Robots May Become Go-To Customer Service Reps


The customer service robot market will be worth $88 million by 2022, according to Tractica. Annual shipments are expected to increase from 2,730 units in 2016 to nearly 4,800 in 2022. The robots will be both humanoid and non-humanoid. However, telepresence robots, chatbots, and stationary customer interactive systems that don’t have moving parts are not included in the count. Nearly half of all customer service robots will be deployed in the Asia Pacific Region; other significant markets will be North America and Europe.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84765.html?rss=1

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Amazon Prime Members to Get 'Special Savings' at Whole Foods

Amazon said Prime ‘will become Whole Foods Market’s customer rewards program’ in the future and that members will get ‘special savings and other in-store benefits.’

The original article can be found here: http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2017/08/25/amazon-prime-members-to-get-special-savings-at-whole-foods.html

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Survey: In-App Customer Support Is a Winner


Consumers want mobile apps with good in-app customer support, suggest results of a survey Helpshift released last week. Radius Global Market Research conducted the online poll of adults in the United States this spring. Among the survey’s findings: Eighty-nine percent of respondents said they would recommend an app if a customer support agent proactively contacted them while they were experiencing problems. On the flip side, 47 percent of respondents said they would delete apps that did not provide good customer support.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84753.html?rss=1

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Fulfilling the Omnichannel Shopping Imperative


The omnichannel approach to customer contact has become a byword in customer service, but retailers need to do more to make it happen, based on a recent study. Researchers tested 57 metrics across desktop, mobile and in-store buying touchpoints to evaluate the end-to-end omnichannel experience at 30 popular and growing retailers. They focused on four major categories: fulfillment and inventory; personalization; pricing consistency; and in-store signage. Here’s the problem: E-commerce absolutely is killing brick-and-mortar stores.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84737.html?rss=1

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Uber driver caught by passenger allegedly receiving sex act from lady friend

Uber has reportedly suspended a driver after a customer claimed the man was engaged in sex acts with a woman during the “dangerous and inappropriate” trip.

The original article can be found here: http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2017/07/25/uber-driver-caught-by-passenger-allegedly-receiving-sex-act-from-lady-friend.html

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SEO, SEM Rule Retailers' Marketing Budgets


Retailers have been focusing on technologies to measure and assess customer response, and have been using the data they produce to drive e-commerce decisions, suggests a study of 136 enterprise retailers. Enterprise retailers with at least $500 million in annual revenues participated in the study. Multichannel enterprise retailers comprised 81 percent of respondents, pure-play online retailers 11 percent, in-store-only retailers 4 percent, and other types of companies the remaining 4 percent.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84691.html?rss=1

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LogMeIn Makes Bold360 Entrance at CRM Party


LogMeIn has unveiled Bold360, a customer engagement platform that evolved from Boldchat — the live website chat software it acquired five years ago. Bold360 has an intuitive interface that consolidates data from different systems to present a unified view of customer interactions. Among its features are easy integration of Salesforce and Zendesk data; omnichannel support, including live chat, Facebook Messenger and email; and intelligent automation, which lets agents respond to commonly asked questions and create, curate and manage answers.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84599.html?rss=1

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Uber Wants Fleeing Customers to Know It's Hurting


Uber has been responding to recent requests to delete customer accounts with a statement that claims “everyone at Uber is deeply hurting” and “it’s everyone’s number one priority to create change in the coming months and years.” The pop-up statement, which Twitter users began circulating on Wednesday, appears to be Uber’s latest effort to stem the flow of customers from the company, which has come under fire for ignoring sexual harassment complaints detailed in a blog post published by a former engineer last weekend.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84324.html?rss=1

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Audio engineering is making call center robots more 'human' and less annoying

There’s more to it than smarter A.I.

Filler sound can make customer support computers seem friendlier and more helpful.

