Did you know that 61% of customers don’t like the traditional IVR (Interactive Voice Response) audio model?
Nobody likes lengthy phone prompts, and customers usually prefer to speak to a human. However, IVR is an efficient tool with benefits for both contact centers and customers when used correctly. IVR helps route customers to the right person to satisfy their needs, and with customers’ growing disdain for audio IVR, Visual IVR is fast becoming a standard for contact centers.
Visual IVR provides customer support through a visual interface, allowing customers to click or tap their preferred next step on a computer or mobile device. The click/tap option is less cognitively challenging than listening to a stream of options through audio IVR.
There’s a lot that goes into creating a Visual IVR, and it’s important to keep your customers’ experience in mind while doing so. User Experience (UX) is vital for Visual IVR — without it, you’ll have frustrated customers calling your contact center anyway.
Why Designing a Great Visual IVR is Important
Designing a strong Visual IVR is important for many reasons. Visual IVR has the capacity to ensure a consistent and efficient customer experience. By considering UX, you can ensure your Visual IVR is functional and doesn’t interfere with other customer support flows. Here are some tips to help you create a great Visual IVR:
1. Don’t just copy your voice IVR.
Creating a Visual IVR isn’t just repeating your old audio IVR script. You’re creating a different experience completely, and your customers will expect something different as well. Take the time to add a fresh take to your menu options, and think about how those options can better fit with your brand and customers’ needs.
2. Make sure your Visual IVR on-brand.
Your brand entails messaging, logos, color schemes, voice, and more. Essentially, your brand is your promise to your clients. All aspects of your business should incorporate your brand, from your customer service communications, web content, HTML stylings, email signatures, storefront, advertising, and more.
If your scheme is blue and white, make the menu options have blue writing on a white background. If your voice is laid back and friendly, make sure the copy in your IVR reflects that as well. Keeping brand in mind when creating a Visual IVR ensures your customers’ experience isn’t disjointed.
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3. Personalize your Visual IVR.
We already know that the top reason for customer frustration is not being able to get a human on the phone. As human beings, we value human experiences. Even though you can’t directly speak to a human through IVR, you can still have a personalized experience.
Consider personalizing your client’s experience by adding their name into the prompts wherever possible. Use customer data to tailor your menu options accordingly – this will make your customers feel valued. Don’t offer them options that are inconsistent with their purchase or interaction history.
4. Make it easy to find and use.
If it’s hard to find or use, customers won’t waste their time with it. A complicated Visual IVR will just increase customer frustration, prompting them to call your contact center instead. This can result in high call volumes and overwhelm for your agents, so it’s worth the effort to create an intuitive experience for your customers.
5. Ask the right questions to help call routing.
Optimize your routing and get your customers where they need to be by asking the right questions. Try to route them to their destination with descriptive menu options catered to their needs and previous interactions.
Another important question you should ask your customers is, “How was your experience?” At the end of the process, offer them a quick survey to show customers that you care about their feedback. This is also a great way to improve your IVR and customer satisfaction.
6. Don’t use it to block contact.
Visual IVR can be used for call deflection — but that doesn’t mean you should. While this tactic can be used to reduce call volume and inbound calls, it can often backfire, resulting in low customer satisfaction levels.
Rather than forcing your customers into your preferred channel, try meeting them at theirs. Optimizing your Visual IVR and other digital channels is a more sustainable way to attract and serve your digital-native customers without sacrificing customer experience for those who prefer the voice channel.
7. Offer customers a call-back.
When it comes to transitioning channels, most businesses with Visual IVR technology either offer a phone number for the customer to call or a call-back service. While both are valid options, call-backs are becoming more popular with customers.
Why? Because customers universally hate waiting on hold. By allowing them to schedule a call-back from a live-agent at a later time, you provide a valuable service that will save your customers precious minutes.
8. Test it (then re-test it!).
Test your Visual IVR technology from the back-end to make sure everything is functioning correctly before going public. This may seem basic, but the last thing you want is for your platform to crash, flooding your voice channel with concerned customers.
When piloting your Visual IVR, consider the customer perspective. Is it easy to locate on your website and/or app? Is it intuitive and easy to use? Can any of the processes be streamlined? Be sure to consider your most common customer questions – this can help you anticipate which paths your customers are most likely to take. This way, you can easily identify glitches or inconsistencies and optimize the flow as needed.