Today’s customer service landscape is more complex than ever, with customers interacting with businesses in various ways: social media, chatbots, interactive voice response (IVR), and web support are just a few of the relevant channels and touchpoints in a robust customer experience management strategy.
To provide the best possible customer experience, businesses need to provide self-service options tailored to their customers. These experiences are a great way to augment customer service. Companies can drive greater customer satisfaction and divert more calls from reaching customer service agents. Broad use of digital self-service can free up their customer service representatives to focus on more complex tasks and issues.
The reality of CX automation is that there are many ways to deliver the digital self-service option to customers. This post will focus on delivering it as an option in your company’s interactive voice response scripts when people make inbound calls to your call center/contact center team.
Interactive voice response and digital self-service apps
A digital self-service app is a computer/smartphone application that allows a customer to interact with a company without human customer support assistance. This type of app is becoming more and more popular, as it enables customers to take care of their business without ever having to speak to a real person.
IVRs are often used to provide customer service. For example, a customer might call an airline to change their flight reservation. They would be routed through the airline’s IVR, which would allow them to change their reservation without ever having to speak to a human being.
Digital self-service and interactive voice response (IVR) apps are critical for automating customer service for consumers. In a world where the majority of people prefer to resolve customer service issues on their own, businesses need to provide easy and convenient ways for customers to get help. IVR and visual digital self-service apps allow the customer (and potential customer) to quickly and easily find the information they need without waiting on hold or speaking to a representative. These apps also empower customers by giving them greater control over their business interactions.
While IVR can be a digital self-service experience itself, many businesses have evolved the way they use the term “digital self-service” to refer to web-based text and visual applications that divert the customer journey from human interactions. These applications can be both an alternative to continued audio IVR interaction or an option to be provided in an IVR interaction to speed issue resolution for the customer. They can be integrated as part of account support or technical support interactions.
Companies increasingly understand that finding alternatives to audio-only IVR is critical to their overall customer satisfaction levels. A 2019 customer satisfaction feedback study of over 2000 respondents conducted by Vonage showed:
- 61% of consumers said IVR makes for a poor customer experience
- 467% say that they feel frustrated when they call a company and get an IVR
- 50%+ report abandoning a business relationship because of complex IVR menus
Further, respondents listed their top six complaints as:
- 65% said, “The reason I’m calling for might not be specifically listed”
- 63% said, “I am forced to listen to irrelevant options”
- 54% said, “It keeps me from getting through to a live person”
- 46% said, “The menus are too long”
- 45% said, “I often must repeat myself”
Naturally, many customers here are reacting to BAD IVR, but it’s important to remember that poor IVR experiences with other companies impact the receptivity of your customers to automated audio support. Well-designed digital self-service interactions can change the dynamics here for the better. Some believe that digital self-service is critical to growing customer loyalty in today’s environment.
How interactive voice response can benefit from digital self-service apps
Nowadays, customers want to interact with businesses in the most convenient way for them. As a result, many companies now offer a panoply of connection points including phone, email, chat, and social media. To provide the best possible customer experience, businesses are using a mix of these channels to communicate with their customers. However, not all customer service channels are created equal. Some channels are more efficient and effective than others at resolving customer issues.
With visual IVR digital customer experience options, customers can be given a chance to receive a link to a micro-app on their smartphone that specifically addresses their needs. Instead of relying on voice menus and experiences, customers can be directed to forms and other digital experiences that make quick work of their requests. These visual workflows can deliver a real, immersive experience for the customer that dramatically increases success rates.
The FICX No-Code CX Automation Platform provides a clear example of how such an experience can work. The reality is that anyone can create a secure, branded experience without coding using our drag-and-drop interface. Pre-built integrations with existing internal infrastructure and systems simplify and speed the connection process. Then, the experience can be delivered to the customer in any digital channel or touchpoint via a short link or a web service. In the context of IVR, the audio menu can ask the user if they would like to receive a form to fill out on their smartphone instead of waiting for a live agent. Clicking on the link in their SMS or communication appl redirects the user to a secure form.
Digital self-service experiences can take pressure off your live support team. Increasingly, companies are developing single use-case digital self-service experiences that provide fast resolution for customer issues and inbound call volume. These experiences are often form-based but can also employ conversational artificial intelligence (AI). Such microapps can be an integral part of delivering augmented customer service.
At FICX, we call those micro-apps. Micro-apps offer a more direct customer experience than the multifaceted apps and customer portals favored by some businesses. While major apps can provide customers with a broad range of available services, users sometimes avoid them because they feel too complex and time-consuming.
While simple use cases are great for digital self-service customer success, so too can be more complex needs if a well-designed experience can be devised to guide users to answers quickly and efficiently. The key is distilling the customer experience down to its productive essence.
This article discussed how Interactive Voice Response (IVR) can benefit from digital self-service apps. By providing a digital self-service option, customers can resolve common issues without speaking to a customer service representative. This can save time and improve customer satisfaction.
Interactive voice response (IVR) is a great way to provide customer service over the phone. However, many customers find the process frustrating and confusing. A digital self-service app can provide an easier way for customers to get the information they need. Whether the caller in question is looking for support or simply trying to do online shopping, that’s true.
As you consider your options for deploying digital self-service in your IVR workflows, please consider the FICX No-Code CX Automation Platform. FICX is a true pioneer in CX automation, making it easy to deliver a digital self-service experience without coding resources. FICX apps are frequently used to upgrade IVR and the phone automation systems produced by many other companies. We help companies enhance agent productivity while delivering higher customer satisfaction. Our robust technology enables anyone to quickly develop a secure digital customer experience and deploy it as part of an IVR workflow and any other customer touchpoint.
For more information, visit www.ficx.com.