Last year, changes in the customer service landscape, such as virtual agents and cloud integration, emerged as major trends among call centers.
This year, call centers are focusing more on strategic thinking, which has translated to more insightful analyses of analytics, more intentional conversations, and more thoughtful ways of incorporating artificial intelligence (AI). To help your call center stay up-to-date, here are the most influential call center software trends of 2019.
AI and customer service
More and more businesses are turning to AI to help create a seamless experience across multiple channels for both customers and agents.
Studies on customer satisfaction have revealed that customers prefer self-service options that do not undermine customer support. Since customers favor self-service but tend to avoid rigid, old systems, natural language processing and interactive voice response systems (IVRs) can provide effortless experiences for customers.
Modern IVRs operate by gathering data from customers, rather than placing them into a queue. AI has the ability to identify words and tone, offering each customer a personalized experience. IVRs utilize previous customer interaction histories to route customers as needed, reducing effort among customers and agents.
In 2019, AI applications for call routing will become more widely applied by businesses. In addition, experts suggest working toward forming connections between omnichannel communications and streamlined call center response. Investing in call center tracking software can benefit your business by providing more engaging and efficient customer communications.
Widespread cloud-based communications
Many businesses have already integrated cloud communications into their business model, but cloud-based communication is becoming especially crucial for call centers. As a result, more call centers are using cloud communications and cloud-based software to build remote offices and hire remote agents.
Traditional call center locations are becoming obsolete, as real-time messaging and cloud-based call centers allow agents to interact with customers in the same way they would from a real-life office.
Cloud-based call centers are important for reducing overhead costs and in-house staff. In addition, hiring for virtual call centers is not confined to a specific location. Therefore, you can hire the best remote agents for your call center, rather than just the employees who live near the office. Additionally, hiring remote call center agents allows you to offer more flexible working hours, as well as time zone flexibility.
Cloud-based call center software can help you grow your existing workforce to take on new locations as the market requires. And it can also help you build completely remote teams.
Offering communication across multiple channels provides customers with a seamless experience across every device. Ensuring that contact is consistent across desktops, mobile devices, and telephones can help boost customer satisfaction while expanding your current customer base.
In fact, research has shown that companies offering strong omnichannel customer interactions retain 89 percent of their customers. Meanwhile, companies with inconsistent or weak omnichannel engagement only retain 33 percent. Omnichannel communications facilitate navigation throughout your call center.
Customers become frustrated when they have to repeat their issues multiple times. Instead, they want agents to know their history and efficiently resolve their issues. Agents with access to previous customer interactions across every channel are able to provide exceptional customer service and work more productively.
Staying up-to-date with the latest trends in call center software can benefit your business by giving you an edge over competition. Integrating cloud-based communications, offering omnichannel interactions, and incorporating artificial intelligence into your customer service model are great ways to follow the latest trends.
In turn, staying updated will help your business grow by boosting customer satisfaction and expanding your customer base.