In a move that should surprise no one, Salesforce.com(s crm) is bumping up the mobile capabilities of its Service Cloud offering, making it easier for users of mobile shopping and banking apps to get help and customer service right from the apps running on their smartphones or tablets.
In essence, the technology — which needs to be implemented by Service Cloud customers including merchants, banks and gaming providers — aims to keep customers interested and active in their interactions and give them real assistance, said Alex Bard, SVP and GM for Salesforce.com’s Service Cloud and Desk.com unit. The goal is to bring the sort of in-app experience folks now get from advanced web applications — co-browsing, in-application support, chat as well as easy access to knowledge bases and support forums — to their device of choice
Say you see a transaction on your bank account that looks iffy. Service Cloud Mobile will enable you to easily enter an instant chat session with your bank’s customer support agent, who can walk you through what it is, when it happened and perhaps who in your family transacted it, if anyone. Or if you are stuck at a certain level of a popular game and you’d like some advice on how to proceed, you could hit a button to enter a community forum or FAQ site to get hints.
Current Service Cloud customers include KLM Airlines, Comcast, Activision, and Spotify — Salesforce.com claims 34,000 customers in all.
The offering wraps in co-browsing technology Salesforce.com acquired last year with its buyout of GoInstant last year.
Co-browsing should be available in the second half of the year. Access to Mobile Service Cloud Communities and Service Cloud mobile chat is available now. Chat costs $50 per user per month for customers of Service Cloud Enterprise and Unlimited Edition.
All of this is pretty important stuff for bankers, merchants, and game impresarios eager to keep existing customers happy and supported — and draw in new customers from less-enlightened competitors.