When a contact center provides omnichannel customer service, it means they offer multiple support channels - like phone, chat, email, SMS, and social media - and that customers can move seamlessly across them within the same transaction. For example, a customer might initiate an online chat session to get an issue resolved. Midway through, she might decide that she really needs to have a phone conversation to explain the details of the issue. In an omnichannel scenario, the agent would be able to seamlessly elevate the chat interaction to a phone call so the customer doesn’t have to worry about calling back in and starting over with a different agent later.
Contrasting this to a non-omnichannel scenario, in which the customer has to disconnect the chat, manually call in, navigate the IVR, hope they reach the same agent – though let’s be realistic, they more than likely won’t – and then re-explain their issue to the new phone agent, it's easy to see why omnichannel yields a better experience. Customers recognize the value of omnichannel and our recent consumer benchmark survey revealed that 9 out of 10 people expect omnichannel service from companies.
Omnichannel routing enables contact centers to deliver on these expectations by routing contacts from all channels in a holistic and unified way. Omnichannel routing uses complex rules to determine the nature and priority of incoming contacts and then route them to the best available agent or places them in a queue if no agents are available. This results in a better customer experience and more efficient use of agent time and skills.
Contact centers that use omnichannel routing have unique capabilities. Here are some of the most noteworthy ones.