Joanne Grantz
October 6, 2015 | Customer Relationship Management (CRM) | Joanne Grantz

The importance of a multichannel customer service approach

The best way for wineries to offer excellent customer experience is to implement a coordinated, multichannel approach.

Wineries that sell wine online can differentiate themselves from competitors by offering excellent customer service experiences. RetailCustomerExperience cited data from LivePerson that illustrated the negative impact of a poor online experience. Specifically, 45 percent of customers stated they will abandon their purchase. Moreover, 78 percent of respondents said they are more likely to be loyal to a company that provides real-time, one-to-one support at critical moments during the customer experience journey.

Additionally, Parature cited research from an Ovum study that revealed 74 percent of consumers now use at least three channels when interacting with an enterprise brand or organization for for customer service issues. The best way for wineries to offer excellent customer experience is to implement a coordinated, multichannel approach.

What is multichannel customer service?
As more consumers shop online and switch quickly from the tasting room to the online wine store, customer service teams must be equipped to handle inquires across a wide variety of channels. Multichannel customer service is customer support that is seamless and accessible across all channels, including social media, email, telephone and live chat. Additionally, a company that has an effective multichannel approach will have sites and properties that are responsive to mobile devices.

One customer, one conversation
The key to executing multichannel customer service is to leverage CRM tools that bridge each step in the customer journey in order to create a seamless experience. There are three qualities of an excellent multichannel customer service strategy:

1. Integration: In today's multichannel world, customers expect seamless experiences. When a customer tweets about an issue with their wine shipment, they should be contacted via phone by someone who is already fully informed of the situation. As customers switch platforms to get the information they need, customer service associates should be equipped to manage these changes.
2. Customer preference: With so many options available, customers expect to use their preferred channels and get the same experience on each. A customer should be able to get the same information about their wine club membership on live chat as they would through a Facebook post.
3. Efficiency: Customers expect their questions to be answered quickly. By integrating teams and communicating effectively, wineries can avoid frustrated customers.

Don't neglect the tasting room
Online and in-store shopping are inextricably linked. Many ecommerce sites allow customers to make purchases online to pick up in-store or return items in-store that were purchased on the Web. Wineries must take this crossover into consideration and provide excellent customer service in the tasting room.


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