How WebRTC Will Transform the Customer Experience

Interaction

How WebRTC Will Transform the Customer Experience

By Paula Bernier, Executive Editor, TMC  |  June 01, 2014

WebRTC and big data are poised to usher in what some are calling Interaction Experience 2.0, which will change dramatically how organizations interact with their customers, and reduce costs and improve customer loyalty in the process, according to WebRTC Strategies Inc., which has released a paper on this topic.

Interaction Experience 2.0 will be defined by a handful of key benefits and capabilities, including:

• enabling people to be routed to the best possible employee to address their concerns;

• presenting employees with the necessary information and recommendations to solve the problem at hand;

• allowing customers to use whatever mode of communications they prefer to interface with the organization; and

• simplifying the contact center architecture.

WebRTC and big data can simplify the contact center architecture by reducing the cost of service creation, improving the ability to support cradle-to-grave performance reporting, better using feed-back loops to eliminate defects in systems and processes, and reducing the complexity of system management.

All of the above will lead to a world in which all employees can be leveraged by an organization to solve customer issues and drive customer loyalty by reducing customer effort. And this world is not so far away, as already this year 1 billion devices have been updated with WebRTC functionality, and Berkshire Hathaway analysts expect 4.7 billion devices to have WebRTC capabilities by 2018.

That’s good news considering that the number of global customers is set to triple in the next two decades, according to SAP (News - Alert).

The web is taking up some of the slack. Already, as BIA Kelsey pointed out in a 2011 study, 97 percent of major purchases are preceded by a visit to the company’s website. That’s interesting, as WebRTC Strategies notes, given that the web is an element of customer care that was not contemplated when the majority of contact center platforms were designed and brought  to market.

However, with Interaction Experience 2.0, the web is an even more important part of the equation than it is today. Indeed, this new model involves the convergence of the information infrastructure of websites, servers, and big data, according to WebRTC Strategies. The fact that all three areas continue to advance quickly bodes well for Interaction Experience 2.0. Other evolving technologies that will allow for new real-time experiences are pictures, side channel data, video, and wide band audio. And all that will be supported by ever-improving mobile broadband connections enabled by 4G LTE (News - Alert) and Wi-Fi, which dovetail nicely with the open IP protocol on which WebRTC is based.

WebRTC is at the middle of this convergence, notes WebRTC Strategies.

“With WebRTC, real-time communications can be directly integrated into enterprise information interfaces,” the firm writes. “As WebRTC is a web technology, the barrier between the web and real-time naturally disappears, along with the complexity and loss of context related to legacy telecom architectures. WebRTC enables a rich set of services, from simple text/IM, voice, video and even data transmission enhancement.”

That will open the door to new, exciting and more customer-friendly interaction experiences. WebRTC Strategies offers this as an example of what it makes possible.

“Imagine doing a videoconference with your refrigerator company while your WebRTC-enabled refrigerator sends data to your device via Bluetooth, which is then sent to the agent using the data channel,” the paper posits. “And the agent can push diagrams or instructions to help you resolve the problem.”

That level of interaction and added simplicity are expected to pay off big time.

WebRTC Strategies estimates that a contact center with 1,000 seats and an annual marketing budget of $100 million will be able to reduce customer and agent effort by 15 percent or more, resulting in contact center labor savings of $6.6 million per year due to Interaction Experience 2.0. That same contact center can reduced by half its PSTN expenses in the first 12 to 18 months of operation and by 80 percent in the subsequent 12 months, resulting in a $720,000 per year savings during early adoption and $1.15 million per year following that, according to WebRTC Strategies. Meanwhile, the organization can expect to realize enhanced quality and accuracy of its business processes, more survivable contact centers and lower cost or eliminated IVR maintenance and management. Loyalty is improved by reducing customer effort.  A 3 percent improvement in loyalty can have an exponential impact on marketing budgets.  In all, the savings for this sample enterprise could ring up to $17.7 million per year, or $103 million over 5 years.




Edited by Stefania Viscusi
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