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Blog

Sep 23, 2014

3 Consumer Driven Changes Coming to Your Contact Center

As they walk the aisle of a supermarket and consider grabbing an item from the shelf, today’s consumers may want to first reach out and ask the brand about that product.

“Are there some good recipe suggestions for this?”

“Does this product have gluten?”

“Can I have a coupon?”

In fact, a study indicated that 58 percent of mobile phone users would send a text message to a company’s contact center to request more information. For brands, this means their contact centers will have unprecedented access to consumers, just as the consumer is about to purchase. And in our go-go world, consumers are conditioned to expect answers right away.

All of this signals three big consumer-driven changes coming to the contact center.

1. What Consumers Will Want to Know

Today’s contact center agents may be assigned to work in a certain communication channel based on their talents. They might be categorized as being strong with e-mails, text messages or phone calls.

In a future contact center, however, more agents will be interacting with consumers who will have questions just before making a purchase decision. So they will need information such as a product’s marketing messages, ingredients and recommended uses.

That’s a lot to remember. A fast, accurate knowledge management system, like Astute Knowledge™ Agent Assist, will be vital. Our natural language technology will increase the speed of the conversation even more, as agents will be able to ask for what they need instead of searching for it, with the confidence that they will receive the best answer.

2. More Contacts from Consumers

So contact center agents will be helping consumers make the right purchase. Consumers will appreciate this, reach out again, and drive heavier volumes in contact centers. But instead of more traffic coming in after consumers have purchased, it will be coming in as consumers are making the purchase.

This changes the type of information that must be on hand in the contact center. To empower agents to become more proactive, contact center managers will need to train and equip their agents not only for complaint resolution, but also with information that will drive sales.

3. Happy Customers, Happy Agents

Another change that’s coming to the contact center? Those same agents that are driving sales will be much happier and stay on the job longer.

Turnover has long been a problem in this field. Total average turnover among all call centers is 33 percent, and outsourced contact centers average 55 percent turnover.

But when agents transform from spending most of their time receiving complaints, to helping to drive sales, you will inevitably see a rise in employee engagement levels too.

And that’s good news for contact center managers.

Contact Astute Solutions to learn more about making your contact center a place where customers want to connect with your brand.

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