Almost half of utility customers can’t find the information they need on their utility’s website—forcing them to call, email, or visit the utility’s office instead.

(J.D. Power, 2021 Utility Digital Experience Study)

As an industry, utilities lag behind others in website satisfaction. But that can easily change. In most cases, utilities do not need to develop a whole new website to start creating digital “self-service” opportunities for their customers.

What is self-service?

Self-service means enabling customers to find answers to their questions without having to interact with a utility representative. And while office visits and calls may not be all bad, enabling customers to get what they need digitally can bring big benefits through cost reductions, increased speed of service, improved customer satisfaction, and greater access to important information.

Plus, self-service is what customers want. As of 2021, 40 percent of consumers prefer self-service over human contact. And 73 percent of customers prefer to use a company’s website, instead of other forms of support.

How can you allow for self-service opportunities on your website?

  • Compile your FAQ’s:

    You probably already know the main reasons customers tend to call or visit your office. Is it to make a payment? Ask a question? Respond to the unexpected (like a service disruption)? Express concern? Or get information? By predicting what your customers want to know, you can help create resources for them to serve themselves.

  • Present your Priorities:

    In addition to thinking about what your customers frequently ask, you may also consider what messages or announcements you think are most important for your customers to see. Websites can be a perfect hub for utility communications, calendars, and critical links.

  • Make sure that important information is easy to find:

    If your customers can’t find what they need, they will keep calling instead. The Yoppify website plugin can allow you to publish and edit self-service resources directly to your page—without knowing a single line of code. Learn more.

Benefits of a “Self-Service” Approach:

  1. Improved Customer Service and Satisfaction: Your website operates 24/7 letting customers receive prompt answers and service regardless of whether or not you are in the office.

  2. Reduced Time and Cost: Self-service allows you to provide online support to your customers without requiring any interaction with a representative from your company.

Published On: August 5th, 2021 / Categories: Communication Strategy, Water /

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