Want to improve caller experience and customer satisfaction? Start by fixing your IVR system and making it more user-friendly. Here are 8 helpful tips to help you redesign your automated system and improve customer interaction.
Designing a Customer-Focused IVR System
IVR technology, or an interactive voice response system is an automated voice system used by businesses. This system interacts with callers before an employee does. It provides company information, identifies the purpose of the call, assists callers with possible solutions, and transfers calls to agents when needed. And by doing these tasks, it helps create a more organized and well-functioning communication system.
1. Offer 24/7 Customer Support
Your IVR system should always be open for business. That is to say, aim to provide 24/7 customer service with a well-executed IVR. Use prerecorded messages to provide support, instructions, and troubleshooting help. Offer basic information and answers to simple inquiries such as:
- Company information (store hours, location, directory)
- Product descriptions
- Account balances
- Shipping information, and so on
This way, even during off-hours and on the weekends, callers can get help for simple, basic concerns.
2. Use Voicemail and Callback Features
Part of providing 24/7 customer service is offering a callback option in the event callers are unable to resolve their call. This is helpful during heavy traffic situations, after-hours, and over the weekends. Create personalized voicemail messages for these types of situations and have the IVR system forward the call to voicemail. This way, they can leave a voicemail and wait for a call back from your business.
3. Avoid Providing Too Many Options
Too many options and overly-detailed prompts may lead to confusion and more misplaced calls. If there is too much to choose from, callers may not know what to choose and may select the wrong option. This leads to frustration and an unresolved call. Provide only the necessary options and details. Additionally, keep the language and easy-to-understand; avoid overuse of technical terminology and jargon.
4. Simplify Categories
Keep your IVR system structure simple. When you map out your IVR strategy, consider the main categories you want to provide help and information for. Under each category, try to stick to 4-5 options. Add a “Press # to hear these options again” button so that callers can hear the options again.
5. Use Human Voices
Callers connecting with a business are generally doing so to get a problem resolved. And they typically want to talk to a human representative immediately. Interacting heavily with a robotic automated voice may create some frustration in the mind of the caller, especially if they cannot find the right menu option or solution.
Most IVR service providers will allow you to upload voice recordings of your choice. Here is an opportunity to add a more human touch to your IVR system. It may not be possible to implement this at every step of the IVR, but try to do so whenever you can.
6. Pay Attention to Customer Concerns
An IVR system that provides irrelevant options or information is not useful to a caller looking for specific help. For this reason, it is important to be able to predict customer concerns and what they would be calling about. Watch what your competitors are doing. Conduct market research. Collect feedback from current customers. All of this will help you identify common issues and questions that you can include and target in your IVR system.
7. Cater to Your Audience
Depending on the type of business you run and the demographic you cover, you may want to consider a multilingual IVR. This will help with the different markets you want to target as you are providing a way for them to connect with your business. Make sure you have agents who speak those languages on the team as well so that your callers are fully satisfied.
8. Ask for Feedback
Finally, get feedback on your IVR system. After building and updating the system, you need to know how it is working. Ask your callers if they’d be willing to take a quick IVR survey. This could be a phone survey or a followup email or text message that they can complete on their own time. The point is to study how customers are interacting with the IVR and if improvements need to be made.
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