RightNow Adds Chat to Feedback Offering

RightNow is adding chat to its expanding Feedback feature set. The new functionality is part of the application’s May ’08 update to its flagship CRM product.

“By adding feedback into RightNow chat, we have filled out our multichannel story,” Andrew Hull, director of product marketing for RightNow, told CRM Buyer. RightNow has rolled out feedback for chat, e-mail, voice and the Web. Feedback after chat, Hull added, is a quickly growing customer demand, especially as more and more retailers offer chat as part of the channel lineup.

Feedback in chat is triggered after an online chat interaction with a service agent, when the customer automatically receives a survey. Feedback can also be gathered from anonymous online consumers, such as someone who recently abandoned a shopping cart. Results are compiled for trend analysis, and individual responses are included within customer profiles for future, more personalized service.

Phone, E-mail, Web and Now Chat

In keeping with its self-service roots, RightNow began introducing feedback functionality a little over a year ago in the form of satisfaction surveys delivered over the phone, via e-mail, on the Web — and now, with this version, with online chat. While the integration technology differs depending on the channel, at bottom Feedback acts the same across all the applications: It gathers and unifies customer opinions and then automatically shunts the information to the necessary contact for action.

Feedback management has been a growing focus for RightNow, Rebecca Wettemann, vice president of Nucleus Research, told CRM Buyer. “They have been working to provide access to feedback through all the different self-service channels.” The functionality’s text-analytics, which puts the structured and unstructured data in context for the company, is also key to this feature, she added.

For instance, in its August 2007 rollout of version 8.2, RightNow incorporated emotion detection into its Feedback module. This capability measures how a customer feels about the organization by rating the text-based customer communications. The customer service rep uses this rating to personalize the service the customer receives — meaning she wouldn’t try to cross-sell a new product to a customer who is irked by the service she is already receiving.

The company also incorporated feedback functionality in its retail-specific application, which it released this February. Called “Voice of the Customer,” it gave retailers the option of one of five different customer service surveys to capture and measure feedback, including negative comments, which can be immediately routed to the appropriate contact in the organization.

Building Up

RightNow has been steadily building up functionality in other areas of its feature set as well.

In the last update RightNow released in February, it enhanced its feature set with new agent desktop functionality, customer-tracking abilities, enhanced analytics and chat features.

February ’08 also included a contextual workspace — that is, a user interface for contact center service reps that changes dynamically based on the context of the agent’s task and information about the customer — and added the appropriate integration with relevant applications, such as the return merchandise authorization system. It also added “topic monitoring,” which captures and automatically categorizes common topics based on textual feedback.

In its November ’07 release, RightNow leveraged its self-service and knowledge management tool sets to deliver a syndication widget. This allows companies to syndicate and then distribute certain content about pricing or warranty information across several Web sites that may fall outside of the corporate Web site. This application was preceded by a sitemate feature it introduced in August that allowed users to index knowledge foundations, making them accessible to search engines and by an industry specific app called “RightNow Consumer Electronics.”

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