The original article can be found here: http://www.popsci.com/audio-engineering-is-making-call-center-robots-more-human?dom=rss-default&src=syn

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Calling Facebook Customer Service? Beware of Fraudsters


Googling for a Facebook customer support phone number may connect users with fraudsters. A fraudulent number reportedly appeared not only as top result in a Google search, but also as a featured snippet — that is, highlighted in a box at the top of the search results. An investigator who called the number, posing as a Facebook customer who had been locked out of his account, was instructed to purchase an iTunes card and then call back with the card number and security code. He then would receive a password to unlock his account.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84276.html?rss=1

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Banking Customer Satisfaction Barometer Inches Up


Customer satisfaction with banking institutions improved last year, based on the annual Bank Satisfaction Barometer CFI Group released Thursday. Customers were more likely to remain bank loyal to their bank and even recommend it to others, according to the annual survey of bank customers across the United States. Banks improved their standing with customers and maintained stronger relationships, with the Bank Satisfaction Barometer reaching a four-year-high of 82, up three points from 79 in 2015.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84260.html?rss=1

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'Professional authenticators' will rid its site of fake goods, eBay says

In an effort to maintain customer trust and keep brands and sellers onside, eBay is stepping up efforts to rid its site of fake goods. However, the system, which involves the use of so-called “professional authenticators,” comes at a cost.

The original article can be found here: http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2017/01/13/professional-authenticators-will-rid-its-site-fake-goods-ebay-says.html

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Customer Service Takes a Turn


It’s widely understood that new customer service channels such as social, email, knowledge bases and the like have left the service agent with harder problems to solve. Those channels are here to stay, because when they work well, they solve problems for pennies. It can cost many dollars to resolve an issue through the efforts of conventional agents. So there’s a decided bias for self-service where possible. However, we need to ensure that there are graceful transitions from the channels to agents, or we risk a backlash.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84202.html?rss=1

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Netflix Offers Offline Option at Long Last


Giving in to years of customer pressure, Netflix on Wednesday announced that it was making a limited number of television shows and movies available for viewing offline without a live connection to the Internet. Customers have been asking for a way to view content on airplanes or other locations where Internet service might be unavailable or expensive, noted Eddy Wu, director of product innovation at Netflix. Among the shows already available for download are Orange is the New Black, Narcos and The Crown.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84127.html?rss=1

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Amazon Cracks Down on Review Freebies


In a bid to help bolster trust in its customer ratings, Amazon on Monday announced that it no longer would allow most incentivized reviews — that is, reviews written in exchange for receiving products free or at a discount. Such reviews comprise only a small percentage of the tens of millions of reviews of products sold on the site, maintained Amazon Vice President of Customer Experience Chee Chew. The company recently introduced a machine learning algorithm that gives more weight to newer, more helpful reviews, he noted.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/83962.html?rss=1

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The Growing Customer Trust Gap


Like most of you, I’m a bank customer — and I expect that like me, most of you are getting sick and tired of all the stories about how banks abuse customers. Recent national stories about bad behavior in the banking industry, as well as my own personal experiences, have shown that banks often do not care about their customers. It’s just the opposite: Banks seem to be trying to squeeze every dime out of every customer. Remember the stories about how banks used to time the posting of checks and withdrawals to charge more in service fees?

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/83936.html?rss=1

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Oracle's Earnings Call


Oracle is flying high as it goes into its annual Oracle OpenWorld customer conference, based on the news from its earnings call on Thursday. It’s clear that the company has succeeded in pivoting from on-premises to cloud software offerings. The revenue acceleration from cloud products and services suggests that Oracle will derive an increasing share of its future revenues from cloud solutions. The quarter’s $816 million in combined revenue from cloud, SaaS and PaaS was up 82 percent from the prior year, noted Co-CEO Safra Catz.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/83904.html?rss=1

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The 4 Fundamental Attributes of Customer Loyalty, Part 1


As I see it, there are four basic capabilities, or attributes, needed to build better customer loyalty. I learned about them from two McKinsey researchers. Those attributes, according to David C. Edelman and Marc Singer — and I agree — are the following: automation, proactive personalization, contextual interaction and journey mapping. What strikes me immediately is that only two of them are purely or largely technological — No. 1 and No. 4 — while the others are organized as human-mediated processes.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/83653.html?rss=1

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The Marginal Customer


I start a lot of client engagements with a simple question: Who’s the customer? It’s amazing the answers that I get. Some people are really quite good. They know the customer’s demographic and business or personal needs, and they focus on those things. Others don’t even grasp the difference between a customer and a consumer. You might expect this if you are working in the business-to-consumer rather than business-to-business space. Working with businesses gives an automatic understanding that there are multiple influences.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/83592.html?rss=1

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