9 Factors to Consider While Choosing a Cloud Service Provider
Many businesses have started using cloud telephony software for enhanced communication with customers. It not only improves business communication but also offers a great customer experience, which is one of the biggest competitive advantages. As we live in a digital world, customers interact with businesses through many channels. It becomes difficult for businesses to support each customer through different channels. Yet, by using cloud telephony software, businesses can no longer find it difficult to support customers. At this point, the real question arises: How to choose a cloud service provider?
Cloud call center software is a type of call center software that can be beneficial to your business. It can handle all your business operations with ease. It can help you track, forward, record calls, etc.
So, what is call center software? What are the different kinds of call center software? How to choose a cloud service provider? How can your business benefit from using call center software? What are the top 10 things to consider while choosing the right call center software? This blog provides you with answers to all these questions and more.
- What is a Call Center Software?
- What is Cloud Telephony?
- What are the Types of Call Center Software?
- Benefits of Call Center Software
- Benefits of Cloud-Based and Hosted Call Center Software
- How to Choose a Cloud Service Provider?
- Top 6 Best Call Center Services in 2023
What is a Call Center Software?
Call center software is a technology used by call centers to help businesses handle incoming and outgoing calls. It is a system that enables businesses to manage many communication channels like SMS, phone, live chat, email, and social media. It accomplishes tasks like call routing, gathering caller data, transferring calls to agents, etc.
Call center software is even more valuable when used with a CRM platform. Such a system known as call center CRM software gives you a360-degree view of all the customer support interactions.
What is Cloud Telephony?
Cloud telephony software is a technology that lets you manage your entire call center communications in the cloud. It does not need any physical infrastructure. Moreover, you can get started with your cloud-based call center in a few minutes.
It is a comprehensive call management solution. This means it provides access to call recording, forwarding, routing, and other important calling features.
What are the Types of Call Center Software?
The type of call center software used can have either a positive or a negative impact on your business. The right kind of call center software will boost your business productivity and efficiency as soon as it has been implemented. “How to choose a cloud service provider” should be answered with a proper understanding of different types of call center software. Cloud selection criteria can be based on two main types of call center software:
Hosted call center software/On-Premise Call Center Software
On-premise call center software is a technology that is located at the premises of your business. This type of call center software solution, hardware, and other infrastructure is established at your office. Your IT staff and service provider would maintain this software. The key advantage of this software is your ability to preserve integrated systems and data. But, it has a few drawbacks. They:
- are costly, i.e., hardware, software, licensing, and infrastructure need upfront investments,
- provide very restricted options for integrations,
- need to be upgraded every time with a new version of the software, and
- do not provide the same amount of security, privacy, and uptime as compared with the other types of call center software.
Hosted on Cloud/Cloud-Based Call Center Software
Cloud-based call center software is a technology hosted online and accessible through an app. All the data in this type of software is stored in the cloud that users can access.
The key advantage of this software is that it:
- is much less costly than on-premise call center software,
- does not need hardware or infrastructure to be installed, and
- does not need a dedicated staff to track or maintain the software.
This software also requires minimal upfront investment and can be deployed fast.
Moreover, it can be integrated with other software. They also provide better security and privacy than on-premise call center software.
Inbound Call Center Software
Inbound call center software is a type of cloud-based call center software. It is a technology that allows your business to manage inbound calls (incoming calls). This enables efficient call routing to the right agents. It offers agents an easy UI dashboard that can generate call insights.
Outbound Call Center Software
Another type of cloud-based call center software, this technology allows your business to manage outbound calls (outgoing calls). It can be used to automate the dialing process. This means agents no longer have to manually dial. Additionally, it assists marketing and sales teams in optimizing outreach campaigns to maximize results.
Benefits of Call Center Software
Even though every business is different, the basic need for customer service and sales is common. To help them function better, call center software has been developed.
Call center software has many benefits to offer to your business. This is the reason it is gaining popularity with each passing day. Its many intelligent features replace the need for a receptionist/operator and lessen the burden of agents’ workload.
Below is the list of the many benefits offered by call center software. These points might help you to understand what to consider when choosing a cloud provider.
