Why your call center software needs an API

call center software api

According to a recent survey, 40% of large companies use over 250 Application Programming Interfaces (API). That’s an astounding figure, but there’s a good reason. Outdated systems can be a blocker to digital innovation, especially when they don’t work with each other to provide valuable insight. Companies that want to remain competitive must leverage all systems available to deliver outstanding customer service that keeps them coming back for more. In this guide, we’ll show you how to use call center software APIs to integrate your systems to provide better customer satisfaction.

 

What is an API

An API is an application programming interface, which allows two different applications to interact with each other. The call center software API acts as a go-between for the two programs and communication takes place through the use of functions or commands that are defined by one program but can be called from another. For example, if you have a website where users can upload pictures, then your site might also provide an API so that it’s possible for other websites to integrate this functionality into their own sites without having to write any code themselves.

Think of an API like a menu in a restaurant. There are dishes listed on the menu, with descriptions for each dish. You specify what you want from that list, and the kitchen prepares the items for you. You don’t need to know exactly how it was prepared or if they substitute ingredients. All you care about is getting what you ordered. That is essentially how a call center software API works.

 

In today’s constantly-evolving economy, workflows and processes are changing so rapidly that many companies can’t keep up. A call center software API strategy provides the agility companies need to adapt workflows quickly and efficiently. Companies that don’t use this approach won’t be able to effectively use data to remain competitive.

How call center APIs work for inbound and outbound

One of the most important features of call center software API is that they are reusable pieces of code that developers can use to connect these systems. Rather than having to write extensive and complex code, they can reuse an API quickly for computer telephony integration. 

Types of APIs for call center software

APIs come in many forms, which describe access to each and who creates and maintains the API. There are three main types:

  • Open API: There are no restrictions on who can use an Open API. Developers can download these APIs from the internet. They are free to use them in any way they see fit, whether it is integrating systems or building a completely new app.

 

  • Partner APIs: A partner API is an interface that companies offer to business partners to allow them access to their data. It can be a part of any software system or service, and it allows certain information in the company’s database to be shared with other parties without having direct access to the system. 

 

  • Private APIs: Private APIs are used by developers and companies internally to the organization. They facilitate information sharing between different departments or even across organizations. 

 

How contact center managers benefit from call center software APIs

Data is the driving force of most businesses. Data collection, aggregation, and analysis are essential for companies to understand their customers. Integrations help combine data from different sources to provide a detailed profile of the customer and the history of their interactions. The more information available, the better agents can provide great user experiences. Call center software APIs can be used for enterprises to create new and effective ways of interacting with their customers, especially in the current digital age when consumers demand top-notch experiences.

Not only that, call center software APIs can help provide real-time data for analytics. This includes the ability to collect and analyze information in order to make business decisions, as well as create a customized user experience that is specifically targeted to meet their needs.

Increased productivity in contact centers

Despite technological advances, contact center workflows are still disjointed. An agent is often required to jump back and forth between systems such as the CRM or ticketing system to accomplish basic tasks. Call center software APIs enable you to integrate these two systems. That way your agents can accomplish what they need for incoming calls quickly from a single interface.

Cost savings for contact centers

Historically, building the functionality for a new feature was time-consuming and costly. Why reinvent the wheel when there is already a center software API available? Developers can now get the functionality they need for these features from third-party sources. That way, you can implement the contact center software features you need at a fraction of the cost.

Improved agility for the contact centers

To create a great customer experience, it’s important to experiment with new methods. It is also vital that you gather feedback from your customers about your company. You should be testing various components of the contact center just as you would test your webpage or mobile app designs. This will help identify new areas for new features to improve the customer experience.

Updating features in complex or legacy systems can take months. Most companies update their websites every six months to two years, according to Hubspot. Similarly, the most popular mobile apps get updated every 30 days or so according to Sensor Tower. So why don’t businesses treat their contact center the same way? With a call center software API, you can implement these new features quickly and easily.

Leverage data the way you want

There’s no fence holding the data you collect inside your software program, so it can be exported wherever needed. You can use integration to connect your marketing customer relationship management software and import that information into data visualization tools to uncover trends regarding customer satisfaction or identify the characteristics of your best customers. With this information, combined with existing corporate intelligence, you can gauge customers’ wants and needs more effectively. It also helps create a positive engagement across the customer journey.

Manage cause and effect with contact center software solutions

The time dimension of cause and effect can be difficult to manage. If you don’t have the flexibility to integrate data resources from disparate systems, your results may not be accurate or complete. A classic example is capturing customer sentiment and determining if the interaction leads to a sale. The time between the interaction and a potential sale could take months. Call center software APIs enable you to aggregate the information you need to get this type of insight.

