Customer service is one of the main drivers of a business, particularly for managed service providers. Poor customer experiences can leave negative impacts. For example, U.S. companies lose more than $62 billion a year due to poor service. But on the flip side, a 5% rise in customer retention can result in a 25% to 95% increase in profit.
To ensure your customer service keeps clients happy and drives retention, you can employ several strategies, like hiring strong team members, creating customer loyalty and referral programs, or implementing effective feedback loops. However, one thing that can support customer service efforts, especially for MSPs, is a client portal.
Client portal software provides a platform where customers can submit service requests. MSPs rely on client portals to manage their service tickets and deliver customer support. However, some client portals may lack the right features and could even undermine rather than help your customer service efforts. Read on to learn how to find the right client portal software, and what to avoid.
The Wrong Client Portal: How It Can Wreak Havoc
If you don’t have client portal software, or if you have an insufficient portal, you may inadvertently frustrate customers or cause slower resolution times. For example, say your client portal interface is confusing or clunky. This might make it a bit more challenging to submit support tickets, detracting from the customer experience. Similarly, if your clients can’t easily track their tickets within the client portal, they might grow anxious or frustrated.
The wrong portal can also negatively affect your customer support team. If your solution lacks IT automation, your team will likely solve tickets more slowly than if they had automated functionality. Automation moves tickets forward in the queue so your support staff can focus on solving problems faster. Without it, your technicians may struggle to meet their KPIs and customer standards.
If your client portal doesn’t include the right features, it may be hindering your customer service efforts, which could lead to higher logo churn and possibly lower revenue.
Your Client Portal Features Checklist: What Makes a Worthwhile Solution
To ensure your client portal is up to par, we’ve compiled a checklist covering the essential features that your portal should have to create the best CX experience possible.
- IT Automation: Your support technicians must be able to focus on solving customer problems instead of spending time on predictable, repeatable tasks. If your client portal provides IT automation, it will help by triggering ticket workflows, automating approvals, and prioritizing sensitive or VIP tickets to the front of the queue.
- Self-Support Options: The modern customer will often try to find their own answers to a problem before submitting a formal service request. According to Microsoft, 66% of customer service interactions worldwide start with self-service rather than with an agent. With this in mind, be sure to select a client portal that comes with self-support features, like a knowledge base or self-service videos.
- Custom Client Portal: To give your portal interface a personalized look and feel, consider a solution that allows you to customize the portal in a way that is more relevant to your business and clients.
- Reporting & Analytics: A client portal with reporting capability will shed light on your customer experience by providing actionable data points like portal usage, service analytics, and activity.
- Accessible Communication: Get your clients and technicians in touch quickly by providing simple communication options. The right client portal software will offer live chat, automatic email status updates, and in-app broadcasting.
Client Portal Technology is Worth the Investment for MSPs
MSPs must ensure their clients are satisfied or risk high churn. Advanced client portal technology is the key to faster resolution times, quick communication, and happier customers. When you create positive customer service experiences, you will build a loyal base that will stay with you longer and boost your revenue retention.
Ready for an advanced client portal? Check out DeskDirector to see how it can transform your CX.