A call center which is basically a centralized office used for handling large requests via telephone plays a very important role in determining customer loyalty and the overall long-term profitability of any business, though for some unknown reasons, it’s effectiveness is still undermined by many. What they fail to understand is that their very reputation will be on the line if the companies fail to serve their customers’ needs in a professional way and by professional, I mean through reputed call center services.
Long gone are the days when call centers were simply viewed as rooms packed to the brim with people sitting in small cubicles, handling calls. Today, call centers not only provide landline and online communication with its legendary outbound and inbound call center services but also manage email, fax, real-time chat, call routing, IVR, automated callbacks, mobile SMS etc. among many others.
But as I mentioned earlier, these are secondary. So, let’s talk a bit about its primary services along with its different types based on their operations and functions.
What are Inbound and Outbound Call Center Services?
Inbound call center services are referred to one where a customer initiates to a call center to get his queries resolved whereas Outbound services are where call center agents make calls to prospective or existing customers. Below I will give brief descriptions of the most common services provided by both.
Types of Inbound Call Center Services:
a) Customer Support is what the name itself says, servicing the customers before, after and during the purchase to satisfy their needs through interaction. Inbound call center agents handle everything from complaints to malfunction of products to taking immediate action to resolve customer’s issue. It also plays a significant role in bringing back customers.
b) Inbound Sales recently are becoming more profitable than their traditional outbound counterparts since its focus is primarily based on becoming found by desired customers. It is basically referred to services where the customer enquiring the organization for a product or service is further prompted into buying it or at the very least, added to the database for future sales.
c) Help Desk / Technical Troubleshoot is a very important part of call centers that not only provide technical answers but also evaluate problems regarding computer problems and IT related products such as pre and post-sale technical support, on-site tech support, network tech support, application, desktop and warranty support, maintenance services etc. Providing an excellent help desk service is vital to keeping a loyal customer base.
Types of Outbound Call Center Services:
a) Lead Generation through outbound call center services has gained immense popularity recently in various sectors such as education institutions, insurance agencies, travel departments etc. It is basically the process of attracting interest to your company’s product or services in order to cultivate an audience for your sales via different means such as telemarketing, online lead generation, direct mail etc.
b) Customer Surveys via telephone has enormous significance in contact center services. It is basically a form of research where call center agents make outbound calls to customers regarding their views on issues as to how well or how badly its client company is performing along with analyzing customer’s need for advertising/marketing purposes. The companies thus make improvements based on the customer’s feedback.
c) Telemarketing Services is used by client companies to promote their products and services to potential customers to build relationships and generate leads over the telephone. It uses both persons trained in conversational skills and sometimes recorded voices known as automated telemarketing to enhance sales, promote products/services or update the customers with currently available offers.
d) Appointment Scheduling is another one of the important services availed through outbound calling. It involves using the list of profiled and targeted information obtained through lead generation to set up appointments with the prospect leads along with preparing reports containing crucial information addressing the unique needs of the prospect to further help conversions.
Companies that avail inbound and outbound services understand very well that call centers have the potential to fuel the success of their business and by doing so, they not only keep themselves up to date with the current communication methods but save money and time and most importantly improves the relationship with their customers.