Domain Knowledge is a concept long lauded as a fundamental of effective software development. From analysts to developers, the importance of product understanding is stressed as critical to every stage of developing and supporting software.
However, the appreciation of domain knowledge benefits all industries and services. Domain knowledge isn’t unique to software development or development teams, it’s a fundamental understanding of brand, product and method that improves and affects all customer relationships and interactions.
Domain knowledge is about more than knowing the product being supported. It demands a comprehensive understanding of your business:
The first thing your customers will notice when contacting customer support is how well agents know the product. Training, knowledge sharing and generating product experience through encouraging discussion and interaction across your company reinforces understanding of the product line, in turn increasing customers’ satisfaction and confidence.
An in-depth knowledge of what your business does is as important as understanding the product. Without a thorough understanding of what you offer customers cross selling and providing recommendations become impossible. Whether insourced or outsourced, your agents must always know more about your business than your customers. If a customer mentions they are also looking for another service or product you offer, your agent must be able to discuss these clearly and effectively. Effective ongoing training, including in-depth company overviews and service offerings, ensures your agents are extremely well versed in your company, culture and values.
Your customers shop around. They’re often very aware of the best prices and services in your sector. An understanding of the wider industry, and your company’s standing and market position within it, is key to your agents knowing your unique offerings: what you do better than your competitors, how you sell your products and services and what is your perceived brand value.
Leveraging domain knowledge improves the way your customers view and interact with your business. This will allow your agents to more effectively support your target demographics, and drive new customers and new business. With greater satisfaction and faster average handle time for tickets, your new and existing customers may come to view your support channels as more effective and knowledgeable than your competitors. By allowing agents to build first-hand knowledge through joining relevant meetings, conversing with subject matter experts and taking part in cross-team dialogues, domain knowledge acquisition is greatly enhanced beyond using just fact sheets and feature lists.
At all times the goal is to create a foundation of knowledge and understanding that can be expanded upon and repurposed. For outsourced models, meetings and discussions can easily be handled remotely with strong communication throughout the delivery of the service.
Deep domain knowledge also provides benefits to many aspects of your customer support service. It isn’t just agent knowledge that improves. Their insights can also provide a deeper view into how your customers use your service.
Within the scope of customer journey mapping, domain knowledge helps to create accurate maps providing a visual representation of how a typical customer interacts with your agents and service. The buyer personas created from deep domain knowledge are invaluable in identifying gaps and pressure points within your service flow. Customer journey maps are also markedly improved when your agents understand the product and business: identifying and analysing strengths and weaknesses in your service becomes more fruitful, and change management become easier to implement as agents better understand why and where these changes are occurring.
Ultimately, deep domain knowledge is fundamental to enhancing customer experience. By refining the interpolating of information from your customer journey into knowledge-based actions, opportunities are created for more enjoyable and effortless interactions for your customers and agents, resulting in invaluable customer relationships.