Customer communication channels indeed play a crucial role in connecting companies with their customers. Brands that have already mastered the art of using these contact channels are known for providing seamless and consistent customer support. The focus is to satisfy every customer hence the need for multiple communication channels has grown drastically. It is quite evident that brands that have implemented 91% more customer retention have implemented omnichannel strategy as a part of brand communication.
What are Customer Communication Channels?
Customer communication channels are defined as the medium through which businesses communicate with their customers. The role of the customer communication channels in a company is to improve the customer experience so that it can eventually create a positive impact on brand reputation and customer satisfaction. To make the maximum utilization of these contact channels, companies nowadays are relying on omnichannel customer support to cover every touchpoint simultaneously.
Top Customer Communication Channels for Your Brand
Communication channels play a vital role for the brands in improving their customer experience. According to a research report by PWC, 86% of the buyers are willing to pay more for excellent customer service. Following is the list of the most commonly used communication channels used by brands worldwide for interacting with customers.
A. Voice Channels
When a customer seeks for an immediate response for an urgent query, they opt for calling the company numbers. Either brands offer the opportunity for direct calling to customer care or they allow the customers to write their contact details in a form so that they can receive a call back from the company.
1. Traditional Phone Calls
Traditional voice call is one of the oldest as well as the most common form of communication channel preferred by the customers whenever they want to reach the brand. Voice call is a tried and tested contact channel used by most companies. It is one of the easiest methods of reaching the companies for resolving the queries.
2. Web Calling
Web call is an excellent way in offering the customers for providing over-the-phone advice without leaving the website. Companies leverage the technology called Web Real-Time Communication (WebRTC) by integrating a click call-to-button in the website where the customers can make voice calls directly to an agent through the website.
A community can act as a mode of communication where a company can not only interact with the customers but also can disseminate information, broadcast messages, and share news with a huge customer base. A brand can get immense benefits using community contact channels in terms of increasing its audience base.
Most companies get immense benefits from their social media groups where they can connect with a lot of people with similar behavior and interests. Brands can gather useful insights like customer feedback, suggestions, etc. Social groups indeed are a great way for customer engagement while building loyalty and trust. Open communications in these groups can be proven to help nurture customer relationships.
Company forums are great for customer engagement where various customers can share their viewpoints and experience regarding the brand. Adding a relevant topic in these forums can help brands in collecting real-time data from their audiences. Forums are used commonly by a variety of sectors of industries for solving problems, sharing people’s experiences, and so on.
C. Written Channels
Still considered one of the most traditional customer communication channels, customers still prefer a written contact channel for resolving their queries. Emails, social media posts, web forms, survey forms, etc. are the modes normally opted by customers to draft their issues to the brands. Well, this mode of contact channel may not lead to faster solutions, however, they are still in use as many customers are comfortable in writing their issues and solving them through emails.
Email is one of the most convenient formal communication channels where immediate response is not necessary. The key benefit of email is that customer service agents can respond to them in between the live chats also. The response time of each service request for emails can extend up to 12 hours. As this is a slower process, customers must use a different contact channel for resolving queries that need an immediate response.
6. Posts and Comments
Nowadays, companies are active on social media for nurturing customer relationships. Customers reach brands through their social media websites by posting reviews or commenting on their posts. Brands must reply to the comments posted by the customers to maintain a good relationship with the customer thus increasing brand reputation and positive Word of Mouth (WOM).
7. Survey Forms
Web forms or survey forms are one of the traditional contact channels that brands use mostly to take any feedback from their customers. Customers have to present on the website to fill the survey forms and that helps the brands in increasing the number of website visitors. Survey forms have customer information that every brand needs to cater to them in a better way.
D. Chat Channels
One of the most ever-demanding customer contact channels, chats are used by every brand for delivering a faster response to the customers. There are ample modes of chat channels that are popular as well as easy to access for the customers.
8. Live Chat
Live chat is a 24*7 customer contact channel where customers can get assistance from brands at any point in time. Most customers nowadays prefer using live chat to resolve their issues so that they can make a purchase decision easily. Customer care representatives also engage themselves in meaningful customer interactions so that they can delight each customer experience.
Learn More: Top 10 Benefits of Customer Service Outsourcing
Social media websites are great customer communication channels that brands rely on. Since, both the customers and the companies have their footprints on social media sites, hence it is easier for both of them to interact with each other in the social media chat options easily. Here privacy is also maintained as well as companies can strictly adhere to the brand tone and voice.
10. Messenger Apps
Messenger apps like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger are the most convenient contact channels that customers use most frequently. With the help of these apps, companies also reach customers with relevant offers and promotions for customer engagement. From standardized banks to e-commerce giants, every sector is now relying on messenger options to serve their customers in a better way.
E. Face to Face Channels
Face-to-face customer communication channels are considered the perfect way in providing personalized customer service. Many customers prefer this mode of contact channel so that they can directly see the product and can interact with the company representative.
11. Video Chat
Video chat is preferred by customers who have a complex issue regarding any product. The main use of this channel is for delivering real-time hands-on customer support from a remote area. The demand for this mode has increased since the pandemic has started because the brick-and-mortar stores are going online.
12. In-store Appointment
Sometimes, the traditional way serves the best; nothing can beat speaking to customers face to face. A brand’s reputation depends on how the store makes its customers feel comfortable in their physical store environment. In-person customer support is so far considered one of the most efficient and convenient in handling customer queries. For instance, in this 21st century, people prefer to go to banks rather than using online banking to avail banking services.
Customer communication channels have always been indispensable to the brands to deliver brand messages to their audiences. If brands use these channels sensibly then they can improve brand reputation, customer satisfaction, and customer loyalty. Prioritizing customers is the most valuable thing that a brand must understand. By leveraging these 12 customer contact channels through omnichannel support, any brand can gain customer’s trust and loyalty while boosting profitability in leaps and bounds.