With years of experience implementing IVR systems for companies of all sizes there are a few considerations that any business should take to assure themselves optimal IVR deployment.
1. Consider your audience
While this one seems obvious, it is to your advantage to review your recent history of customer inquiries for the most common problems callers have. In addition, you should be looking for opportunities to answer common follow-up questions with your navigation offerings. Step into your customers’ shoes first to think what they need and construct answers that address the most common follow-up responses and your IVR system will already be acting proactively before you receive your first call.
2. Don’t bury your most critical information
A common mistake made in creating a hierarchy of options within your IVR is to bury the most important information too deep in the navigation. If you are a heating contractor servicing a variety of brands – before you start a list of brands and connections therein – your first solicitation of the customer should be “If you are currently receiving no heat, please press 1″. Remember who is calling you and what their needs might be, rank those needs accordingly and work them into your initial offering.
3. Short and to the point
Keep it short and you’ll be better off. Always look at your responses and ensure that you’ve frontloaded any critical information. Also, do not continue to inundate people with information once you’ve delivered what they need – it’s unlikely that someone who has heard the information they were looking for will continue to listen in case there’s something else of interest forthcoming.
4. Give simple directions to your office
In today’s world of GPS and instant maps online, people are getting to places easier than ever – don’t confuse them with too many turns and landmarks in your directions to the office. Deliver simple instructions from a common landmark and your callers will be pleased.
5. Do not convey too much company information initially
We know that you want to grab your callers’ attention with all the wonderful things about your company, but callers are looking for information that’s concise and to the point. Trying to get a caller to listen to a paragraph about the history of your company is not a good idea. Provide small doses of convincing history at appropriate times, but leave the lengthy descriptions for your other marketing initiatives.