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Top 10 Customer Service Trends for 2024

Discover how to leverage cutting-edge trends like AI-driven support, centralised data, and ethical business practices to revolutionise your customer service in 2024 and beyond.

As technology advances, the state of customer service changes along with it. Our research shows that 65% of customers expect companies to adapt to their needs, and technologies like generative AI will play a major role in meeting those evolving expectations. Here are five customer service trends to remember as you prepare for the year ahead. 

AI is already a major force for great customer service. But knowing how to use it well will put you ahead of your competitors — and make your customers happier. As you build your plans for 2024 and beyond, ensure these trends influence your decisions.

Table of contents

High-performing service organisations use data and AI to improve efficiency without sacrificing the customer experience. Find out how in our latest State of Service report.

1. Self-service will get smarter

Generative AI will help you deliver great customer self-service, with super-powered chatbots and auto-generated knowledge base articles

AI-driven chatbots will play an important role in responding to simple customer issues, freeing agents to spend more time on high-complexity, high-value interactions. With generative AI tapping into customer resolution data to analyse sentiment and patterns, service organisations will be able to identify customer service trends and accelerate bot training.

2. Data will become more centralised

Many organisations keep data in different silos or applications, so it’s difficult to get a complete view of the customer across all channels. 

Bringing customer data together is all about creating an end-to-end view of the entire customer journey. This way, you’ll have a continuous feedback loop between sales, service, and other departments within your organisation. Doing this makes sure all your teams are on the same page and speaking the same language.

Here’s how you can make this happen in 2024:

  • Identify silos: Start by identifying all the places where your customer data is stored. It could be in different software applications, databases, or even spreadsheets. Break down those data silos and bring everything under one roof.
  • Choose the right tools: Invest in the right data integration tools that can seamlessly connect all these data sources. 
  • Establish data governance: Think of this as setting rules for your data playground. Define who has access to what data, who’s responsible for maintaining it, and how data should be updated. 
  • Create a single customer view: By having one complete view of each customer, everyone on your team can see the full customer journey.
  • Train your teams: Just like learning a new language, your teams need training on how to use your data effectively. Make sure everyone knows how to access and interpret the right information at the right time to make informed decisions.
  • Monitor and refine: Unifying data isn’t a one-time thing; it’s an ongoing process. Keep an eye on data quality, performance, and how well your teams are using it.

3. Conversational AI assistants will take service to the next level

The introduction of conversational AI assistants is already transforming the future of customer service. These new AI-driven assistants will help customer service agents solve one of their biggest problems – spending too much time searching for information. 

AI assistants will surface the right information at the right time to speed up interactions, improve customer satisfaction, and increase loyalty. Here’s what that looks like in practice:  

  • Responding to customers with personalised, relevant answers grounded in trusted company knowledge across any preferred channel — including email, SMS, live chat and social media 
  • Resolving customer issues faster using generative answers seamlessly integrated into agents’ flow of work
  • Auto-summarising intricate support cases and field work orders

4. AI will make the frontline more productive

AI is improving productivity for workers in the field. One of the emerging benefits of AI in field service is the ability to generate insights and predict job duration. Workers can use AI to view asset conditions and maintenance and repair history easily, then schedule proactive service to minimise downtime.  

With Generative AI, your customers can also book and reschedule their appointments. They’ll be able to check when their technician is on the way, reducing no-shows and call volume for a better experience.

5. Trust will become a competitive advantage

While generative AI is exciting, many customers are unaware of the risks. That’s why privacy, security, and trust will become a major competitive advantage in the new AI landscape. 

As we move into 2024, high-performing companies will adopt programs that prevent large-language models (LLMs) from retaining sensitive customer data. More organisations will train their own domain-specific models to access a secure AI cloud while storing data on their own infrastructure. These efforts will be important to preserving customers’ loyalty and trust.

6. Customers Expect Companies to Lead with Their Values

Customers increasingly expect companies to embody and lead with their values in today’s business landscape. Beyond offering quality products or services, customers are drawn to businesses that align with their ethical principles. Whether environmental sustainability, social responsibility, or ethical business practices, customers want to engage with companies that share their values. Building a brand that prioritises and communicates its values fosters customer loyalty and contributes to a positive corporate image in the eyes of socially conscious consumers.

7. The Rise of Messaging

With the continuous evolution of digital communication, the rise of messaging platforms has significantly transformed how businesses interact with their customers. Messaging provides a convenient and instantaneous channel for customers to reach out to businesses and vice versa. Whether through chatbots or direct messaging, this trend reflects the growing preference for real-time communication. As customers seek immediate responses and personalised interactions, businesses that leverage messaging platforms effectively can enhance customer engagement and satisfaction, ultimately contributing to a more positive overall customer experience.

8. Automation Improves Experiences for Customers and Agents

The integration of automation in customer service processes has revolutionised the customer experience landscape. Automation tools like chatbots and automated workflows streamline routine tasks, allowing for faster response times and improved efficiency. Not only does automation enhance the speed of service for customers, but it also empowers service agents by freeing them from repetitive tasks, enabling them to focus on more complex and value-added aspects of customer interactions. A well-implemented automation strategy can increase customer satisfaction, reduced agent workload, and overall operational excellence.

9. Emphasis on Agility

In the dynamic and rapidly evolving business environment, agility has become a key factor in providing excellent customer service. Companies that adapt quickly to changing customer needs, market trends, and technological advancements gain a competitive edge. Agility in customer service means being responsive to feedback, promptly addressing issues, and adjusting strategies to meet evolving expectations. By fostering an agile mindset, businesses can stay ahead of the curve, ensuring that their customer service practices remain relevant and effective in constant change.

10. The Data Transparency Advantage

Customers today value transparency in their business interactions, particularly concerning using personal data. Companies that prioritise data transparency build trust with their customer base. Customers’ understanding of how their data is collected, used, and protected enhances their confidence in the company. Additionally, transparent communication about data practices helps businesses comply with privacy regulations and establishes a foundation for a positive customer relationship. Leveraging data transparency as an advantage meets customer expectations and contributes to long-term customer loyalty and satisfaction.

How can you pursue innovation while maintaining the integrity of your data? How do you build customers’ trust in emerging technologies? And what’s the secret to delivering faster, more effective customer service without breaking the bank?  

The right technologies can help you get ahead of customer service trends — and remain resilient in the face of change. By training your agents to use generative AI, you can increase productivity, resolve cases faster, and deepen customer relationships for a clear advantage in 2024 and beyond.

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Salesforce Staff

The 360 Blog from Salesforce teaches readers how to improve work outcomes and professional relationships. Our content explores the mindset shifts, organisational hurdles, and people behind business evolution. We also cover the tactics, ethics, products, and thought leadership that make growth a meaningful and positive experience.

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