10 ways IVR can improve the customer experience

10 ways IVR can improve the customer experience

IVR is the abbreviation for interactive voice response, but the first two letters could also signify an injection of new life into your customers’ experience – as in a medical IV.  How are your customers going to connect with a well-designed IVR system? Let us count the ways:

1. Efficient Call Routing

The built-in call control features of IVR gather the information from the caller and efficiently route the call to self-service steps or to the call center rep already designated to handle the specific problem or question.

2. Automated Self-Service

Customers avoid the ten-minute “elevator-music” experience waiting for the next live representative. Many callers can have their problem or question taken care of after a brief automated visit, for example, to check on an order status or account credit.

3. Faster Access and Service

Customer speech recognition software is more sophisticated than ever. Combined with “directed speech” and button pushing, IVR systems can get the customer to where the call needs to go faster.

4. Easy Menu Options

The days of “If you [need such and such] press or say 1. Otherwise press or say 0 and we’ll take you back to the main menu so you can start all over again” are long past. Thoughtfully designed menu trees keep the customers out of the dreaded mazes and labyrinths of sub-menus and sub-sub-options.

5. Advanced Speech Recognition

IVR recognizes more than just single words. The caller can say specifically what type of service or problem prompted the call for a fast track to the solution or prompts for additional information.

6. Personalized Caller Information

Well-designed IVR can often provide the same quality service as a well-trained call center rep. The perception of quality is all about personalized service. IVR systems that tap into customer data make each incoming call a quality customer experience.

7. Always Available Service

With IVR, customers can be served on their schedule. Lunch breaks and normal business hours notwithstanding, the IVR is on duty 24/7.

8. Professional Service

Professionally designed IVR systems that use trained speakers inspire confidence and make the small company appear larger. Sound-studio quality voiceovers give customers the impression that they are dealing with a big-time operation.

9. Reduce Hold Times

Customers are willing to endure – and sometimes grudgingly expect – more wait time when their problem or need can only be resolved by the company they are calling. Well-designed IVR can remove or reduce the wait time and get to the problem quicker. The customer, who began the call feeling anxious or dissatisfied, quickly becomes relieved and pleasantly surprised – i.e., satisfied.

10. Personalized Offers

Customers can learn of special offers, upcoming sales or product enhancements while using IVR. Perhaps the caller was wondering whether that aging product that just blew a gasket might have an upgraded replacement that made the gasket obsolete. IVR can be programmed to address the customer’s potential need.

Want to learn more about IVR and how this great technology can free up your people and unclog your customer’s access to your products and services? Contact us and we’ll show you how to improve your customers’ experience in so many ways.