Understand the Customer’s Problem-Solving Process like Intercom

“Set proper expectations; make sure people aren’t expecting one thing and then getting something completely different. Managing that the second they get to the site or write into you is really important for support teams. The root of a good customer experience is giving people options; giving people the ability to do things the way they want to do it”

̶  Ryan Steinberg, Head of Support Operations at Intercom

Customer support is all about connecting with customers and improving the customer experience. By doing so, a company can improve retention and build relationships. Customer support team needs to recognize that the ideal customer experience might look different for every individual. It is crucial that support teams be flexible and deliver solutions in forms that suit the preferences of a customer. Some may choose to browse an FAQ section, while others might decide to write-in to the live chat tool.

Secret #7: Give your customers the power to approach the problem the way they want

As the saying goes, customer is king. Support teams should uphold this as they approach problem-solving with the customer. At Intercom, this saying is taken to a whole new level: the support team sees the value of letting the customer decide how to tackle their problem. This means the support team gives customers “the ability to self-serve, or the ability to talk to a human and dive deeper”, because “respecting individuals, their time, and the way they want to approach a problem” is part of supporting a customer.

Secret #8: Get a holistic picture of where the customer has been and where they currently are in the problem-solving process

“Knowing the context of previous interactions and allowing that to inform how you're going to service or talk with someone in the particular interaction that’s about to happen”

― Ryan Steinberg, Head of Support Operations at Intercom

Intercom, the support team recognizes that the journey to solving a customer’s problem isn’t always a simple, obstacle-free path. It’s important to take the time to examine where the customer has been and gather information about what occurred prior to your interaction with them. By getting some perspective, support teams can gain a better idea of how to handle the issue.  Head of Support Operations at Intercom, Ryan Steinberg, understands that and sees creating an experience that emulates in-person interaction as the future of customer support. In terms of customer experience, this can be achieved by “getting a holistic picture of where they’re at, where they’ve been, and the experience they’ve had in the past”.

Chapters in this eBook