The transition from call centers to contact centers was one born out
of necessity. As businesses began to make the switch to digital
communication at the close of the last century, customers were left with
a lot of questions and concerns. Naturally, their preferred course of
action to find answers was to rely on a familiar technology: the
But as more and more customers began reaching out to businesses, it
became apparent that traditional call centers simply did not have the
bandwidth to handle the flood of new contacts. At the same time,
increased competition meant that businesses were in need of key
differentiators, particularly where customer convenience was concerned.
In response to these demands, organizations began to create and post
email addresses and forms on websites that customers could use to reach
out, but soon found that the influx of emails was nearly as difficult to
manage as the calls.
In an attempt to deflect some of these interactions and to provide a
more-prompt service for customers, businesses started creating knowledge
bases and FAQ pages. This evolved into more in-depth self-service
options and customer online portals. Chat products were added, offering
real agent interactions without tying up agents’ time. Eventually,
social media became an option for customers who wished for a
more-direct, and more-public forum for addressing concerns and
interacting with their chosen brands. Now, modern messaging apps with
rich functionality for convenient, meaningful one-to-one conversations
are surging in popularity.