The phone channel still has a lot to offer in the age of digital service – here’s why you shouldn’t abandon calls in the transition to digital.
A sentiment that you’ve probably heard over and over again when it comes to customer service: “digital is king.” In many ways, it’s true – over 80% of customers are already near or on a screen when they begin their customer service journey with you, and people using digital banking as their primary means of financial management is growing steadily year after year. With all this focus towards online service, it may tempt the thought of “do I still need to support phone calls?”
It may feel like with the way things are going, replacing your call center entirely with online chat may seem like the right move: why bother maintaining a phone system when you can go entirely digital (where the majority of my customers are starting off anyways)? However, this line of thinking misses one important fact: phone lines are still as busy as ever, and they’re busy for a good reason. Read on to remind yourself why you shouldn’t throw in the towel on phone calls.
1. Voice is Preferred for More Complex Issues
When you just want to ask a quick, easy question like ‘what’s my balance?’ or ‘what are your branch hours?’, text-based online chat is the easiest way to get an answer fast. When you have a complicated question you want to ask, however, it’s usually much easier to explain your problem with voice rather than typing it all out. Responses flow more naturally through a phone conversation, with a more rapid back-and-forth that gets customers in and out of the interaction faster.
Furthermore, if you have an urgent or stressful need then you’re much more likely to want to speak to a real person. Having that human connection available in an easy, recognizable channel provides a level of comfort for users that would otherwise be missing without it.
2. Don’t Put All Your Eggs in One Basket
It’s never a good idea to give your users only one platform to reach you on. This invites the possibility of customers not being able to reach you at all, should this platform become unavailable for any reason. What if a user can’t reach their computer or access the internet? What if a problem occurs on your website that sends it down? If a user is having an urgent financial emergency that needs attention and one of these issues crops up, they may find themselves with no way to contact you and have a stressful, negative experience as a result. Phone lines should be operated to provide a potential secondary means of reaching out to customer support in the event of such an emergency.
3. Technology Can Bring Phone Calls to the Next Level
Phones may have an association with customer service of the past, seen as low-tech when compared to other options such as SMS and chat, but that doesn’t have to be the case. There are solutions available that can bring all the benefits of digital service into your phone system. You don’t have to choose between the personal, familiar method of phone service and more advanced features such as CoBrowsing available online: both can be brought together by a Digital Customer Service (DCS) platform that brings the best of both worlds together.
Many legacy telephony systems are beginning to show their age through a lack of advanced features that users are expecting. These outdated solutions are trapping your CX in an aging silo with no clear path forwards towards modern advancements. Check out our new whitepaper for 6 major reasons why you need to modernize your call center.