Back in the day, customer interaction was mainly, single channel. Today, customers have multiple channels to interact with a firm. Thus, it is essential to adopt an omnichannel contact center approach to ensure that the non-linear interaction process doesn't hamper the customer interaction quality.
Think of a hypothetical situation. A customer calls up a contact center and raises a concern. The following interactions happen over texts and emails. Now, let's assume that the customer is unhappy with the resolution and escalates the situation by reaching out to the company on social media. The social team of the company may not be aware of the background of the complaint. As a result, someone might end up ticking the customer by recommending them to open a new ticket.
Such breaks in the process lead to customer attrition and eventual revenue erosion. If an Omnichannel Contact center is successfully implemented, it would be easy for the firm to pick up the request from social media and map it back to the in-progress conversation. The company would be able to present itself like a united front working together to solve the issue for the customer.
Customers have different choices when it comes to communicating with a firm. Some customers may prefer a good old-fashioned helpline; for some, an email-based interaction could be preferable, while some may want to look for a more modern and efficient channel like a chatbot. An omnichannel contact center ensures that the mode of communication doesn't hinder the service quality.
An Omnichannel contact center isn't just an asset that a company owns. Instead, it is a strategy that a company adopts for ensuring a proactive and consistent solutioning process for a customer. The customer need is at the center of an omnichannel contact center. If executed properly, it will ensure that there is no break in the process despite multiple teams, processes, and channels.
In a traditional approach, we may often end up disappointing a customer by putting a call on hold for too long or not responding to an email for days. When a customer has to navigate from one team to another for a resolution, and during each interaction, they need to restate context - you can imagine the frustration. An omnichannel contact center ensures that a customer gets a solution without going through the pain. Since the context is shared between all channels and teams - both parties win. There is time saved, resource better managed and customer trust re-established.
A multi-channel contact center allows a customer to reach out through multiple channels and touchpoints. Most companies have enabled the same for years. However, not all multi-channel contact centers provide an omnichannel experience. Consider the following example, a device at your home (e.g., your refrigerator) malfunctions, and you decide to reach out to the manufacturer for help. So you write a detailed mail to the support ID, explaining the problem and the urgency. Let's say in some time; you get a callback from the company. What if the person calling you back has no context of the problem that you have described? If you had to explain your situation again - wouldn't it lead to dissatisfaction?
In this case, the refrigerator company is indeed communicating to customers via different channels, but they do not provide an omnichannel experience.
On the other hand, companies that have effectively implemented omnichannel contact centers can successfully resolve issues over email and chat. It has enabled them to cut down on customer agent costs drastically.
Setting up an Omnichannel contact center requires investment in terms of both money and time. It is thus essential to adhere to the Omnichannel Contact Center best practices to ensure that you can reap maximum ROI from your efforts. This section will list some of the best practices that will ensure that your Omnichannel Contact Center is a success.
There is no need to build an Omnichannel contact center from scratch. Instead, you can transform your existing contact center into an omnichannel contact center by connecting it to a cloud solution. The cloud contact center solution ensures that your contact center data is synchronized with your other enterprise solutions, such as CRM.
Your architecture needs to provide for the integration of a maximum number of tools to your omnichannel contact center. The integration will ensure that the same data is shared between all your channels and will help you deliver a unified experience to your customers.
Mapping the online customer journey is extremely important to ensure that your contact center is intuitive and proactive. Using data analysis, you can reconstruct the typical customer journeys. The identified patterns will help you create intuitive self-serve platforms.
It would help if you smartened your omnichannel contact centers by powering them with AI. Having AI in the mix will deliver a more intuitive experience to your customers and ensure that your contact center gets better with time.
Brands today and made and destroyed in social media. While good service may not always win you accolades, bad service is likely to invite social media ire, potentially destroying a brand’s reputation. Online reputation management is usually high in a brand's agenda. When a flag is raised in social media, a brand needs to respond to it quickly and get straight to the solution. Adding social media data to the contact center cloud and help with the same.
An omnichannel contact center needs to be periodically updated to ensure that it adheres to evolving customer preferences. Some channels become popular with time, while some take a backseat. It’s thus important to keep load balancing to ensure that optimum performance levels are maintained.
In this section, we will look at how an omnichannel contact center can benefit the various stakeholders.
This is how it helps customers:
For customers, the most significant benefit is the seamless connection of channels. Customers need not worry about which channel to choose while reaching out to a company. It’s assuring to know that a problem expressed from any touchpoint will get resolved.
Intelligent routing of customer questions ensures faster resolution and saves time and effort for the customer.
Integrated applications ensure that context is not lost during the resolution process and saves the customer the agony of reiterating the same concern repeatedly.
An Omnichannel contact center can help agents perform their job better. Knowing more about the customer and the problem context helps agents resolve faster.
Eventually, it’s organizations that will gain the most from successful omnichannel contact center implementation. Providing efficient service is looked upon as a trait of an empathetic brand, and with time such a perception leads to competitive advantage.
A robust omnichannel contact center setup leads to both short- and long-term cost-cutting. It also helps in delighting customers, preventing customer attrition, and eventually leading to revenue growth.
Customer experience and management today holds the capability to make or break the name of an enterprise. It is essential old customers are taken care of while making way for the new ones. 7 Conversations has the potential to automate the customer experiences seamlessly, with omnichannel capabilities.
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