The field of contact center software solutions is one that is ever changing. Newer and better technologies are being used to enhance the arena of customer care. After all, a customer is a company’s top priority. That is the cardinal principle underlying every successful business. In the bygone years, phone calls were the only medium of communication for call centers.
In case a customer ran into difficulties, he or she would need to call the call center and wait for an agent to become available to handle their problems. But now, it has become easier than ever before. Call centers today do not simply reply on phone calls for communication. In fact today rarely are such operations carried out via calls.
That is where the concept of omnichannel support comes in. The very word should give you an idea of what we are talking about. It refers to the numerous media that call centers utilise in communicating with customers. Today, call center agents reach out to their customers through calls, emails, texts, web chat, voicemails, and the best contact center software.
What was almost unimaginable even a few years ago is the reality now. As a matter of fact, even your customers are becoming more tech savvy. With the easy availability of smart phones, the world wide web is at your fingertips now. Thus, why would your customers even want to go to the trouble of making phone calls?
However, when you’re making use of more than one kind of media to reach out to your customers, you’re going to have to take a few precautionary measures. You must keep in mind that not all your customers would be accustomed to this. Some might even be new to the whole idea and it is your duty to make them feel comfortable. Also, customers come to you with certain expectations.
These expectations automatically increase when you’re going for omnichannel support. While providing outbound contact center software solutions, it is important to make sure you match these expectations. Have you started with omnichannel support only recently? Then you could do with a bit of help. Take a look at these tips which can help you out-
Key To Excellent Customer Service With Omnichannel Support
• As agents at a call center, it is your duty to make sure that your customers feel comfortable. All customers that you talk to usually have a preferred mode of communication. Some might be more comfortable with phone calls while some may be better versed with emails. Taking the customer out of this comfort zone would only create an awkward situation and the customer may leave with a not so pleasant experience. You should use your contact center software to record your customer preference and then select the platform.
• As customer care professionals, you should be using customer contact center software that is flexible. You should be able to adjust to the situation as and when the need arises. If you’re giving your customers the option to choose between various platforms, you should make sure you’re equipped enough to handle all platforms. For example, a customer may feel the need to use video chat and a phone call to express clearly what he or she is going through or to give the agent a better insight into the problem. In that case, the agent needs to adjust accordingly.
• You should be able to sense the needs of the customer and compromise accordingly. Usually, in a call center, a manager or supervisor is present who deals with complex situations or when the agent is unable to deal with a situation. In that case, the customer is handed over to the supervisor. But if you think about it, you’ll see that this is extra hassle that could have been avoided easily. For instance, if you’re dealing with a customer and you realise that simply a phone call isn’t enough for him to express his issue. In that case, you could suggest a video call or something similar.
• The basic purpose of call centers is to provide effective solutions in a short span of time. The issues your customers present you with are often easy, but they take up a lot of time. You can avoid that by working in an organized manner. The customer support staff should be able to sense the issue and understand how much time it’ll take up. Based on that, they should address the issue in a timely manner. Also, that’s why most call centers are today opting for texting since it carries with it a note of urgency.
• Seldom will you come across a customer today who isn’t active on social media. There are so many platforms today that allow you to reach out to your customers free of cost. Did you know that at least 67% of your customers prefer to use social media when it comes to customer care? The best contact center crm software would allow you to integrate social media into your operations. However, you should be prepared to deal with huge traffic on all the social media platforms you’re using. That’s one thing you need to keep in mind before you actually take the plunge.
Using Different Platforms for Customer Care
• You should make it a point to automate some of your services. While working at a call center, you’re going to encounter a number of issues from customers. Some of them might be minor ones that are really easy to solve. In that case, you could automate these services. That means your customers would be able to find solutions to these problems all by themselves. The contact center management software that you usually use would allow you to automate some of your services. It would actually make things much easier for you and your customer.
• Since your customers would be making use of multiple channels in order to communicate with you, it is important to provide them with a responsive service. You need to respond to them in the manner they want. Remember this- each customer is unique and comes with special needs. And as the customer care executive, it is your duty to make sure that you understand each of these needs and strive to fulfil all of them. Only then can you expect to score high in customer satisfaction.
• Sales associates are an integral aspect of your customer care. They are the ones who can pitch to your customers and tilt the scales in your favour. In order for these sales associates to have the desired effect on your customer, you need to arm them with sufficient information. For example, in an ecommerce store, you should provide them with adequate knowledge about each product. That way, they can assist the customer when they run into difficulties. Without that, the sales associates would not be adding much value to your team.
