New data on consumer behavior confirms that websites are more important than social media for answering consumers’ questions.
ExactTarget conducted a study during September 2011 looking at the number of questions asked on corporate websites versus social media.
Results of the study indicate that social media channels are not the first place customers go when they want their questions answered.
When customers are online and have a question, they go to your website.
Research shows that less than one percent of customers choose to use Twitter as their first stop in problem resolution.
Commenting on his blog, social media strategist and author Jay Baer says, “In almost every case, the people complaining on Twitter are doing so because your company failed to satisfy them in one or more traditional service channels.”
When it comes to getting their questions answered, customers overwhelmingly prefer to take their questions to the company website versus social media.
The number of questions asked via social media channels account for less than 1/100th of the percent of questions asked via customer facing websites.
The implications for your business are four-fold:
- Put first things first. Make sure you have as much information as possible on your website, including but not limited to, how-to videos and frequently asked questions. Remember your website is a living, breathing part of your company and should be updated regularly including the addition of more frequently asked questions based on topics about which you are receiving calls.
- Get strategic first, tactical second. Commit to being a providing an outstanding customer experience and ensure that all of your employees and your website are in alignment with that strategic direction. Once you have made this commitment, you can identify and evaluate tactics on their ability to provide an outstanding customer experience.
- Get your own handle on the role of social media. Just because social media is not the first place customers go to ask questions doesn’t mean you can ignore it. You still need to monitor the different channels, know where your customers and prospects congregate and monitor what’s being said about your product or service and that of your competitors.
- Be where your customers are. Once you’ve identified the channels where your customer and prospects congregate look for opportunities to participate and provide information of value.
When is the last time you updated the FAQs on your website?