The difference between self-service success and case deflection.

Why is there so much focus among service leaders on improving self-service success? The answer is twofold. First, because customers are demanding it, and their satisfaction now lies in companies’ ability to help them easily answer their questions on their own. Secondly, the ROI of self-service success is very compelling. More cases solved online means less calls into the call center. But what do we consider as self-service success?

Often times, there is some confusion differentiating self-service success versus case deflection. Self-service success is the rate that customers complete their desired transaction and/or find useful information in the self-service portal. Self-service success does not, however, imply that the customers’ need for live assistance was fully eliminated. Case deflection is one of the ways to achieve self-service success. It is the rate that customers are able to find their own answers  to issues that they would have otherwise called support for. Essentially, if self-service resources or content is made available to eliminate the need for live assistance, the case has successfully been deflected.

How case deflection and self-service work together.

If you’re like me, when you need help with a product or service you use, you likely prefer the fastest, most effortless path to getting answers. Not surprisingly, more often than not, the most effortless path is the one that allows you to self-serve; getting the information you’re looking for conveniently and independently. We like when we can help ourselves, on our own time and we’re not alone. 65% prefer web self-service to other channels, which is why offering great self-service has become the single biggest priority for support leaders around the globe.

Great self-service is easy, relevant and smart, and by putting the proper case-deflecting measures in place you can actually track the success of your customers with issues that need to be resolved. When customers are offered proactive insights and are recommended help at precisely the right moment – more cases can be deflected. With a self-service search analytics solution to track these events, organizations can now accurately measure self-service success and case deflection rates.

5 best practices to move the needle on case deflection.

  1. Identify all self-service content across all enterprise sources and channels and unify access to it with intelligent search
  2. Provide prominent access to this unified search on your self-service site, portal, or community – which should become the one-stop hub for your customers to find answers
  3. Leverage search analytics to identify self-service content gaps, spot emerging support issues, and to calculate your Case Deflection Rate
  4. Take advantage of machine learning capabilities to learn from your visitors, continually improve search results and predict relevant content
  5. Proactively recommend helpful content and insight everywhere your customers can create a case, open a support ticket, or engage with your contact center

Learn more.

Self-service programs are a continuous process, not a project with a beginning and an end. To learn more about key practices on measuring self-service success and case deflection, we encourage you to attend this upcoming virtual summit from the TSIA. Coveo’s VP of Customer Success, Jennifer MacIntosh, will be co-hosting this 4 hour interactive session, that explores the importance of the top and bottom line financial performance for support and why these metrics are essential to internal and external conversations relative to satisfaction and loyalty.


Self-Service Success


About Samantha Demers

Samantha Demers is Coveo’s Senior Content Editor, based in Montreal, Quebec. She is a passionate marketing and communications professional who has built her career in the tech industry by helping companies bring their brands to life and remain relevant in their field. Her motto; “engage like a consumer, not like a marketer” helps Coveo connect with its audience throughout their Intelligent Insights journey.

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