Successful Companies Use 34% More Customer Interaction Channels

Successful Companies Use 34% More Customer Interaction Channels

Few companies run a voice-only contact center anymore. On average, they use five types of interaction channels, according to Nemertes’ 2019-20 Intelligent Customer Engagement research study of 518 companies.

That’s great, but which channels are the best to use, particularly in the rapidly changing world of Digital Customer Experience, (DCX), where 60.8% of organizations are using or plan to augment these interactions with Artificial Intelligence, (AI)?

Here is some research backed guidance, generated from Nemertes Success Group research model. We asked companies that are using AI for DCX if they measure their success in any of three areas: Increased revenue, decreased cost, and/or improved customer ratings. Among nearly two thirds that did, the top half within each size band (small, medium, large) was placed into a “success group.”

So what do successful companies do when it comes to interaction channels? Here are some of the key findings:

  • Successful companies have 6.7 interaction channels, vs. 5.0 for all other companies.
  • The top channels by 2020 will be voice, mobile business chat, and email among the success group (in that order). Among all others: Email, voice, and SMS (in that order).
  • The success group is rapidly adopting all channels, though. In addition to the top three, high percentages (75%+) also are adopting social media, webchat, SMS, video and in-app connections.
  • When it comes to mobile business chat, Facebook Messenger is the most widely used now, and will be by 2020, as well. But 79% of the success group will have it adopted by 2020, vs. only 49.8% of all other companies. WhatsApp, Apple Business Chat, and WeChat also will be adopted by more than 50% of the success group  by the end of 2020.

The bottom line: Offer customers multiple ways to communicate by adding new channels. But don’t just add channels without integrating them. Make sure to use omnichannel to ensure agents can see a single screen view for all communications regardless of channel or data. Nearly all contact center vendors offer omnichannel, but some are starting to provide better integration with emerging digital channels and AI. Check out differences in definitions and execution between Avaya, Cisco, Five9, Genesys, Mitel, RingCentral, and Serenova, to name a few.

Keep in mind that leveraging AI in the channels where it makes sense for your organization will result in measurable success in revenue, cost, and customer ratings. We have the data to prove it! See the study here.