Enhances Customer Service Management
A call center solution is the first line of contact point for your business. Customers need a great experience. They need quick and fast answers to their queries. But with a large volume of customers, it is difficult to attend to each customer’s query.
Call center software can be helpful in such a situation. It allows you to attend to many customers professionally without any delay. An efficient call center software helps you manage queries, identify urgent calls, set appointments, ticket support, etc.
It is also available 24 by 7. This means that customer service is delivered irrespective of the time they (customers) reach out to your business. Thus, it can be said that call center software is efficient and productive.
Cost and Time Efficient
Establishing an entire customer service department can be costly. This cost increases as your business grows. It is also time-consuming and costly to recruit and hire call center agents. You can, yet, save both time and money by using call center software.
You can perform all the basic tasks using a single tool, such as receiving, tracking, and managing calls. Besides, it has functionality that measures call metrics, routes calls to particular departments, and more. This will allow your organization to save money and time.
A Higher Conversion Rate Increases Sales Deals and Customer Support
You can use call center software as a powerful marketing tool for your company. A timely response to a potential client’s inquiry is a huge part of the conversion process. It is quite common for sales representatives to miss or delay responding to a customer. Yet, call center software will never do so.
It can also assist with making outbound calls for your organization, following up with clients, and much more.
Thus, call center software can increase the chances of turning a prospect into a customer by a great deal.
Have you read our latest blog on ten powerful B2B lead generation and tracking techniques yet? If you haven’t read it here!
Enhanced Business Image and Customer Satisfaction
Have you ever considered how customer service calls can impact your business’s image? A customer who can resolve their queries will perceive the business to be professional.
Another way to state it is that a professional customer service call reflects the seriousness of your business. Call center software can deliver a professional response automatically.
It is designed to provide superior customer service.
Moreover, call center software allows a customer to reach an agent and get his/her issue resolved quickly.
Both of these play a critical role in determining customer service excellence. This proves that a prompt response is the most crucial factor in customer satisfaction.
Also, statistics have shown that over 40 percent of customers prefer professional help solving their issues. It indicates that call center agents are critical in improving customer satisfaction.
Determines the Urgency of a Call
To develop customer loyalty and improve customer experience, a business must prioritize calls. Fortunately, call center software allows you to immediately determine the urgency of calls.
By using it, you can determine which calls should be prioritized first. As a result, agents can respond immediately to those with urgent needs.
Once you have determined which calls are most important, you will no longer have to worry about determining urgency.
With call center software, you can access your client’s list at your fingertips. As a result, the software ensures that all other calls are in the queue. In this way, important calls are not lost.
Secures your Network more Effectively
Data about customers is a precious resource for every business. Information about customers, such as their purchasing history and product preferences, is included. Maintaining your clients’ information can be difficult, particularly if you do not have a backup or security system.
Call center software is often equipped with features such as instant cloud backup. When the software receives a customer call, the information is secured on the system. You do not need to be concerned about losing client information that can help further improvement of your business.
Another big benefit offered by call center software is that they are very flexible. The best call center solutions offer many plans that suit the needs of small, medium, and large companies.
It will also be able to add more features as the business develops. This will help you save money by only paying for the features you use.
Benefits of Cloud-Based and Hosted Call Center Software
Cloud-based and hosted call center software are two different types. Businesses often find deciding between cloud-based and hosted call center software confusing.
Both of these software have benefits in their way. Here, we have listed down the key benefits offered by each of them.
|Benefits of Cloud-Based Call Center Software||Benefits of Hosted Call Center Software|
|Less costly and Improved ROI||You only need to pay for the equipment and systems needed|
|Enhances customer experiences||Gives you peace of mind knowing your confidential data is stored in-house safely and securely|
|Can be easily deployed||Greatest control over functions|
|Empowers employees||Fewer concerns about reliability|
|Help establish a fully-featured, state-of-the-art multichannel call center|
|Improves agent efficiency|
|Provides data security and easy recovery|
How to Choose a Cloud Service Provider?
To select the right cloud telephony software, you must understand your customers, processes, and technology. Each of these is an important indicator of the type of software you should use.
For example, your business must depend on the type of customers (regional, national, or international). It also depends on the way employees work (remote or in-house).
