Customers now expect to receive service from your organisation on the channel of their choice, which might be voice, email, SMS/text, web, mobile or social media. Companies are beginning to provide service on all of these channels – but too often, those channels may exist in silos. This multi-channel service can be taken to the next level with an omni-channel solution that integrates channels to provide a consistent customer experience.
What is Omni-Channel Customer Self-Service?
Customers don’t think in terms of channels – they think in terms of finding an answer to their question or a solution to their problem. They may reach out via voice, your mobile website or over a social media channel like Twitter. As more consumers adopt mobile devices, the lines between channels can blur – and customer expectations for ease of starting a conversation in one channel, then continuing in another, become even higher.
Where multi-channel self-service may have served the customer on more than one channel, it may not have integrated those channels; for example, a bank customer might be able to check their account balance, and transfer funds via text message in a dialog very similar to how they would perform the same tasks via IVR or mobile web.
Omni-channel self-service empowers the customer to start an activity in one channel, and seamlessly transition to another. A conversation that begins on Twitter can be continued via text message or phone call with all of the relevant context preserved across channels. Omni-channel solutions don’t require implementing every possible channel – for example, after a survey of customer preferences, a business may choose to offer voice, SMS and social media as service channels – but an omni-channel solution ensures the service level, responsiveness, and quality of service received on individual channels and across channels would be equally high.
Omni-channel capabilities are particularly relevant in the mobile context – the mobile customer is used to carrying on dialogs via text, voice, social and instant-messaging channels, and having constant access to information. Currently, more than half of all mobile subscribers in the US own a smartphone and 80% of new mobile buyers opt for smartphones, according to Nielsen and Pew Research Centre studies. When companies leverage and integrate these channels, the customer then has a seamless experience in the palm of their hand.
Omni-Channel Customer Self-Service and Aspect
As a leader in providing solutions for mobile customer self-service, Aspect has deep expertise in thinking about the customer experience in terms of the conversation, not the channel. Our suite of offerings makes us uniquely qualified to integrate self-service solutions and the contact centre, allowing companies to seamlessly bridge the gap between self-service and live agents.
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