Visiting online furniture company websites these days is like visiting a futuristic world. Robots, virtual assistants and technology is taking over more and more of the customer service jobs once manned by human beings. The reason for this is because furniture companies are attempting to save money on that bottom line. What they do not understand is that they are actually costing their furniture company profits rather than saving them.
It is not entirely clear where the initial idea to use a sofa bed computer for customer service began. Clearly, the vast majority of customers do not like the idea in the least. In spite of this, furniture companies and companies at large have found a way to implement them to the point that they are considered the norm. Think about it… how often do you call a business and get something other than a computer? More times then not, you will get a computer asking you to push any number of buttons for certain departments.
Some online furniture companies are taking this concept and pushing it even further. They are using computers and technology to allow for what is called “virtual assistants” to help you shop and find the answers to your customer service questions. These technological advances may on the surface seem like a natural progression of technology and in some ways they are. The problems arise because they break some cardinal rules of customer service, and seem to do so with little concern for the customer.
Imagine that you have bought a new couch online. It arrives to your home and turns out to be completely fantastic, but is defective in some way that is not discovered until after the delivery is complete. Now imagine that you go onto the website to find a phone number and instead are referred to a “virtual assistant” that tries to guess at what you need. It does not take many times of putting in the information before you begin to feel like the company really does not want to know what your problem is. Being proactive as a furniture company, particularly online, is impossible in this situation. The best furniture companies actually seek out feedback from their customers and constantly try to improve communication. Virtual assistants and computers put a major roadblock between customers and good old fashioned one on one customer service. Why should people have to fight their way through a customer service nightmare like that?
The best online furniture companies have a clear contact number and address. They answer their phone line and gladly provide good, competent service to their customers without making them jump through hoops. After the sale, they continue to make themselves available and the best of them actually make a follow up phone call to show they care and to make sure the customer is happy with the purchase. No computer or virtual assistant can provide that level of service, and it is killing many companies and the customer service standards of the industry. Fortunately, some companies still get the need for person to person customer service.