What is the correct definition of customer portal? What are the most common features? What type of features do they usually offer? Why is it a cost-effective solution for companies? With this article, we will try to give an exhaustive answer to all the above questions.

Definition of Customer Portal

A customer portal is a central hub that serves as a single point of access for business information. A well-designed gateway that users can connect to in order to exchange information and access available services. The basic concept of a customer portal is to provide a single platform from which to access all the company’s self-service features. Features that are available and can be accessed 24/7. Customers, through their Customer Portal, thus have the ability to manage information, share data, send requests and actively interact with the company.

Characteristics of a Customer Portal

A single platform, as we have said, in which to convey more resources and more channels. It is a tool to meet customer needs with complete and ready-to-use answers.
Today’s technologies must accompany the new needs: greater speed, autonomy, flexibility and adaptability to changes, timely and easily available replies.
In summary, the user portal is the frontend interface end users see. If properly configured it also allows quick access to extra features such as Live chat and Knowledge base. To go into details, it is appropriate to specify that there are different types of customer portals depending on the sector and the features available. Below we see some of the most popular features.

Example Deepser Interface,Software Customer Portal

KNOWLEDGE BASE

A knowledge base is an organized and shared collection of content relating to a services and products offered by the company. Through the Knowledge Base KnowIedge Base the user can easily consult general information and self-solve some issues. FAQs, manuals, tutorials and guides at your fingertips. A useful tool to allow greater user autonomy and considerable time savings for the company.

SERVICE CATALOG

The Service Catalog provides a list of all the services offered with related details. It offers users the ability to submit any need for a particular assets or devices, addressing it automatically to the correct department. Thanks to a smart system of permission visibilities, you can limit the request for certain types of services. You can collect the most relevant information by showing dynamic forms with fields useful for that particular type of service, guaranteeing speed of execution, extreme precision and thus time and cost optimization.

LIVE CHAT / CHATBOT

Two other very common features of a customer portal software are the live chat and chatbot. Some customer portals offer live online assistance with instant messaging tools, particularly useful when the customer needs prompt and quick help. Another feature are chatbots, based on artificial intelligence. They increase a rapid resolution of most issues users have without the need of having an actual support agent communicating with them. Offering automatic remote support is an inestimable advantage for the company, in terms of time and resources needed to assist customers.

What are the advantages for customers and companies?

Adopting a customer portal software brings many advantages for the company itself and its customers. Let’s see the main ones:

  • Greater autonomy

One of the first benefits is certainly customer autonomy: the “self-service” mode allows them to solve many problems independently 24/7, thus saving time and energy. This allows companies to provide support even when support agents are not available. For instance, through a customer portal MSPs can provide assistance even outside office hours, offering relevant information and FAQ.

  • Single Point of Access

Another benefit of using a customer portal is giving customers a single point of access to information. These portals can be accessed with or without credentials, depending on the type of clients and the company’s procedures. In the more basic portals, where customer login is not required and the platform is visible online to anyone, information provided, such as FAQs and other guides, is general and accessible by all users. Portals that require login credentials, on the other hand, allow you to share more specific, private and sensitive information to individual users.

  • Greater Customer Engagement and Interaction

Customer portals offer a meaningful experience for the user who feels most actively involved, being able to get hands on the platform, sharing ideas, comments and opinions, as well as to explore the information available independently. Furthermore, the ease of interaction between company and customer improves the quality of the relationship while creating a communication and needs history.

  • Resource Optimization

On the client’s side, self-service portals allow to speed up response times; on the company side we see an increase in resource optimization, in particular when it comes to the workload of support agents. Less effort to solve easy and repetitive requests that can be automated or self-solved by users; more time and attention, on the other hand, in solving more complex and relevant tickets.

  • Reduced costs and times

The costs of implementing a customer portal are paid off in the mid-long term. By avoiding additional resources, reducing extra office hours and taking advantage of a self-service ticketing system, companies can optimize processes, reducing complexities and the amount of work previously needed to perform all support activities.

  • Greater Accessibility

Information at your fingertips and accessible 24/7 from any device and location, thus ensuring more productivity and ease in managing information.

User Portal example, Deepser.
  • Customization

It is possible to customize a customer portal in different ways depending on the software used. With Deepser Portal Designer, you can customize the customer portal to your liking, designing it with the features and characteristics you need: add videos, guides, images and lists with personalized tickets according to different visibility limitations and permissions.

To conclude, we can say that overall a user portal grants customers greater autonomy, providing uninterrupted support and complete access to all shared information, 24/7, in a single tool. All this translates into an improvement in the service quality and greater customer satisfaction. Do you want to try a customer portal software? Activate a free demo

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