Challenges of multi-channel customer service

More and more channels

Today’s customer expect that your company is reachable through multiple channels: phone, web, email are the minimum. Mobile applications are becoming a “must-have” in some segments (airlines, banks). (Shai’s recent post quoted some recent data backing this up.)  Twitter, Facebook and some form of real-time chat are gaining popularity. One thing is clear: It’s just going to get more complicated!

A growing challenge

This is a growing challenge for the customer service organization of any company. Not only must you create the organizational infrastructure to handle these channels, you have to make policies regarding them that take into account the strengths and weaknesses of each channel.

Channel hand-off is key

Another challenge is transferring people between channels at the right moments to make the most of each channel’s ability. Online self-serve interactions are by far the lowest cost to your company, but you certainly don’t want to lose a sale by locking someone into that channel or not providing an alternative when there is a bump in the road.

The “bump-in-the-road” situation is one of the major drivers of click-to-call and click-to-chat implementations. For example, they allow you to rescue purchases from becoming abandoned shopping carts. But only if the implementation is done right.

Fonolo’s approach to providing a mobile- and web-friendly interface for your call center is the easiest and most flexible way to achieve that smooth hand-off. We can handle hand-off between email and calls, and even between live chat and calls. (More on that later!)