Furthermore, choosing the right software for sustainable growth requires understanding what processes need improvement.
So here is a list of the top 10 factors to consider when choosing a cloud service provider.
Customers can interact with brands through their social media accounts, just as brands can discover them on many social media platforms. To provide superior customer service and support, most leading brands provide digital customer service through various channels.
Today, customer convenience is paramount. Brand representatives go to great lengths to ensure customers/prospects can reach them via their preferred channel.
Thus, selecting a cloud telephony provider should ensure you have omnichannel support. Office24by7 is a good example of omnichannel cloud telephony software. It will enable your customers to contact you through many channels, such as calls, email, and social media, without difficulty.
It lets you track all customer inquiries and concerns in one location. As a result, your agents can assist your customers/leads more quickly. It will also ensure that they are heard. Your brand image will thus be enhanced, as well as consumer loyalty.
Automation can simplify operations to a great extent, reduce workload, and improve accuracy. Recurring customer queries can be delegated to the proper self-service channels, allowing companies to save time handling them.
Much new-age cloud telephony software, such as office24by7, features virtual assistants that take your calls around the clock. This tool relieves you of a large part of the customer interaction burden while empowering callers to help themselves.
By automating tasks, you can serve more people with fewer resources. You will also be able to provide more organized services and assistance. Modern cloud telephony software can also automate workflows.
It can configure rules for agent assignment, record calls, and analyze them to improve customer service. It can also assist you with setting up actions in various scenarios. This enables you to offer the best support to your clients.
Optimizing the Management of your Workforce
Call centers are frequently responsible for managing a large workforce and constantly evaluating their performance, skills, and quality. This requires significant capital investments and can adversely impact service quality.
Your agents can be trained better, resolution quality can be improved, and productivity can be increased with workforce optimization.
Furthermore, having an engaged and empowered workforce can significantly change their attitudes. This will have a positive effect on your customers.
For instance, office24by7 provides a dashboard to monitor remote and on-premise agents. The system allows you to assign dedicated agents to clients, improving convenience and efficiency.
Cloud telephony software can also enable you to optimize your workforce. This is made possible through features such as call routing, call recording, and performance tracking. These features help you gain a more in-depth understanding of what your customers want.
It will also help you understand how your agents can best assist them. These insights can also fill gaps in an agent’s performance and provide clients with peerless omnichannel service.
Any call center relies on its agents for its success, and well-trained agents are a valuable asset. Call center managers need the right monitoring tools to manage and track their agents and processes. The agent schedules can be optimized based on the process needs. This will allow them to reduce long hold times and minimize downtimes.
It is possible to help agent management by utilizing features such as
- Call whispering,
- Call barging,
- Call snooping,
- Remote assistance,
- Performance tracking,
- Feedback analysis, etc.
Calls recorded during inbound or outbound calls may be used to monitor or train agents. Also, when choosing cloud telephony software, it should have features like agent CTI, call transfer, call conference, skill-based call routing, etc.
Real-Time Analytics & Insights
The call center software you select should also enable you to track the results of your efforts. Moreover, it must guide you forward and assist you in identifying efficiency problems within your processes.
Cloud telephony software can give you more accountability and transparency about the necessary changes within your call center. It will be able to provide you with guidance as to what needs to be improved.
Reports and dashboards (within cloud telephony software) generated through analytics enable you to:
- track the health of your business in real-time,
- prepare for emergencies, and
- honor service level agreements.
You can also identify hidden patterns in consumer behavior and predict their preferences through such insights. By creating a predictive customer support model, they can support the decisions critical to your business.
Intelligent Call Routing
Often, inbound call centers face high call or chat traffic volumes, especially during peak hours. This can be challenging for smaller companies with less support staff.
Because of this, callers are forced to wait in long queues.
Agents are also under pressure to resolve calls as quickly as possible. Many leading cloud telephony software offers automatic call distribution (ACD). ACD allows call routing to available agents or departments based on their expertise and availability.
An omnichannel routing feature within the cloud telephony software is also very useful. In that, it distributes incoming calls by the type of inquiry.
It also allows you to reduce call volumes while increasing the efficiency of the call resolution process. It is possible to group your agents based on their departments or expertise (e.g., billing, technical support, sales, etc.).
