Are You Omnichannel, Multichannel, or Multimodal?


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You’ve probably been asked this before with all the omnichannel buzz in the CX industry. But do you honestly know the difference between multimodal, multichannel, and omnichannel?

A recent report by ContactBabel not only explains the difference, including pros and cons, but it also shows detailed research by contact center size and industry, giving you a peak at which verticals are embracing digital transformation and which are struggling to use CX as a competitive edge.

Here is some information from the ContactBabel report indicating how you can determine whether you are multimodal, multichannel, or omnichannel.

Multichannel: “We offer a choice of channels to customers (i.e., voice, email, social media, web chat, etc.), and they can use one channel in a single interaction. If they change channels, the context and history is lost.”

Multimodal: “We offer a choice of channels, and customers can use more than one in the same interaction (e.g., an agent can send an email or SMS to a customer while talking on the phone).”

Omnichannel: “We offer a choice of channels, and customers can use more than one over multiple interactions, while retaining the history and context of the original inquiry. Relevant information follows the customer across channels and interactions.”

Key findings from the report show that small companies are most likely to be omnichannel. This makes sense when you think about how it may be easier for a smaller center to go through a digital transformation using a cloud vendor. Some reasons why include fewer agents, the desire to develop customer relationships, less money to spend on capital expenditures, new contact centers with no prior legacy software to bring up to date, and the need to provide the same level of CX as larger companies.

Another key finding is that Technology, Media and Telecommunications (TMT), Outsourcing, and Finance were the top industries adopting omnichannel technology. You’ve probably heard about some great Fintech companies that are using digital to disrupt their industry and win over loyal customers with exceptional and user-friendly customer experience over mobile. For more on Fintech CX read our blog.

The lagging industries for adopting omnichannel were Insurance, and Travel and Hospitality. Although they are lagging, they may be the industries most in need of omnichannel communications, allowing customers to interact while traveling and on the go from their mobile devices. See how we recently partnered with a global unicorn travel agency to help them bring omnichannel customer service to their customers while on the go.

Now that you know the difference between multichannel, multimodal, and omnichannel, brush up on these other topics of interest, which are also included in the ContactBabel Report:

– The best channels based on the type of inquiry
– How to get from multichannel to omnichannel
– Top barriers to omnichannel
– Approaching the omnichannel challenge
– Anticipated changes in channels over the next 12 months
– Inbound interactions by channel

And more!

Interested in seeing more from the ContactBabel report? Download here.

Shelby Faris
As the Marketing Manager at Bright Pattern, my main goal is to increase awareness on the growing benefits of cloud-based technologies in the contact center industry.


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