Increase customer loyalty: Six steps broadband providers can take

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Here’s the truth: most customers hate their broadband provider. If you work for a broadband company, it can be startling to learn that customers only prefer you over a trip to the gas station. Especially when you consider just how much you don’t like pulling over every week to stand in a place that quite literally stinks.

However, all hope isn’t lost. There are several steps you can take to rise above gas stations (and other places, too). Below, we go over a few ways your broadband company can increase customer loyalty.

Customer retention challenges for broadband companies

Broadband companies face several challenges when it comes to increasing customer loyalty. First, there are more service providers than ever, making the Internet sector very competitive. It also means that it’s easier than ever for customers to switch if they’re unhappy with the quality of service from your company. 

This, combined with increasing customer rage, can pose a real challenge for maintaining customer loyalty. According to the National Customer Rage survey, customers are angrier than ever, with 43% reporting that they’ve yelled at an agent. 

Additionally, many customers say companies are letting them down with several notable gaps between what customers want and what they receive. For example, many customers say their service providers don’t treat them with dignity and respect or use easy-to-understand language when explaining a service problem.

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How broadband companies can increase customer loyalty

Despite the challenges listed above, all hope isn’t lost when it comes to customer retention. Below are a few ways your broadband business can reduce churn and increase customer loyalty. 

1. Improve the self-serve onboarding process

More companies are turning to low-cost digital onboarding methods for enrolling new customers. Self-serve onboarding can have a powerful impact on digital adoption rates, customer satisfaction, and brand loyalty, so it’s essential to get it right. 

Yet, many broadband companies aren’t creating onboarding programs that set customers up for success. Nine out of 10 customers believe companies need to improve onboarding. Additionally, a lengthy onboarding process can lead to customer abandonment. Research by Visa found that 70% of customers will discontinue the onboarding process if it takes longer than 20 minutes.

To ensure customers successfully onboard with your broadband company, keep the process as short and simple as possible. Consider using tools like video and interactive tutorials to make it easy for customers to navigate any installations or set up and start using your products and services. Doing so sets the right tone for a positive long-term customer relationship. 

2. Communicate clearly and effectively with customers

The old saying “communication is key” might sound cliche, but it’s a vital part of a strong customer retention strategy. Broadband companies looking to increase customer loyalty should focus on improving proactive communication, which means anticipating problems and communicating with customers before issues arise. 

For example, if your company has scheduled maintenance for a particular time, let customers know beforehand that certain services, apps or their internet connection will be unavailable. Proactively communicating with customers can have a powerful impact on customer loyalty. Research shows that two-thirds of customers will view a brand more favorably if the company implements proactive communication strategies. 

Additionally, encourage agents to use conversational language when interacting with customers. Your customers don’t usually have the technical know-how to understand industry jargon. When guiding customers through troubleshooting, encourage them to use simple, straightforward language. 

3. Create a strong onboarding program for contact center agents

​​A strong agent onboarding program is vital for providing effective customer service. 96% of customers leave after one bad customer service interaction, so you must ensure your onboarding program sets agents up for success from day one. 

To create an effective onboarding program, start by setting clear goals for new contact center agents. When you create an onboarding program with clearly defined goals, your employees are 58% more likely to remain with your company. You may want to develop a 30-60-90-day plan to help agents stay on track. 

Additionally, consider developing a mentorship program that pairs new agents with more experienced ones. Mentorship helps improve agent performance and employee retention. One study found that mentorship programs can increase employee retention by as much as 50%. 

Investing in a high-quality onboarding program can help your broadband business improve its net promoter score (NPS) and first-call resolution rates. However, it’s also crucial for improving employee engagement, which is vital to creating a better customer experience and improving key customer service metrics. 

4. Equip agents with the right tools for successful service interactions

Companies looking to improve agent training should ensure that all onboarding materials are up-to-date. However, manually updating materials like physical device libraries or instruction manuals can be both time-consuming and expensive. Broadband businesses looking for more cost-effective alternatives may want to consider technology such as virtualization or virtualized tech support

With virtualization, agents can use digital simulations that mimic all the functionality of physical devices. However, unlike physical devices, these virtual ones update dynamically, ensuring agents have the most accurate information possible to assist customers. Contact center agents can also benefit from live video support technology, helping them to provide faster and more effective tech support to customers.

5. Offer omnichannel customer support

Omnichannel customer service is no longer a nice-to-have but a must-have for broadband companies. 90% of customers expect your company to provide a seamless omnichannel support experience. 

Unlike multichannel support, which is often siloed and disorganized, omnichannel support empowers agents to guide customers through all their various service interactions using a single platform.

For example, if a customer calls your contact center about issues with their home internet setup, your agent could quickly send an interactive tutorial via SMS or email. Omnichannel support also empowers customers by ensuring they can access those same tutorials via customer self-service

Omnichannel support provides your business with one customer service platform for everyone, customers and agents. With omnichannel support, customers can access customer service when and how they want, while agents can find the answers they need faster and provide more effective issue resolution for customers. 

6. Harness the power of personalization 

Personalized customer service is a powerful tool for standing out from competitors and improving customer loyalty. Research by McKinsey shows that personalization increases customer satisfaction by 20%. The same study found that companies that personalize customer interactions increase profits by as much as 40%.

So, how can your broadband company create more personalized interactions with customers? Personalization goes beyond just using the customer’s name. Some examples of personalization include providing tech support in the customer’s preferred language or tailoring your tech support to the customer’s specific device. It can even be as simple as directing your agents to use natural conversation skills with customers instead of robotic scripts. 

There are many ways to implement personalized customer service, and it’s a critical strategy for building customer trust and loyalty. 

What steps will you take to improve customer loyalty?

The broadband space is fiercely competitive, making it easier than ever for customers to switch providers. However, there are steps you can take to reduce customer churn and improve customer loyalty. By following the guidance here, your business can proactively increase customer loyalty and differentiate itself from competitors. 

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