Top Differences Between Inbound and Outbound Call Centers
Outbound Call Centers is increasingly being recognised as major sources of generating better customer service and increased profits. The advent of the Internet has created an even larger consumer pool, giving rise to a phenomenon known as ‘Outsourced Customer Service’. With a huge number of outsourcing companies offering call centers, it has become increasingly competitive for businesses to get business through the center.
Advantages of an Outbound Call Center: Many businesses utilise an outbound call center as a way of communicating with existing and potential customers. Such a center can be used to relay messages for special promotions, inform people of sales/bargains, take messages for research and market analysis etc. Since most of these calls are made by live agents, they are often used as a method of training. A trained agent can carry out many marketing strategies through a single conversation. This alone helps in improving a businesses image and helps it gain new clients/customer base.
Advantages of an Inbound Call Center: Besides taking incoming calls, Outbound Call Centers handle all types of outgoing calls. Calls coming in are handled by trained professionals who can identify the caller and advise the caller on the best course of action. Advantages of call centers include the fact that they help save money by reducing the need for agents and additional staff. This results in the saving of a business’s resources. Since the majority of calls are handled by trained agents, they ensure quality calls. They also help solve customer problems.
As per a recent study, an average of $6.5 million is spent by call centers every year on selling products and services to their customers. Since most sales come from repeat customers or existing customers, an Outbound call center plays a major role in customer retention. An inbound call center allows customers to talk to live agents who can understand their needs. Customers also feel more at ease knowing that their conversations are handled by trained professionals.
An inbound call center also has an advantage over the competition because it has access to a greater number of leads. Leads from existing customers can be used to generate new customers whereas fresh leads can be generated through tech support calls. Therefore an inbound call center can have a greater impact on businesses’ sales and customer service.
The cost of an outbound call center using AWL is less than the cost of a traditional agent. This is because there is no need for training, employees or sophisticated equipment. The costs of tech support calls, which would be needed if an agent was employed, are eliminated.
Many businesses are making the switch to utilizing an outbound calling service. The main reason is because of the benefits it offers to the business. Call centers are able to provide higher quality customer experience. This high level of customer experience leads to increased sales and repeat customers.
It is important to note that technology is only one reason many businesses are choosing to utilize call centers. The other reason is because of the excellent customer service they provide. Call centers are generally viewed as a positive addition to many businesses.
The biggest difference between an inbound call center and outbound call centers is their format. An inbound call center operates more like a traditional office phone center. Business owners simply call to speak with an operator. The operators can provide a list of available representatives. The customers simply choose which agent they wish to talk with. Some telemarketing companies provide this same service but with a more personalized approach.
One way to differentiate the two is by using more personal terminology. Inbound call centers use terms such as telemarketers and script. Outbound calling agents often use terms such as telephone hotlines, live operators, or even voice mail to address the needs of the customers. The reason for this is because many times the customers are receiving busy signals. Personalized services usually improve customer satisfaction.
IVR systems also differ between inbound and outbound call centers. An IVR system is basically a computer that receives and organizes incoming phone calls. It provides an automated message delivery system and even allows the customers to make their own voice responses. This system is usually part of a PBX system where it can route calls based on caller choices and create unique voice responses. In other words, this system is basically a customer support representative’s lifeboat.
Another important factor is customer service. Some companies will have call centers that are located at the company’s place of business. These agents are given more training and are less likely to offend the customers. Other companies may have their own call center that is stationed at the customers’ homes. This is a great option because the agents can be more hands on and interact with the customers.