Have you ever been in a retail store, restaurant or doctor’s office waiting in line to check out and the cashier picks up a phone call while you wait? If so, then you know how frustrating it is to have a phone call “cut in line”. After all, you went to the effort of driving to the location and waiting in line. How is this person calling in on the phone suddenly more important than you?!!
As a consumer this drives a negative customer experience that may influence your shopping habits as well as which companies and services providers you choose. In an article from the NY Times they sited that “Americans spend roughly 37 billion hours each year waiting in line. The dominant cost of waiting is an emotional one: stress, boredom, that nagging sensation that one’s life is slipping away. The last thing we want to do with our dwindling leisure time is squander it in stasis.”
So the $37B dollar question is why do retailers, restaurants and medical service providers allow and enable this to happen. Do they not care that 66% of consumers switch brands based on a poor customer experience? This author believes they do care and they do want to drive a better customer experience but they don’t have the technology and tools to allow them to make a change. The reality is they want to serve all their customers both in the store, on the phone, on social media, email, chat or the like but they need technology that allows them to do so in a non-disruptive fashion. Enter the cloud based voice and contact center players like EarthLink.
With a network based service that provides functionality that will route calls to available personnel across multiple locations and provide notification and reporting of missed calls to IP Phones, smartphones or via a web portal these service providers now have the tools to manage calls to a store in a variety of ways that are less intrusive to their in store clients. Additionally through contact center functionality they can enable a “call back” option for clients who don’t want to wait on the phone for someone to pick up as well as multiple methods of contact such as email and chat in addition to voice.
As a technologist and a consumer who likes face to face interaction as well as the convenience of remote contact options I applaud the businesses who have taken the time and effort to map out their customer communication strategy. At the end of the day we want the same thing a great customer experience!
Make sure your customers are not feeling frustrated when the phone rings and someone jumps in front of them with a hosted voice solution and learn more here.