Monica Ellis of West Unified Communications introduces us to her preferred approach to omnichannel digital transformation.
Retailers today have a challenging goal: omnichannel digital transformation.
Not too long ago, retailers considered digital transformation to be the shift from bricks and mortar to online. In this era of unified communications, digital transformation is more about the alignment of customer experience goals to an omnichannel effort.
A US-based jeweller partnered with West to begin their digital transformation. Using customer data they’d been collecting for years, they were finally able to put the data to work by creating timely, personalised communications that compelled action. The new process provided an improved customer experience and resulted increased sales. Watch the video below to see how they did it.
Strengthening Customer Connections With Omnichannel Communications
Omnichannel broadens the discussion beyond whether you are meeting your customers in store or on an ecommerce site. Unified communications – one of the best platforms ever applied to retail – enables businesses to connect with customers via chat, text, video conference, email, co-browsing, and more. These two-way, real-time, interactive dialogues can occur anywhere, anytime on any device. And retailers have to be able to navigate easily among them.
Luckily for retailers, especially those with fewer resources, the barriers to entry for omnichannel unified communications have been lowered. Contact centres, with the gamut of collaboration features from basic messaging all the way to screen sharing, are cost-efficient for businesses of all sizes. The smallest of retailers can make the biggest impact with the right combination of customer interaction channels.
Unified Communications Allows Retailers to Get Proactive in Customer Service
With this level playing field – supported by cloud-based platforms and strong underlying networks – retailers can make the most of their resources. Unified communications helps businesses ensure that high-value employees conduct high-value transactions, rather than being consumed with low-level or time-wasting tasks.
For instance, a sophisticated contact centre application enables a retailer to instantly be alerted when a customer complains about the brand, an experience, or product/service on social media. A contact centre agent can immediately connect with the customer via the customer’s preferred communication channel armed with pertinent information such as the social media post, customer purchase history, and product information.
If it’s a technology concern, the retailer can proactively connect the customer with a technician who also has direct access to this information and can assist without the customer having to bring the tech up to speed. Customers can escalate requests without having to repeat themselves over and over to each person they encounter.
Sales, marketing, engineering, customer service and other high-value employees who interact with customers can use rich media solutions to have a more impactful interaction. Features such as on-screen annotation, conferencing and collaboration allow retailers to draw in resources – human and automated – as needed to enhance and reinforce the customer relationship.
Take, for example, a high-end jewellery store that wants to tap into the opportunity that exists for men buying last-minute anniversary presents.
Using a contact centre application, the retailer can automatically send a text to a customer in the database near his anniversary. Embedded in the text is the capability to browse targeted product suggestions gleaned from past purchase history or other information in the customer’s profile.
The customer also would have the option to chat with a sales associate or search for the closest location. That store’s staff could receive an alert that the customer was coming in and what products he already browsed online. The seamless integration of multiple channels promotes increased revenue by improving the customer experience – not only by selling products at lower prices.