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Benefits of Interactive Voice Response (IVR) for Your Business

Being put on hold when calling a support service is one of the most frustrating experiences for any customer anywhere. Add to that the fact that they’re probably calling because something has gone wrong with the product or service you’ve supplied them. You can see how waiting in an endless queue to talk to a support agent can compound an existing problem and contribute to a very negative customer experience.

This is where interactive voice response (IVR) comes in handy for a business. It lets incoming callers access information through a voice response system without needing to divert to an agent. Customer input can be recorded either through the keypad on their phone or speech recognition. 

An IVR system can filter and divert incoming calls based on their needs. If your call queue is too full, it can also take some of those customers out of the queue and let you deal with them separately, either through messaging or an alternative phone line. This helps you shorten your queue, attend to customers quicker, and improve their experience with your company, all in one go. 

The last of those is particularly important. Customer experience can define your relationship with your buyers. In an industry driven by repeat purchases, it can define business success for you. Interactive voice response can contribute greatly to improved customer satisfaction and influence their loyalty to your brand. 

 

How Does IVR for Businesses Work?

An IVR service often deflects incoming calls to a messaging platform like WhatsApp or to a secondary line depending on the customer’s indicated intention for calling. The tool is simple, automated, and easily integrates with your customer relationship management (CRM) platform. 

Here’s how interactive voice response works. When your call center receives a voice call, your CRM determines whether or not an agent is available to receive the call. If one isn’t available, the call goes into your queue, while the CRM checks your contacts API to see if the customer can receive messages through WhatsApp or the designated messaging service.

If the customer does have WhatsApp, interactive voice deflection activates and asks the customer if they’d like to switch to WhatsApp instead. If they accept, the WhatsApp Business API sends a notification to their WhatsApp number, asking them to opt-in and receive support there. As soon as they have opted-in, they can start interacting with a live agent or chatbot on WhatsApp.

IVR also lets you send marketing communications including voice notifications, automated authentication requests, and more.

Unifonic’s best-in-class IVR service is used by thousands of businesses worldwide to power their customer interactions. It offers easy integration with our WhatsApp Business API, auto attendants, CRM software, and other business tools to help you improve customer experience across the board. 

 

Benefits of Interactive Voice Response for Businesses

 

  1. 1: Faster Customer Attendance
    Customers calling in always want to be attended to quickly. An IVR service helps you do this in a number of ways. For starters, it can help gather data from the caller so that the system has enough information to be able to direct the call accurately. The information also helps live agents quickly familiarize themselves with the problem once they join the call.
    Interactive voice response deflection can also transfer a call to another communication channel such as WhatsApp where they can be attended to by an agent more promptly.
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  3. 2: Better Prioritization of Calls
    Your IVR system can be programmed with logic that lets it prioritize customer calls in a certain way. Calls that are urgent or coming from a high-value source can be assigned a higher priority in the queue and transferred to the most qualified support agents. This lets you attend to your most important calls in a timely manner.
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  5. 3: Outbound Customer Service
    Interactive voice technology can also be used to initiate calls to customers to provide timely service. For instance, a doctor’s clinic might use it to make automated calls to remind patients about their appointments. It can be used by e-commerce companies or their delivery partners to alert customers about impending deliveries and offer them a choice of delivery times. It can also be used to gather data as necessary or when required for any business activity.
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  7. 4: Marketing Communication
    This is one of the relatively newer applications of interactive voice systems. Businesses can use outbound IVR for lead generation by initiating a cold call with a customer. It can also be used for promotional purposes such as alerting customers about a new sale or informing them when a product is in stock. IVR can also be used to run quick surveys asking customers for feedback on the quality of service they’ve received.
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  9. 5: Increases Automation
    IVR can significantly improve automation for your business across all your customer-facing departments including sales, marketing, and business delivery. Interactive voice technology reduces the need for a human interface. The system can play pre-recorded messages for the customers who can indicate their responses through the keypad or voice input.
    This is particularly useful for rapidly growing businesses that often find themselves without adequate support staff, but still want to maintain their level of customer service.
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  11. 6: Reduces Costs
    Interactive voice response is an excellent way for businesses to reduce their operational costs. By reducing the number of human agents and staff you have to hire, IVR helps you save on your payroll expenses. It also helps your agents use their time more productively, enabling them to get more done during the day.
    IVR deflection also unlocks dynamic opportunities like WhatsApp support, which happen over data connections and are cheaper than using a telephone network to service the customer.
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  13. 7: IVR is Scalable
    One of the best things about interactive voice technology is that it’s completely customizable to your organization’s needs. As you grow and need to handle increased call volume, your IVR system can scale with you. As with other business processes, your call routing logic often needs to change. With human agents handling call routing, they would need to be retrained at the company’s expense. With IVR, it’s a simple matter of reprogramming the system to suit your needs.
    IVR also lets you add more features and options to a custom menu and adapt the messaging to suit different regions over time. All of this contributes to a richer and more optimized on-call experience for your customers. 
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  15. 8: Available 24/7
    Interactive voice systems are always online and can be used to receive customer calls at all hours of the day. This is particularly useful if you have an international customer base across different time zones or if you expect to handle urgent customer queries. In fact, automated, AI-powered IVR systems can help customers attend to themselves with tasks like renewing or canceling subscriptions, checking account information, requesting specific support, and more.
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Deploy Unifonic’s Best-In-Class IVR for Your Business

Build an agentless IVR process with Unifonic’s world-class solution. Incorporate everything from auto attendants to call validation, call capture, call queuing, missed call fallback, call flow configuration, and more. Request a free demo for our IVR solution today.

Unifonic’s omnichannel communication services are used by more than 5,000 organizations globally to boost reach, improve engagement, and build loyalty with their customers. Feel free to reach out to us with more questions about the benefits of interactive voice response technology for your business.

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