Since the beginning of the global pandemic in March 2020, companies have realized the lack of flexibility of their customer service using only physical switchboards. The growth and development of the means of communication are constantly increasing. There are many ways to contact a company. From a simple phone call to automated discussions through a “bot”, a wide choice is offered to companies to converse with their customers.
The aim is not to rely on one communication channel only. In order to optimize, a company that wants to satisfy its customers must show its presence on several channels simultaneously, this is the omnichannel.
In this article we will discuss the definition of omnichannel and how it has become more than important for today’s customer services. We will finish by detailing some examples of channels to add to your call center to adopt this strategy.
What is omnichannel ?
The omnichannel concept specifies all the contact channels that the company provides to customers. An omnichannel strategy is generally a response to changing consumer expectations and behaviors. The goal is to keep a continuous interaction with the customer where all information remains recorded to improve their contact experience and increase their satisfaction.
Today perceived as a competitive advantage, an omnichannel customer service will be, in some time, a requirement from customers. It is therefore necessary to develop customer service on as many channels as possible.
Difference with multichannel
We should not be mistaken in associating this definition with multi-channel. In reality, omnichannel is an extension of multichannel and consists in having a simultaneous presence on all channels. Moreover, in an omnichannel strategy, the different channels are central, linked to each other, which is not the case in a multichannel strategy. In the latter, there are different channels to increase the possibility of interacting with the consumer, but there is not necessarily a relationship between them.
In an omnichannel customer service, the user is placed at the center of a whole network of communications and functionalities. In this way, we offer consumers the opportunity to communicate in the way that is most convenient for them at that moment. Whereas a multi-channel communication strategy does not include this aspect because it only aims at a better customer experience.
The benefits of an omnichannel communication strategy
We have discussed the definition of this concept and the benefits for customers. But how can a company benefit from an omnichannel communication strategy?
- Improved customer satisfaction: customers who contact you will appreciate the personalized and efficient attention they will receive, which will increase positive feedback.
- Loyalty: Improving the user’s experience during a contact is synonymous with loyalty. Customer satisfaction will make them want to come back and use the services of the same company and recommend them.
- Sales growth: Better customer satisfaction will lead to a definite increase in sales. Moreover, omnichannel allows to develop on several points of sale and thus to increase the number of potential customers.
- Know your customers better: By multiplying the number of communication channels, you end up having more “one-to-one” interactions with your customers and therefore get to know them better and be able to offer them more personalized attention..
How to succeed in your omnichannel strategy?
An omnichannel communication is centered around the customer, but it must also be centered on itself so that information and interactions reach the same core. To centralize information and incoming interactions, the perfect tool will be a call center software that allows you to integrate with different applications, like WhatsApp or your company’s CRM.
With a virtual call center, your agents can manage communications from anywhere, with a device connected to the Internet and no need for physical hardware. These call center software have the advantage of receiving interactions from multiple channels from a single platform. We detail some examples of channels to add to your call center:
Most users already have an instant messaging application on their smartphones. People today are looking for ways to get a quick response. This way, an email address, a contact form and a phone number have become commonplace. With a call center integrated with these tools, customers can have the ability to contact a company and resolve their issues directly from the world’s most used instant messaging application: WhatsApp. But also from a conventional call. Messages from WhatsApp are handled on the same platform as normal calls, which they will like, and we will gain efficiency.
In addition, you can now automate the most repetitive tasks by leaving them to an Artificial Intelligence system. Through chatbots and callbots, your customers whose requests are simple, whether in terms of account management or to get information, do not need to wait for an agent to get free to answer them. These conversational robots allow agents to spend more time on tasks that require more attention. With these AIs, the company is showing its customers that it is adapting to the evolution of society and is being modern.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
Being customer-focused, it is necessary that this omnichannel strategy makes your customer service very personalized. An important thing to do is to implement your CRM (customer file management software) to your call center software. This will allow you to view the users’ information before giving a response, but also to be able to modify the data before, during and after the conversation, all synchronized between all departments of your company. Therefore, no matter from what medium and for what reason a customer contacts us, the company has all the information needed to offer him special attention.
When we talk about omnichannel, we also talk about the customer journey, which can be summed up as all the stages and channels through which the customer will pass. The goal of the strategy is to optimize this journey. Adding a way to be able to pay an order or invoices, for example, directly during interactions would be very convenient for the user. In addition to being a completely secure payment method, it saves time for both the company and the consumer.
Finally, we understand that it is essential to master this strategy to continue to attract prospects and build customer loyalty. At Fonvirtual, we offer a selection of functionalities and we help companies set up their omnichannel communication strategy adapted to their needs so that they can impose the notoriety of their customer service.