True to our founding principles here at The Customer Collective, our aim is to put real power in the hands of the consumer, whether those consumers are directly involved with us by making use of our services or indeed if they’re merely readers of our blog. Naturally the quickest way to deliver access to that power is just by sharing useful and actionable information, but what many of our readers may not know is that we actually run a physical iteration of The Customer Collective through which we get our hands dirty and literally explore channels through which consumers can access the power that’s due to them.
Are we going to get into great detail with it? You can bet your bottom dollar we are and we encourage those of our readers who are more proactive to copy this model, refine it and implement it in their own circles so that you are equipped with the “how” as well and not just the theory. We’re even going to get technical about it, explaining how we use the Wix Answers Customer Support platform to ensure the smooth running of the whole operation.
Let’s get right into it, shall we?
A little bit about the deployed platform solution
We’ll be discussing the technical aspects of the platform in a little bit more detail shortly, but it’s perhaps pertinent to give a brief overview of Wix Answers. As alluded to already, Wix Answers is indeed a Customer Support platform, which would imply that it’s naturally aimed at any enterprising entity which seeks to deploy a powerful customer support solution, through which they can use this customer support software easily to offer helpdesk-type support to their customers. It’s free as well which lends a lot to its overall value, but as much as this platform is naturally aimed at businesses offering a specific product or service, I believe that we perhaps make the best use of its features.
At The Customer Collective we aren’t in ourselves offering a specific set of products and services sold directly to the public, but we make full use of Wix Answers to offer “customer support” to our “customers”. Who are our “customers” and why do I make reference to them in inverted commas?
The Customer Collective Concept in action
As far as the mentioned physical iteration of The Customer Collective concept goes, our customers are community members who live in close enough proximity to each other to exercise the ability to come together and periodically buy products and services they regularly buy as a collective. This collective buying replaces what would otherwise be the regular buying practice which is individualised, this so that they can simply take advantage of the major savings which come with buying in bulk and sourcing what they buy as close to the manufacturer or primary producer as possible.
Naturally these are products and services they buy regularly and in common with each other, for example in a certain block in a certain neighbourhood all the households buy a loaf of bread every day in addition to something like a certain brand of sugar once or twice a month, week, etc. Now, instead of buying these at a regional retailer who would naturally charge them the retail price, they source them directly from the producers having first collected the money and then buying them at the stockist price.
Deploying the Wix Answers Customer Support Platform Solution
This is operated like a regular business and since each of the “customers” of the business forms part of the operations with the view of ultimately benefitting from the savings to be attained, the hired “staff” comes from these “customers” and they don’t really collect a pay cheque. They’re more like volunteers who ensure the smooth running of their own operation…
In all honesty I don’t know how we would have made it work without Wix Answers, because as you might have guessed an operation such as this is fraught with so many opportunities for little things to go wrong here and there, naturally giving rise to many organisational and operational questions which need answering. We don’t want any of the members in the bulk-buyers club to waste any of their time and resources running around all over the show to get the answers they need, so they can get all the information they need quickly and easily via the Wix Answers integrated platform.
To be quite honest if you wanted to replicate this model all you’d really need is the Wix Answers platform by way of your integrated tech, as well as people who are willing to come together to take advantage of the savings that come with group buying. Since we’re not really a business which profits directly from our clients’ pockets we haven’t really made full use of the ability to fully brand the platform users have, but it is indeed a very handy feature for businesses servicing end-users directly.
A feature we do indeed make full use of though is that of the ticketing system, which just by the way comes with multi-channel support.
The built-in call centre capabilities are often put to a real test when each next buying cycle nears, but all of this power contained in this help desk software can be easily deployed by users who don’t have any IT skills to speak of.
I guess the best-in-class SEO trait is one which would perhaps take the fancy of actual businesses which would be deploying this integrated solution, otherwise as far as it goes with our operation this DIY platform has opened us up to a window into a whole new world of efficiency in customer care management.