Customers expect everything, everywhere, all at once. Omnichannel customer service is quickly becoming the norm for consumers and according to research, while they may only represent 7% of customers, they generate 27% of all sales!
Omnichannel experiences mean customers will often begin their research online or in-store, and then they’ll convert further down the line, perhaps over the phone. Wherever they like to buy from you, it’s clear customer journeys are no longer as linear as going from A to B. They’re more like A to D, then to H, then a pitstop at Z.
In this blog, we’ll explore the benefits of omnichannel customer service for contact centers. We’ll also define what an omnichannel contact strategy is, the four pillars of a successful omnichannel strategy, and how to optimise it in your contact center for better results.
What is an omnichannel contact center strategy?
What does an omnichannel strategy mean anyway? An omnichannel contact center strategy enables customers to interact with your business on any given channel at any given time. These channels can include phone calls, emails, social media, SMS, live chat, and online forms.
But what differentiates a good omnichannel strategy from a great one? It’s about making sure your customers receive consistently excellent experiences, no matter which channel they choose. True omnichannel experiences mean customers don’t need to keep repeating themselves, instead your customer collects data that provides a holistic view of every customer across every interaction, guaranteeing the best possible service.
How to create a 5-star omnichannel contact center strategy
If you want to create a best-in-class omnichannel contact center strategy, there are four pillars of omnichannel marketing for you to pay attention to. These are:
Visibility – You know your customers are moving between channels. You can gain full visibility of their journey through a fully integrated tech stack, which can track consumers whether they’re online researching or offline picking up the phone.
Measurement – According to one study, 82% of people felt that the inability to measure cross-channel performance is a barrier to a true omnichannel strategy. Contact centers need to understand and measure where calls are coming from.
Personalisation – Use customer data collected across the board, online and offline, to personalise customer interactions and provide consistently excellent customer service. You need tools that can properly track, analyse, and automate data across the board.
Optimisation – Test, test, and test some more: Make sure you’re gathering customer feedback and use it to optimise the omnichannel experience, and make incremental improvements based on data-driven decision-making.
What are the benefits of omnichannel contact centers?
An omnichannel strategy means putting your customers front and center, prioritising efficiency of operations and overall convenience. The key benefits of an omnichannel strategy are:
1. Champion the customer
Customer journey mapping taps into customer data to accurately record each step of their journey, from the moment they become aware of their need, through research and consideration, to making a purchase and beyond. With an omnichannel strategy, you get closer to understanding how and why customers choose you. As such, you can anticipate their needs at every step of the journey and even personalise the experience to drive conversions and establish long-term loyalty.
2. Greater ability to deflect calls
Call deflection involves adopting an omnichannel strategy to handle simple enquiries outside of the call center, keeping your agents free for more complex customer enquiries. Call deflection isn’t about reducing call volumes – although less pressure on your call center is a benefit – it’s about strategically implementing it to enhance the customer experience. It enables customers to skip the queue and make use of other channels, on their terms.
3. Reduce costs and improve ROI
An omnichannel contact center strategy enables you to see where the customer experience is breaking down, or not delivering the results you want, to make incremental improvements. Furthermore, you can see which touchpoints perform exceptionally well to do more of what works for your customers. Overall, this will help you reduce costs and supercharge your ROI.
4. Gain a competitive advantage
Most of all, having a best-in-class omnichannel strategy in place gives you a competitive advantage. A seamless and consistent experience across all channels means you’re providing top-notch service, enabling customers to self-serve outside of working hours or when it suits them. Furthermore, it puts less pressure on your agents as they are dealing with fewer repetitive enquiries, leading to higher job satisfaction and lower attrition rates.
How Conversation Analytics can enhance an omnichannel strategy
A seamless and consistent experience across all channels will be reliant on contact centers having the right tools and technologies in place to offer amazing CX across all channels.
With Infinity’s Speech analytics suite, Conversation Analytics, you can evolve your tactics based on real data from your customers.
Being able to identify the finer points of conversation quickly and easily using call categorisation gives you the context and nuance that can be difficult to track when you’re handling high volumes of calls. Conversation Analytics tells you things such as:
Why people are getting in touch, by monitoring and logging the topics of conversation, including any associated keywords and phrases.
The outcome of each call, so you can surface trends from calls that delivered positive or successful outcomes.
How customer sentiment is changing throughout the call, so you can pinpoint exactly what makes the phone call experience positive or negative and improve from there.
Plus, Conversation Analytics integrates seamlessly with many contact center technologies and CRM systems. This means you can harness rich data automatically and gain visibility over the full picture, instead of small biased samples of calls.
Ready to boss omnichannel customer service in your call center?