COVID-19 brought a surge in consumers buying online. A Google study showed that “almost 75% of U.S. shoppers said they will shop online more for the holidays than they did in previous seasons.” Overall Ecommerce grew 31.85% from Q1 to Q2 of 2020 with a surge of brick and mortar stores moving online” Gorgias ticket volume data shows for COVID show there was about a 100% increase in tickets from March 16th – April 17th.
In order to gauge how much bigger Q4 will be compared to last year, major customer support platform Gorgias analyzed how much higher June and July are this year compared to last year, and factored that growth rate into Q4 guidance.
According to this analysis, planning for 3x to 5x what you would have normally forecasted for Q4 2020 is a reasonable expectation. In 2019 there was an 80% increase in support requests over the holiday shopping. Therefore, you should plan for 5.4x to 9x the number of support requests that you saw before COVID hit this year.
Here’s 5 Ways You Can Optimize Customer Support For Black Friday & Cyber Monday:
- Respond quickly to incoming tickets, even if you can’t handle it right away. Let the customer know you’ve gotten their request and are looking after it.
- Automation. Find a Helpdesk that can resolve repetitive questions so that support agents can focus on complex issues.
- Get your macros organized and ready to answer the most common questions with relevant information (tracking link, delivery status, return policy, etc).
- Personalized responses. Let your customers know there’s a human touch at the other end. They want to feel that they’re being looked after by a real person.
- Have a strong operating system that can scale with business growth. The influx of consumers coming to your store is exciting, detrimental without an operating system that scales seamlessly.
Invest in Efficiency Tools
When it comes to customer service, try to maximize the use of your current staff as opposed to hiring seasonal support. With an 80% increase in support requests, it’s natural to think that hiring seasonal is the answer to this. However, providing your team with efficient tools empowers them and makes their lives easier as they are able to manage more with automation and macros.