Multi-channel Communications

How Can I Effectively Manage Multi-channel Interactions?

Beleaguered contact centre managers are continuously juggling service levels across five or six different channels, and developing a multi-channel strategy. However, to effectively manage you need omni-channel communication with your customers.

In real time all channels, regardless of how many there are, should be treated as a single, unified way of allowing businesses and customers to communicate with each other with the same high level of service and knowledge.

What’s your Channel Strategy?

Customers are more demanding than ever and want to be unique, social and served anytime, anywhere, anyhow – on their terms. Companies need to create a customer interaction fabric that can flex around the customer and provide the right service, at the right time, in the right way.

Benefits

  • Have a 360 degree view of the customer channel analytics for continuing service improvements
  • Staff attrition is eased by multi-media blending, as agents find that their work is more varied and interesting
  • Multi-channel customers spend 20-30% more than single channel customers; going multi-channel can directly impact your bottom line

A Multi-Channel Approach

In a recent survey carried out by Enghouse Interactive, email was the preferred method of business engagement overall, with nearly half of respondents (46%) referencing it; almost 12 times the proportion citing social media (4%).

Read our latest Consumer Research to learn more.

Socia Media

Frequently Asked Questions about Multi-channel Strategy

It’s clear that organisations today need to provide a multi-channel approach and a broad range of different communications and interaction options to meet the preferences of all kinds of customers – from self-service to traditional voice calls.

To take full advantage of this, organisations also need to be able to track customers across all interaction channels,enabling them to achieve a singular holistic view of each customer –an omni-channel view – and deliver a seamless customer experience.

Research has shown that staff attrition is eased by multi-media blending, as agents find that their work is more varied and interesting. Yet many organisations are concerned they do not have the skills and experience to support non-voice channels. Although each media requires a different approach, there are plenty of tools available, including templated responses, skills-based routing, workforce management and in-call data, to ensure agents respond knowledgeably.

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In many organisations each channel has been added and managed separately resulting in silos of interactions and data that cannot be accessed by the rest of the contact centre. At the heart of a successful multichannel contact centre solution is the universal queue, which is able to receive, analyse, queue and route interactions to the correct agent or group. This is complemented by a single knowledge base which incorporates customer data including any past interactions that they may have had with the business, regardless of channel. This 360 degree view of the customer enables cross channel analytics for continuing service improvements.

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Despite the very low levels of customer interactions via social media (just 0.7% of inbound traffic), the extremely high profile nature of this channel and its potential to have a far-reaching, negative affect on brand, means it is viewed as far more important than the statistics suggest. However it was clear from our recent report that the level of enthusiasm is linked to the sector the contact centre serves.

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Recognising that satisfying the demands of today’s highly connected consumers requires a strong commitment to the omni-channel — enabling customers to interact with their brands anytime, anywhere, and from any device. Download the latest report from Call Centre IQ, sponsored by Enghouse Interactive, to understand the omni-channel market place and learn more about the omni-channel customer.

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Enghouse Interactive Multi-channel Capabilities

Enghouse Interactive multi-channel contact centre capabilities – from voice, email, webchat, social media, video and SMS – are seamlessly connecting businesses of all sizes to their customers.

Enghouse Interactive multichannel contact centre capabilities from voice, email, webchat, social media, video, SMS are seamlessly connecting businesses of all sizes to their customers.

Many customers prefer to communicate by email. It offers the advantage of a clear audit trail, with time/date stamp evidence. Now you can give emails the attention they deserve with intelligent email queuing, predefined reply templates, skills-based routing and more.

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Faxing is still alive and well in many industries. Fax queuing improves the access, control and security of fax communications, plus there’s no need for paper archiving – all faxes are converted into images for easy storage.

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Online customers can request a text chat with the individual or department who’s best-equipped to help. Alternatively, they can simply click on an icon to request a callback from an agent.

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Online customers can also simply click on an icon to request a callback from an agent, reducing customer frustration by making the process effortless for the customer.

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Social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter let your customers share their opinion and experiences with their friends / followers. Find and respond to social media conversations related to your brand or organisation, recognize and reward positive comments and efficiently manage negative comments before they can do any real harm. Now it’s easy to monitor activity and respond appropriately.

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Text messages are handy for appointment reminders, competitions, promotions and surveys. Your contact centre can be optimised to send and receive SMS communications efficiently.

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The technology is available for you to communicate with your customers face to face. Video chat allows companies to re-create the in-store or personalised experience in a way that’s convenient for the customer.

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"Today, we deliver a capability which includes phone-based support, email, text messaging service, web chat, Council voicemail, fax and the scanning of letters for electronic distribution by Cardiff Council agents. By linking all these communication channels together through Contact Center: Enterprise, we now have a comprehensive view of the services our citizens are requesting, as well as the channels they are using to access those services."

− Cardiff Council