The call routing feature can also assign calls to the appropriate representatives based on the customer’s response, feedback, and call history.
It is important to pick a call center solution that can meet all of your business needs daily. Cloud telephony software should have features such as call recording, interactive voice response, call monitoring, file sharing, etc.
Campaign and List Management
It is not unusual for call centers to handle many campaigns simultaneously. They also have to handle numerous call lists for follow-up calls. Each campaign has a particular goal or objective that requires separate monitoring.
A marketing campaign’s success is determined by the type of response and conversion it receives. You can easily manage lists and campaigns with cloud telephony software such as office24by7.
Companies use various technologies to meet their objectives, assist customers, engage them, and collect feedback. Thus, it is essential that you select your cloud telephony software in such a way that information is gathered from many sources.
Additionally, it should enhance cross-team workflow and help the smooth transfer of customer information.
With cloud telephony software, you can automate many processes. You can also integrate a call center tool with your existing technology stack.
For example, CRM software can be integrated. This will allow your agents to access data from your CRM tool instantly. This means they can better understand a customer’s journey based on their interactions and previous sales history. Doing so can provide their customers with a more customized experience without switching between many applications.
Moreover, the contact management feature within CRM allows you to assign, reassign, and transfer leads.
Read our latest post on the top 15 reasons why small businesses should switch to cloud telephony here now.
Top 6 Best International Call Center Services in 2023
The best call center software will allow your business to handle all kinds of omnichannel communication channels. It should be designed in such a way that it can help your call center flourish with sales and customer service.
The right cloud service provider should assist in daily tasks by giving immediate access to information. It should also improve agent efficiency as well as customer experience.
Features such as IVR, CTI (computer telephony integration), ACD, and more must be included in it. So, in order to help you answer the question of how to choose a cloud service provider, here is a list of the top six best international call center software services in 2022.
Call center software from Office24by7 is a solution with third-party integrations. It allows you to interact with customers at scale over incoming and outgoing calls.
It can improve contact, enhance customer experience, drive productivity, and handle more calls with fewer resources. Office24by7 call center software is an ideal solution irrespective of whether your call center is inbound, outbound, or blended.
Five9’s call center software is an intelligent cloud contact center. It lets you reconsider customer experience and accomplish substantial business results. It can increase customer satisfaction, empower your digital & human workforce, and increase business dexterity.
Five9 helps customers to be engaged in their channel of choice. It also helps modernize your business operations with automation, AI, and the cloud.
Call center software from Avaya makes it workable to associate video, voice, messaging, chat, and more. It allows you to provide easy experiences for your customers and staff at every point of contact. It ushers in resources, teams, and insights together to intensify your call center performance.
Nextiva’s call center software makes stellar customer service look easy. It is intelligent cloud-based call center software.
With Nextiva, fragmented customer communication comes together with omnichannel support across voice, email, SMS, web chat, video, and social media.
It allows skills-based call routing. Agent experience is simplified by using its single interface.
You also get unified reporting across all the channels.
Call center software from RingCentral offers a customer engagement platform with greater flexibility and reliability. It is an omnichannel solution that allows your customers to contact the right agents. It helps you build customer relationships and maximize agent performance.
Aircall’s call center software is a solution that can transform customers’ experiences. It can set up your call center in minutes.
It can simplify call center setup so your support and sales teams can get up to speed sooner. You can invite your agents, organize your workflows, and can work remotely anywhere.
Answering how to choose a cloud service provider for your business is difficult. This is because the options for affordable solutions are limited. There is also a vast difference in the quality of features offered. Hence, finding the right mix of usability, cost-effectiveness, and features is quite challenging.
Also, the cloud telephony software so chosen should be reliable and flexible. This means that it should not only improve customer relationships but also add value to your business. It should create a lasting impression. Thus, cloud telephony software should be able to offer omnichannel support and help your business grow. An efficient answer to the question of how to choose a cloud service provider could be Office24by7. Cloud telephony software like Office24by7 offers impeccable technology with a simple interface at a very cheap price. As a SaaS-based technology, it enables you to work remotely and help manage your call center operations effectively. Contact us at +91 7097171717 or drop an email at email@example.com today.