With intense competition threatening to lure customers away to rivals and buyers becoming well informed about service and products, companies are resorting to numerous measures to satisfy the customers. This is true for literally any company- belonging to any segment. Simply offering lucrative promotions and spending big amounts on online marketing tactics do not cut the ice anymore. It is imperative that the customers get satisfied with the service quality. That explains why more companies are focusing on improving customer support level. This can be done in many ways including outsourcing support operations to skilled third-party vendors or by deploying advanced and feature-rich helpdesk software. With automation becoming more popular and commonplace in business operations, using suitable helpdesk application make sense.
Nuances of helpdesk software
As it is, helpdesk software is used to automate a major part of customers support operations for businesses. It eases processes like lodging grievances online, seeking self-service and connecting the customers with suitable support agents etc. Using such app helps a company save time, enhance workflow efficiency and cut down operational costs to an extent. With time, customers are relying more on helpdesk software to resolve their issues. So, your company needs to have robust software for running support operations in place. It can be standalone licensed software or cloud-based SaaS.
Importance of helpdesk integration
While deploying feature-laden helpdesk software in your company can prove to be beneficial – it is also important you buy the right application. Ideally, such software should have tight integration with other software services used by the company. Excellent compatibility and helpdesk integrations will ease workflow and boost efficiency.
Listed below are the top integrations to look in helpdesk applications:
- Cloud integration- While a section of helpdesk applications are cloud-based, you can still find a few that are traditional license type. If your company relies on cloud-based services for security or database operations, the helpdesk application should have integration with those. This is something you need to check before buying the software.
- Email integration- Regardless of arrival and growing popularity of newer web technologies, the utility of email in business operations can never be undermined! While younger generation customers are more fond of using live chat apps, a section of customers still prefers the old-fashioned way of using mail for sending queries and grievances. The software interface should have a place for accessing emails. Ideally, helpdesk integrations with email services like Outlook and Gmail should be boon for the users.
- Phone integration-Phone based customer support is not new but its popularity has not waned over the years. The good thing is you need no longer rely exclusively on typical hardware-based telephony setup to offer phone-based support to your company customers! The advanced VoIP apps have made software and cloud-based calling breeze for the users. The Helpdesk app you buy should offer tight integration with such software and cloud-based calling apps. This makes things easier for both the support agents and the customers. However, based on service provider and type of plan selected- calls can be limited.
- Calendar integration- It is important that helpdesk application chosen by you has integration with scheduling apps and calendar. This will help in setting reminders and stick to timeline for task accomplishment easier for the support agents. Ideally, the app should be compatible with scheduling apps like Google Calendar and Outlook Calendar.
- Social Media Integration- There is hardly any need to elaborate on the importance of using social media services for any business nowadays. Almost all companies have a presence on popular social media sites and they use those platforms to endorse their services and products. So, the helpdesk tool should have tight integration with widely used social media platforms like Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. YouTube cannot be overlooked as well. By integrating such platforms in helpdesk, it becomes easier for your support agents can check out feeds and updates in the brand’s social media profiles. The customers can also connect with the company for support directly through the social media platforms.
- Database integration- For any company, maintaining and updating a customer database is of utmost importance these days. This database is used to store details of existing customers. From time to time, details of new customers are also added to this database. When customer information is changed, the changes get reflected in the database as well. Integration of helpdesk software with the CRM database is important. When the software is linked with CRM database of your company, support agents can identify when existing customers call or contact through live chat. They can also access saved customer records in a jiffy. This helps in saving time and enhancing the relationship with loyal customers eventually.
- Live chat integration- With time, an increasing number of brands are deploying live chat in their websites. This helps the companies offer customer support in a more flexible way. Its usage helps simplify support activities, helps save time, eases troubleshooting and brings many other benefits in the long run. So, the helpdesk software should have integration with live chat tool.
Apart from these integrations, you should check the application for some other compatibility issues. For example, the software should be compatible with the operating system used in your company. If your setup is Mac OS based, the software should support it. Similarly, if the software is browser-based, support for top third-party browsers should be there. Support for mobile web browser will definitely be desirable.
Finding the best helpdesk application
There is hardly any helpdesk software that can be called perfect. With time, new applications and newer versions of the existing software will arrive in the horizon. However, you should preferably buy a helpdesk application that has robust integration with existing software setup and services used by the company. Besides, you should assess the software by using certain parameters. These are:
- Ease of setup and learning- The helpdesk app should be easy to setup and learning curve should be minimal as well. This will help the employees master the software in less time. Usually, software sellers offer printed and online documentation for setup.
- Customization capabilities- The online ticketing software should have decent Customization features. Your support staffs may not need all features and some existing features may need to be modified. The software should have such flexibility inbuilt.
- Task automation- The software should have extensive automation capabilities. This helps the customer support teams schedule important things and save plenty of time. The application should have filters and conditions to set reminders and task automation.
- Good support- The helpdesk software seller should offer solid, 24×7 support. This will ensure your customer support system does not remain down when any snag hits it.
- Self-service features- A number of customers nowadays prefer resolving minor product issues without requiring manual help. They want the presence of self-support services in helpdesk portal of companies they buy services and products from. So, the helpdesk app you buy for your company should have embedded self-service features. The UI should support Links to FAQ and relevant resources for the customers. It should have an intuitive UI so that the customers face no hassles in resolving such issues.