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Inbound Voice still the Number 1 choice in customer communication

Inbound Voice still the Number 1 choice in customer communication

The following blog findings are taken from a research based survey carried out by BT partners Davies Hickman of 6,000 consumers across twelve countries – Australia, Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Netherlands, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, the UK and the USA – in August 2019.

Today’s customers are informed and highly Tech Savy individuals who prefer easy interactions. The general feeling is that not enough companies are investing in AI to assist and improve transactions with their companies. 

Telephone communications is still the favourite channel closely followed by email, younger consumers tend to prefer messaging. Social media is not popular for service issues.

Consumer expectation is that interactions should be personalised, convenient and seamless. There is a general understanding that AI can assist in enhancing that experience. AI could help businesses be more proactive, streamlining processes, preventing problems and assisting in providing customers with timely information.

For businesses there is no quick solution, choosing the right channels and the right strategy for your company must be approached with careful consideration for your customer experience and their whole journey with your contact centre. 

What’s clear is that introducing one channel doesn’t replace another. 

The more channels you add the more customers will engage with you and in some cases they will use multiple channels at the same time. Businesses who choose to have no contact number for their customers are likely to be missing out on opportunities and are likely creating a negative perception. Consumer expectation is now leaning far more towards A.I automation processes to be in place to improve Voice services as a whole.

More people than ever chose to phone a contact centre and speak to an agent. Three in four people called a contact centre in the last 12 months which makes voice calls the most used channel. Research suggests that when things are going wrong people still want to speak to another human being and this is not just the older generation – top callers are actually aged between 25 and 34 years of age.

8 in 10 customers have the expectation that organisations should be using AI for transformational proactive notifications. As many as 41% reported they had stopped using two or more brands because the customer service levels they experienced were so poor. Only 21% reported that the digital experience (customer journey) of large companies was excellent. 


Digital Channel findings – understanding key trends

Voice

• 74% of respondents phoned a contact centre last year (64% in 2015).

• 53% say agents often don’t know whats on their website (59% in 2017).

• 81% think human agents should check the more complicated responses of chatbots (74% in 2017).

• 80% of respondents expect organisations to use AI and automated voice services to answer simple customer queries (67% in 2017).

 

Messaging

• 58% reported that being able to see a screen makes webchat more useful (49% in 2015.)

• 55% like webchat because they have a record of the conversation to refer back to (48% in 2015).

• 47% of 16-34 year olds would be happy making a secure payment over webchat or messaging.

• 48% prefer to use webchat as opposed to the phone to contact an organisation when they are on their website.

 

Social Media & Video

• 29% of people used social media to get customer service from a company down from 38% in 2017.

• 57% say they get ideas for buying new products and services from social media channels.

• 39% use social media to read other people’s comments about brands products and services.

Trusted technology

• 60% say it takes too long to identify them when they phone call centres.

• 81% would like voice biometrics for identification and verification (ID&V)

• 67% say they are often asked to repeat their account details on the same call which is irritating.

• 50% would have bought more over the phone if payments were secure.

Outbound Care

• 87% want to be informed when there is a problem with their product or service.

• 82% say it would be good if organisations used AI to monitor the conditions of products and services.

 

At 08UK it certainly comes as no surprise that inbound voice consumers still have the expectation that your company should have a business phone number. 

The feedback we generally receive is how can a company not provide a phone number to be contacted on?  & Frankly how is that acceptable? 

Well judging by the findings in this report it is clear to see not providing a phone number and expecting your customers to email you simply isn’t okay.

Perhaps you require a virtual cloud business phone number for your company that routes to your mobile or landline number?

We can implement a simple or complex IVR with menu options for various teams/departments within your team / organisation (Press 1 for Sales, 2 for accounts, 3 for Support etc).

Why not think about getting a memorable good-looking Gold / platinum freephone number that your consumers will remember. We have a fantastic selection of 03, 080, 084, 087 and 01/02 numbers available and can be live to you today.

Click here to search the most memorable Gold Numbers available in the UK today.

 

If you would like to talk to one of our team to get any point clarifying please do not hesitate to contact us. Call us now on 0800 692 7000 or email new@08uk.co.uk so we can call you back.

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