How to handle customer support at peak moments
Customer support requires different care throughout the year. Peaks are inevitable, but how do you handle them without getting overwhelmed?
03 January
5 min read
Cocoroco customer support agent

Whether the holidays are coming or are months away, customer spikes are inevitable. They’re why you see Christmas gifts in stores in September and BBQs in February. It’s never too early to start preparing.

Holidays are a crucial time of year for brands. They can win big, deliver discounts, and earn customers from both. But more business also creates a higher demand for customer support.

Brands have crumbled, and agents have fallen plenty over the years. Thousands of people buying at once is intense: they’ll demand answers and solutions. If they don’t receive them, they might leave a scathing review, or never buy from you again.

But some brands have made the most out of peaks by ramping up their customer support response. They recognize the demands and respond accordingly, scaling their teams.

But how?

Where do you begin?

And how can you make sure you don’t sink?

How to handle peaks like a pro

Nobody was prepared for 2020, but we can prepare for those ahead. Handling peaks comes down to preparation, prediction, and careful planning. So, we thought, why not share some of our top tips on gearing up your customer support?

Outsource

Some companies double their customer support staff for the holidays, but hiring temporary agents costs far more than outsourcing. Furthermore, you might not get the best agents for the job at hand. Staffing up doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive.

Outsource your customer support.

Outsourcing means you can onboard more agents faster, giving you more people and less pressure.

Plan ahead

Seasonal customers have less patience. Things like getting a smart TV that doesn’t work right away can be frustrating. For big holidays, like Christmas or Black Friday, you need a concrete action plan.

For personalized support, you and your support team need an idea of what’s coming. They also need to know how to respond in ways customers appreciate. In predicting where things may come from, you’ll see results faster.

Provide your team with a knowledge base or FAQ.

Prepare them by ensuring they know the kind of questions they’ll be fielding. Then, provide the means to field them. With a solid plan, you’ll boost your response times and customer satisfaction.

Omnichannel support

Multichannel support is a solution for which we should be thankful. In providing customer support across different communication channels, you can cater to more customers. The more channels you cover, the easier it is for them to get the answers they need.

Provide support across multiple channels.

Some people still don’t have the internet. Others don’t have phones or prefer typing. It all depends on the individual. Providing web chat, email, social media, calls, and FAQs leave the choice in their hands as to how they go about finding fixes. 

And who doesn’t love choice?

What if you didn’t plan or can’t find the right people?

Peak planning is huge and should be one of the first things most ecommerce-related companies think of doing. But often, it’s impossible to find qualified customer service agents locally. Even if you plan, if they aren’t there now, they won’t be next year either.

To avoid this, your best bet is to widen your outsourcing strategy. And the best way to do that is to take it remote. 

How remote customer support teams can solve your problems

The internet is helping combat the war for talent for plenty of reasons. One of the biggest is access to previously untapped talent across the world. Remote working opens the doors to everyone, regardless of who they are or where they live.

For remote work, all an agent needs is a laptop, internet connection, and a quiet place to work. All you need to do to communicate with them is the same. Although you might be a world apart, you can work together as seamlessly as you would in the “real world”. 

As a business, worldwide customer service talent can help you mediate peak management by down- or upscaling ASAP. You’re privy to help in multiple languages across time zones. Meaning multilingual support for your customers 24/7.

Cocoroco makes hiring remote customer support talent simple, so you’ll never have to worry about scales or peaks again. 

Prepare for peak moments by going remote

Whether Halloween, Christmas, or Black Friday, peak seasons might be short but are intense. No matter your industry, you’ll inevitably be dealing with higher support volumes than usual at those times.

Having more people to answer to can stretch smaller teams to breaking point. But there are ways to make peaks less daunting.

Following even a few of the tips above can help you make money while ensuring your customers have the best experience they can get.

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