A recent Deloitte research sites that 62% of companies perceive contact centers as a “competitive advantage” that drives additional customers. Definitely, in the age when services dominate over the products, few will argue with the importance of contact centers.
It must be acknowledged that additional services (contact centers are among them) are the new drivers of the world economy. Basically, they ensure customer loyalty. So, how could any of us provide those services to clients through plain and straightforward communication channels?
Fortunately, we’ve got plenty of web tools and technologies that connect business and its clients. The question is – what communication channels should be used in first place. In addition to this answer, we’ll give a hint on how to adopt communications tools at low cost and with maximum efficiency?
How to Improve Communication with Web Technologies
Let’s start with a quick answer to the question how do companies communicate with customers? There are three ways: in person, through partners, and via tech channels: call centers, preliminary consultation programs, social channels, live chats, and video chats.
The most common communication channel that still has something to offer. The most basic options are IP-telephony (VoIP/GoIP), call recording and IVR (Interactive Voice Response). Those features can be implemented by using open-source module communication system called Asterisk. You may need some help installing it or building something custom on top of it.
If you’ve already established a call center or using an existing web-based solution – consider adding such features:
- Integration with CRM system.
- Mass-notification platform.
- Click-to-Call Module (calls from browser window).
- Personalized Greeting (IVR based).
- Skills-based routing (distribution of calls according to inquiries).
- Whisper coaching (allows training manager drop in on a live call and advise the agent without the caller hearing).
Frankly speaking, there are already plenty of ready-made solutions that will be much cheaper for your business compared to the development of a custom call center system.
On the other hand, those services are usually closed for additional integrations. Their business model is built on the principle of selling add-ons and internal modules. Therefore, if you’ll someday need to integrate existing IP-telephony software with third-party services like Google Docs, Facebook Messenger, Project Management System – contact us.
Sales funnel stage that becomes especially important nowadays. Especially for companies that sell services. Needless to say that this is a vital stage that directly affects the conversion rates.
Whether you make a short onboarding chit-chat or a project cost estimation, you deliver it with one purpose in mind – allow a future-be-client to test your expertise without actually paying for it. From here we’re talking about all extra efforts companies usually make before actually signing a contract with a client.
Preliminary consulting occurs before client actually makes a direct call or meets with a sales representative in person. That’s why it is usually performed using email, Skype or WhatsApp. And here’s where the issues may arrive.
Sadly, those channels are low accountable and still do not synchronize automatically with most CRM systems. Ask if your sales manager filling in CRM about first contacts manually. If so, there is no point in CRS at all. How is it possible the system that is called to eliminate all the routine works and be a reminder doesn’t take part in the customer acquisition process.
How to improve communication on consultation stage:
- Enable email synchronization i CRM.
- Unify all additional channels (Skype, Viber, WhatsApp, WeChat, etc).
- Log communication history (e.g. call recording).
- Auto-adapt presentational materials to the specifics of the channel (size, format, greetings).
Statistics said that 71% of consumers who have had a good social media service experience are likely to recommend the brand to others. Back in 2015 Facebook influenced 52% of customers to make a purchase.
On the other hand, 96% of people that are talking about specific brand do not follow this brands in social media. How’s that? How do people can be influenced by brands without directly interacting through social media?
Everlane, an online clothing company known for its radical openness, has taken advantage of such situation. The company has initially decided to established all communication with its customers through Facebook Messenger. No confirmation emails, phone calls, and SMS. If a customer is on the facebook, they are here to talk.
Thank to such strategy the company reinforced its presence in social media and tied their online sales with marketing efforts on Facebook. Everlane chose the most convenient channel for communication with its audience. Not the one comfy for a company, but for clients.
If you advertise through social media and have clients using one of those channels, you probably need to communicate with them through this channel as well.
- Integrate Instagram Direct into CRM, Project Management Platform.
- Integrate Facebook Messenger into CRM, Project Management Platform.
- Send confirmation messages to Facebook and Instagram instead of email.
Within 5 years millennials will become a new domination class in terms of spending. One thing to know about this audience is that they prefer text messages to direct phone calls and human interaction. Therefore, make sure to prepare a separate database for text information along with those where audio files are stored.
Another communication technology that will definitely increase your customer satisfaction rate is Live Chats. This web communication format reduces the time people spend on interaction, enables multitasking, and even allows you to integrate chatbot.
There are many other ways of how to improve customer service, but making so through communication is probably the best and easiest way. Science we’re all social beings communication is still on the table.
Start from unifying all your web communication channels, integrate with CRM, refine your database, in order to use it for automated analytics, and contact us for a help if needed.
Tony Sol is the business development manager of GBKSOFT, overseeing the production of all writings for both internal blog and external platforms. He is technical-driven person always looking for new benefits of merging business and software.
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