Omnichannel in businesses is more critical than ever before, and the same holds true in the contact center. In this blog, we’ll look at three ways you can build an omnichannel experience for you and your customers.
What Does Omnichannel Mean?
For businesses in the technology field and beyond, the term “omnichannel” is likely a word you hear regularly. Omnichannel has several definitions and there are often misconceptions around what the term means. Omnichannel isn’t simply piecing together one system for chat, another for email and another for calls, and then using that data separately without connecting the history.
One expert notes, “Omnichannel is a multichannel approach to sales that seeks to provide customers with a seamless shopping experience, whether they’re shopping online from a desktop or mobile device, by telephone, or in a brick-and-mortar store.” While this definition focuses strictly on the retail experience, the same holds true in the call center.
If you aren’t familiar with the name and haven’t incorporated omnichannel aspects into your solution, it’s possible you’re not meeting the needs of your customers in the digital experience sector. The good news is even if you are behind on this growing trend, there’s still time to implement. So, let’s look at three ways to fulfill the omnichannel experience in the call center.
Implement Quick-Response Channels
For the most part, when customers call into your contact center, they’re looking for a live agent to speak with. However, when an answer is needed fast, quick-response channels come in handy. There are two specific quick-response channels that we’ll take a closer look at – SMS and live chat.
SMS (or Short Message Service) is commonly known as texting. While it may seem out of the ordinary for a call center to have a texting option, it’s quite useful. SMS is an effective way to reach customers for reminders, urgent updates and FAQs without having to call or email. In fact, “When a client wants to reach out to a customer support agent, 52% of surveyed consumers said they would like to have the ability to do so via text message. While 47% said that texting would improve their overall customer service satisfaction,” says eWeek. Additionally, SMS relieves software congestion and reduces wait and lead time.
Live chat is also a prevalent option for call centers and businesses alike. The ability to get answers at the click of a button is one of the most critical features a company can have. In correlation with SMS, live chat gives customers quick access to help and reduces hold and wait time.
Personalize the Experience
A personalized experience can make or break customer retention. It’s what makes your service stand out from the rest and keep existing customers coming back. With omnichannel, that personalization is able to be implemented to the fullest. “The personalized, seamless experience your agents deliver is what makes or breaks a standout customer experience. It’s why companies with the strongest omnichannel engagement strategies retain an average of 89% of their customers, as compared to 33% for companies with weak omnichannel strategies,” says one expert.
A common aspect of omnichannel in the contact center is having a cloud foundation. Cloud is key to delivering that intuitive and personalized customer experience that prospects are looking for.
Evolve with Your Customers
As with anything, things change over time – and the same holds true for communication channels. As these channels change, so will the digital and omnichannel experience. The great thing about an omnichannel experience is that it should change. Being that a majority of your omnichannel experience is likely cloud-based, your strategy can be flexible and evolve. Customers are always looking for bigger and better and it’s the business’s responsibility to stay in tune with what that is. “Rather than taking a “set it and forget it approach”, ask your customers what they want out of the customer journey, and adjust to meet those needs.”
Being proactive in evolving with your customers and their needs will help you build stronger relationships with them and makes your organization prepare for the future.
The omnichannel experience is an ideal way to keep your customer retention high. Omnichannel can personalize every customer experience with quick-response channels and evolving opportunities. Businesses who have taken full advantage of the omnichannel experience are guaranteed to fulfill the needs of customers while staying ahead of the competition.