On May 20th, RightNow Technologies announced the release of RightNow Mobile, providing a new on-the-go way for companies to engage with consumers via any mobile device. Part of the RightNow CX May 2010, RightNow Mobile allows customers to receive interactive support through smartphones, tablets, GPS systems, and game consoles using three different techniques: web self-service, web chat, and guided assistance.
Web self-service allows consumers to search for answers for any inquiry, review related answers, and send emails from their mobile device while web chat provides live assistance, in which the consumer engages with an agent over a simple, easy to navigate chat interface. Guided assistance differs in that the consumer is provided a series of question branches which helps solve problems in a more question and answer format.
David Vap, Chief Solutions Officer of RightNow, addressed the pressing need for companies to go mobile when he said, "If you are able to connect from anywhere, customer loyalty will be far superior to anything seen in the past...Mobile experience is a very important addition to product set."
Current users of the new RightNow Mobile include Aircell, Ovum, CBS Interactive, Match.com, and MySpace. Michele Watson, VP of Global Customer Care at Match.com, noted that, as Match.com reaches its 15th anniversary, customers are seeking additional methods to interact with singles.
"RightNow provides a solution that helps highly engaged mobile customers get support directly from their device to enhance their experience," Watson told the audience. "This is critical since mobile devices are one of the fastest growing channels and Match.com has developed mobile applications for Android, BlackBerry, iPhone, iPod Touch, and Palm Pre/Pixi smartphones. With more than 20,000 singles registering on Match.com every day, delivering an exceptional customer experience no matter how a customer chooses to contact us is very important."
Daniel Hong, Lead Analyst for Customer Interactions at Ovum, predicts smartphones to be the "next frontier in customer service interaction." Hong attests that unlike other communications, RightNow Mobile is "up front and center" and envisions the smartphone as critical in customer service, whether in the medium of email, chat, text, or video. Inbound call volume for call centers is only increasing, and RightNow estimates that the majority of incoming calls will be from smartphones; RightNow predicts three in five cell phones will be smartphones by 2014.
Hong asserts that customers are much more connected than they used to be, which ultimately means "a hell of a lot more transactions with customers." Although RightNow Mobile seeks to broaden customer communication, Hong maintains that the same level of customer service must be maintained in all communication routes for RightNow Mobile to be effective.
A demographic for RightNow Mobile has yet to be determined as Hong says mobile strategies will differ per company. "The objective," he said, "is to bring awareness to the mobile customer experience."