• When it comes to customer care, you should always keep your clients in the loop. Complete transparency is always appreciated in such cases. Your customers should never feel left out; nor should they ever feel that you’re hiding something from them. That’s because the relationship between the customer and the company relies entirely on trust. That’s why it is better to keep them informed. If you have made some new developments in the case or have uncovered some new information, then it is your duty to inform your customer immediately.
• If you are making your call center accessible across multiple platforms, then you need to come up with a stunning website. That should be the first thing on your agenda. The website you create should be well designed and responsive. One look at it should be enough to convey the message to the customer. You need to make sure that it has been tested beforehand. Remember, customers are impatient. You need to strike when you have the chance and create a lasting impression before they get impatient and leave your website.
Tips for Omnichannel Customer Support
• If you’re planning to use live chat, then there are a few things you need to keep in mind. The customer usually opts for live chat because they do not want to be kept on hold. That’s why you need to ensure that the chat is answered within thirty seconds. You could use a kind of survey to check the speed and the quality of your service. The worst case scenario would have to be when a customer sends a message on live chat but that goes unanswered for a few minutes. Sadly, you’ve already lost your customer by then. And you certainly don’t want that.
• Today, you have the benefit of the best software for contact center. That means you would be able to use metrics and software that allow you to see where your customers are. When we say that, we really mean identifying the top prospects that would be bringing in a lot of business. You would have some cost effective marketing solutions which allow you to reach out to more number of customers. This is where omnichannel support comes in handy. If you’ve identified your target audience, you’ll know which channel would be optimum.
• Emails are fairly common when it comes to customer care. Statistics and surveys show that most customers would rather send an email to the customer care id than actually call them up. That’s mainly because it saves a lot of time and most people feel they can express themselves better in writing. If you’re having the email option, you should make it a point to answer your mails within a couple of hours. Also, make sure your mails are personalised. For example, don’t forget to use the customer’s name while replying to the mail.
• Working in an organized manner is of prime importance in this case. At call centres, you won’t have a separate set of agents for tending to calls and others to emails. Each agent would have to reply to mails, receive phone calls, and answer live chat messages and so on. It would be very easy to go haywire and even get distracted. Multitasking is one skill you’ll have to work on in that case. You’re going to have to learn how to bypass the workload and work in an organized fashion. That way, you’ll be able to finish all your tasks in a short period of time.
• Your customers should be able to switch between platforms. When they approach you, you’re already giving them the opportunity to select the platform they are comfortable with. Now, you should enable them to switch between platforms if the need arises. For example, if a customer is unable to communicate properly through emails, he or she should feel free to call you up and explain. The contact center reporting software that you’re using should be versatile to make things easier for your customer.
The Case Study
Traditionally, most companies tended to stick to the traditional modes of communication like phone calls. But as a business expands, that can be increasingly hard to do. For example, in an ecommerce company or a food delivery company, simply making themselves accessible through telephone wouldn’t suffice. That’s precisely why some of the biggest corporations around the world are turning to multiple channels of communication. The case study (below) will tell you exactly why and how you should implement omnichannel support.
You must be familiar with the brand name of Domino’s Pizza. The brand has more than a thousand outlets overall and each guarantees top services and even home delivery.
The company allows its customers to browse the menu online and even place the menu online. Now what if the customer needs help placing the order? Or maybe, they have placed the wrong order and need to change it. Or worse yet, what if the customer needs urgent help? In such cases, would it be enough to just call them up? The answer is no. That is why Domino’s came up with a strong customer care strategy that allowed them to communicate with customers across numerous platforms. Domino’s not only allows customer care in person, but also can be approached through the website, apps, and mobiles and so on.
The Final Outcome
If that had not been the case, do you think it would have been possible to deliver all their orders efficiently and also uphold their famous “30 minutes or free” offer? Also, they cannot compromise on quality since that is what makes the brand so popular. If you take a look at Domino’s strategies, you’ll see that the mantra is pretty simple. They provide an omnichannel support. Most importantly, they treat each channel in the same way. Their main goal is to provide the same efficient service that they are known for across any platform as chosen by the customer. Since the customer holds the key, that naturally raises the level of customer satisfaction.
When it comes to servicing customers, each business has more or less similar goals. You must do too. Then it is time to embrace what technology has to offer and make the most of the various modes of communication that are at your fingertips.