Customer journey mapping is vital to understand what your customers see and encounter. There are several pathways that lead into a business.
Any business with physical bricks and mortar that is visited by customers, will invest considerably in space, décor, cleaning, lighting and staff to present the business in the best possible light to impress its customers.
No business that expects to survive in the B2C or B2B space can do so without a strong focus on digital pathways. IT is well funded to provide web presence, SEO, apps, AI and social media. Add this all up and it probably exceeds the rent and cost of the reception part of the bricks and mortar.
However, while businesses tally the costs many fail to consider the voice channel which is equally as important and one of the most ignored pathways.
An analysis of five million calls on hold conducted by Captivate Connect on three continents shows call wait times of up to three hours. It may not be a surprise that the longest wait times were at a government department, however it was not uncommon to see wait times of 30 to 40 minutes at private businesses.
Businesses are thinking inside out. We spend billions on new IP phone systems and save trillions off telecoms bills by using data rather than PSDN or ISDN lines to make calls. However what price is a disgruntled caller worth? Is half the price of a coffee affordable?
Currently 80% of businesses use Interactive Voice Response (IVRs), including most contact centres. Yet research shows 67% of callers dislike the music and IVRs because of its inconvenience. Try pressing one for this or two for that from a mobile phone, it’s not easy.
With Gartner now proving over 50% of all calls are made from a handheld device, IVRs are becoming more impracticable for the customer.
Customers also need choice. The modern customer wants to choose their own music or play a quiz while they wait; they may even want to listen to a podcast or receive a brochure in their hand about information they are enquiring about.
In the Age of the Customer it is not just about empowering customers with new tech but easing customer frustration. We live in a world where we are constantly on fast forward and there is never enough time in the day to get through everything. By giving customers choice and variety while they wait on hold it allows the customer to book a call back, self-select their entertainment and gets your brand in their hand.
With new technology available after BroadSoft (owned by Cisco) and Captivate Connect’s collaboration, waiting callers now have control over what they do while they wait. Some may choose to listen to the advertising, some may choose the jukebox which allows them to select the type of music they want to hear. Others may select to play a game or quiz with the chance to win a prize or listen to a podcast while they wait.
Empowering waiting callers to self-select engages the callers, reduces perceived wait times and delivers a more purchase-ready prospect.