collection of large sums of requests and multiple agents are responsible to answer. In this way, each agent has its own tickets and customer requests to handle.
Benefits of using Asynchronous messaging:
The first and the most obvious benefit is that customers can message agents at any time, 24/7. After customers send the message, the first available agent will reply within the 24 hours period. The system can be adjusted so that the customer gets an immediate message informing him/her of the approximate timeline of the reply. Meaning, customers do not need to start a new conversation all over again if the 24 hours pass. Or on the other hand if the problem isn’t resolved. They simply continue their conversation with the same agent until they solve the problem. This approach is also useful if the customer feels that the agent needs additional information about the issue later.
The second benefit is better time management. Since customers do not need to wait for the first available agent to reply, they can immediately start a conversation and explain their problem. The great thing about asynchronous messaging is that once the message is sent, customers do not have to keep the chat open until they get a reply. The agent will respond to the message in the 24-hour period. Afterwards, the message is directed to the customer so the conversation can be continued. Many people are already used to asynchronous messaging with tools such as Slack, WhatsApp, Viber and many others. So your customers will gladly accept this form of communication.
Another benefit is that customer service agents aren’t pressured to immediately respond to each inquiry. Before, this problem often led to sloppy answers because of little time to answer to everyone’s questions. In turn, everyone was unsatisfied. On the other hand, asynchronous messaging “buys” time for agents and makes sure they can organize their schedule properly. Also, asynchronous messaging can first direct customers to a virtual agent. This way, they are slowly directed to try to solve the problem on their own if possible. If that isn’t the case, the ticket is directed to a real agent. Platforms like Zendesk allow agents to merge tickets (same problems, different customers) and reply to various customers at the same time. This practice makes their job easier and more efficient.
Since customers are getting more expectations and businesses trying to be more profitable, customer service became a crucial for success. Customers are the ones who bring revenue, so relationships with them are extremely important. Asynchronous messaging can be a useful tool to achieve good customer service. It allows better time management and organization within the company. In addition, your team will become more productive and efficient. Our advice is to invest in these tools because without satisfied customers, no business can achieve its full potential. Embrace the challenges, listen to your customers and start with internal changes.