Collect data from mobile apps

If you are utilizing a mobile app to communicate with customers, you can now collect data and store it in an interaction analytics database. This helps identify why users choose the mobile app and uncover any issues that impact user experience. With this information in hand, you can make adjustments to provide a more pleasant experience.

 

How call center software APIs enhance the customer experience

Customers want to be engaged and have a personal connection with your brand. They expect companies to provide experiences that are unique, differentiated, memorable, personalized, and authentic. The success in this new era will depend largely upon having a strong grasp over customer experience management strategies; most importantly being able to understand what your target audience wants through research-driven insights into consumer behavior .

Salesforce reports that 57% of survey respondents ceased doing business with a company because a competitor provided better. Adopting this approach to contact center systems integration is critical to providing the service customers have come to expect.

Automated callback for inbound call centers

When incoming call volume is high, customers may experience longer wait times. Rather than keeping them on hold, you can offer them the option for a contact center callback while saving their spot in the queue. A call center software API can integrate the Automatic Call Distribution system with an autodialer to call the customer when they are next in the queue.

Sending SMS from interactive voice response

Many incoming calls are looking for basic information. You can save them time by giving them what they need without waiting on an agent. Integrating the Interactive Voice Response system with SMS using a call center software API, you can send the customer the information they need via a text message. This can help reduce the number of callers in the queue. But more importantly, it helps provide a great experience.

Personalize customer experiences with the right call center software APIs

Contact centers can create rules in a call center software API that tell it to automatically pull certain information from a call center system to respond in a certain way. As an example, an API can pull information from your call center software to identify customers with call wait times that exceed the target length. You can then use an API to send that information to a customer relationship management system that alerts someone to follow up with the customer to offer an apology.

 

Call center APIs: The backbone of the omnichannel experience

Customers now expect a seamless experience from brands that go beyond digital marketing. To be successful in today’s world of digital marketing and omnichannel customer support, you will need a highly engaging experience across all platforms of communication used by your target market Omnichannel is a way to deliver a personalized and consistent experience across all channels, including digital, social media, web, email, apps and business phone systems. Omnichannel customer support strengthens your brand by giving the customer a user-friendly way to get support.

 

Omni-channel vs. Multi-channel call centers

With multi-channel customers can choose the method that is most convenient for them at any given time. For example, if a customer has an issue with product information, shipping issues, or promo/discount questions, they may choose to communicate via chat. If their issue is more in-depth and difficult to convey through typing alone they may want to call the agent.

That said, multichannel support is a customer-centric strategy that allows customers to communicate with the company through multiple channels. This can include a business phone system, email and social media platforms. Companies need to provide different methods of contact because it is an indication that the company cares about its customer’s preferences and overall user experience.

Omnichannel support is the next level of customer support. This approach helps customers to seamlessly choose the communication methods most convenient for initiating interaction. It also allows them to transition between different communication channels in the same conversation or engagement.

For example, If a customer is interacting with a sales or customer service agent through live chat but doesn’t feel their issue isn’t being resolved, then the same agent can call them directly to continue the conversation on the business phone system. This allows for an effective resolution quicker in one interaction rather than starting over and considering other methods of communication next time.

 

Why omnichannel is the way to go 

Consistency in handling customer support calls

In multichannel, there is a tendency for channels to become siloed and isolated from one another. As a result, each time the customer calls, they will begin to notice differences with each interaction. Omnichannel support focuses on consistency over all of your customer’s interactions. That way, no matter when or which channel they choose their experience remains exceptional every time.

 

Ease of use

Customers don’t want channels; they just want easy interactions that solve their problems with minimal effort needed on their part. Omnichannel allows just that. While multichannel programs offer different options for the customer, these often don’t make it easy for customers to interact. If one channel isn’t working, customers need to start a new interaction in another channel which can be frustrating and confusing. 

Call center software APIs aren’t just beneficial, they are increasingly becoming necessary. When companies integrate information from disparate systems, agents can have a seamless workflow that allows them to work more efficiently. This is because they can find the right resources at the right time and not waste their time switching between tasks. It ultimately Helps with providing customers with the top-notch support they’ve come to expect.

 

Ready to get started integrating APIs into your contact center? Ozonetel can help

Ozonetel packs all the tools you could ever need to improve service levels within an affordable, feature-packed, easy to integrate, quick to set up cloud call center solution. Contact us to learn more about our top call center software.

 

 

 

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