The internet has inarguably revolutionized the retail industry. Ecommerce now accounts for one in every five retail purchases. There is no surprise there, it offers everything a customer in today’s time expects- it’s speedy and convenient.
The digital era has also opened up many possibilities for business owners. It allows them to reach a global audience at a fraction of the cost compared to traditional methods. Yet, most businesses are struggling to tap into this potential. The reason is the lack of multilingual customer support.
Surprisingly, only 25% of internet users are English speakers. Multi-lingual customer support helps bridge this gap and reach customers who prefer to converse in other languages:
One of the most noticeable results of multi-lingual support is that it helps you reach an audience that does not speak English. This allows your brand to reach a global audience and break any physical barriers to expand your reach. 64% of executives reported that dealings online were halted due t misunderstandings caused by language barriers. That’s billions of dollars lost to the lack of multilingual customer support. Clearly, it helps establish a connection with customers using their language and makes them feel more welcome and comfortable.
It isn’t surprising that 76% of customers said they would prefer a brand that provides information in their native language. But what is surprising is research shows that customers don’t mind paying more for products where information and customer support is available in their preferred language. It helps them connect with the brand and improve the overall customer experience.
Multilingual support helps customers feel more connected to your customer support team and brand. It makes them feel included and shows them that your business prioritizes their needs. Multilingual customer support is one of the most effective ways of demonstrating empathy and hence increases customer engagement.
But 82% businesses still do not offer multilingual customer support strategy. Here are some of the challenges faced by businesses when trying to cater to an audience that speaks multiple languages:
Ecommerce observes seasonal surges around the holidays. It is no secret that this causes fluctuations in customer support queries as well. The biggest problem for ecommerce customer support is the seasonality of the industry. The same applies for multilingual support. The need for it fluctuates significantly with seasons and it may be costly to keep up with this cycle.
Customer support has one of the highest churn rates and it is very difficult to hire and retain the right talent. Not only this, looking for agents with the right customer support skills such as empathy and patience, is already difficult, add to that the pressure of finding agents that speak multiple languages, and you’ve got yourself in a pickle! Hiring and training in these instances will be a very costly and time consuming affair.
Another important issue to consider is ticket volumes. If there are low number of tickets or customers who use another language, how will you justify the cost of hiring an agent just for these instances?
When you are aiming to reach a global audience, language is one of the barriers your customer service team will face. The other is time. When you run global operations, peo[le from different time zones are bound to contact you. Given your team is likely to be located elsewhere, t is a mammoth task to keep up with these messages in real-time and provide customer support in their language at their preferred time.
The short answer? Is a resounding NO.
With the number of technological advancements we are surrounded by, there are effective ways to overcome these barriers. Adapting the right customer service software alone will go a long way in solving each of these issues.
Ecommerce helpdesk like Richpanel offer customer support and help businesses provide customer service in more than 50 different languages. The most popular languages supported by Richpanel are German, Spanish, and Dutch.
The great thing about Richpanel is that it relies heavily on its robust self-service flows to reduce the number of customer queries or tickets. This means each customer has a personalized view, much like the “My Account” section on Amazon which lets them access the knowledge base, take order actions like cancellations and even check their order status.
This minimizes the load on your customer support agents without compromising on the quality of customer service. And given that Richpanel supports multiple languages, this reduces the burden on you for finding agents with command over multiple languages. It will help curb the cost incurred when hiring for such talent and allow you to scale your operations without hiring more agents.
Here are some of the best practices to provide multilingual customer support that will help you drive the profit home:
Do a thorough market research and identify the languages your customers use the most. In order of importance hire talent that can handle queries in these languages or even configure your customer support software that supports these languages.
To extend the business and reach a wider audience, website localization is critical. It helps you build trust with new website visitors and allows you to tap into a new market. A great example of this is- https://shop.ledvance.com/, a multilingual site that supports 5 languages & they have 5 regional subdomains. This helps them improve user engagement and generate trust with customers in different countries.
Hiring bilingual or multilingual support agents can be a mammoth task. With high iteration rates in the customer support industry, positions are very difficult to fill as it is, add to that an entirely new skillset and its a recipe for disaster.
Phone support is no more the primary support channel that customers use. They have switched to Live chat, email and other platforms for convenience. To offer multilingual support on these platforms is much simpler. You can invest in a helpdesk that allows you to provide multilingual support.
Ensure that the helpdesk allows you to integrate different social channels, live chat, email etc that allow you to streamline your customer service while providing support in the customer’s native language.
Self-service is a boon for customers and agents alike. It gives customers the power to find solutions to their problems without contacting an agent. This helps make them find quicker, more convenient solutions. On the other hand, self service helps answer a large chunk of repetitive queries, eliminating such tickets before they reach the agents. It frees up their time.
For a business that is struggling to provide multilingual support due to the cost incurred, providing multilingual self-help is a cost effective solution to this issue. Customers can find answers in that native language without any human intervention. This is a win-win for all parties.
With the right helpdesk software and localization of your website, you can successfully tap into the global and local markets. It helps you reach potential customers who do not speak English or prefer to communicate in their native language. It has a significant impact on your customer engagement and positively impacts your customer satisfaction scores as well.
Looking for a multilingual helpdesk for your business? Book a demo with Richpanel today!