It could be said that the creation of voice over IP (VoIP)—or at least the technological foundation that made it possible—was a happy accident. If key developments like efficient voice encoding and broadly available high-speed internet didn’t exist, today’s global VoIP communications probably wouldn’t, either.
But fortunately, these technologies do exist—which is great news for the growing number of organizations using VoIP to transmit critical communications to clientele around the world.
With two decades and millions of satisfied customers behind it, VoIP might not be a cutting-edge development today, but its flexibility, accessibility, and adoptability continue to give it major value in a customer-communications context. By using the technology either in favor of or alongside their current phone service, organizations of all sizes can save money and add experience-making capability to an audience that has gone mobile-first over the last decade.
Global VoIP Communications and Customer Experience: A Perfect Match
VoIP can be particularly helpful when applied to a small company with a new mobile app or website. Though the organization is on the small end of the SMB scale, their new customer-facing tool offers all the features one would expect any reputable company to offer, such as inventory checking and location-based online ordering.
The app also has a click-to-call button that works on mobile devices, laptops, or mic-enabled desktops. This is where VoIP begins to outpace a traditional telephone network: When customers can reach out to the organization from any device they choose, with communications originating on the web and carrying through to whatever phone systems they reach on the other end, everyone wins.
Traditional phone networks can’t match VoIP’s ability to integrate with various tools and systems. There’s an immense difference between a contextual interaction where a customer finds a button and calls from within the app and an interaction where clientele are expected to look up a phone number, dial it in, explain the purpose of their inquiry, and so on. While a POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service) can handle the communication, it can’t fit the contextual gaps that make a sterling experience for the customer.
VoIP and the Move From Call Center to Contact Center
With the right pieces in place, a VoIP can work as a complement to a traditional POTS service by interfacing with the existing network. When it comes to larger customer communication efforts, however, it’s easy to see the value of VoIP as a total replacement, a trend that paradoxically grows stronger as contact centers (formerly call centers) continue to move away from a voice-first mindset.
The costs and barriers to entry associated with traditional telephone networking often push organizations into a no-win trade-off. By hiring an outsourced vendor, companies can save on operational costs, but risk tarnishing their phone-based experience. If they run the center themselves, they need a location large enough to handle massive telephony equipment. In the past, these problems largely stopped small businesses from running a contact center and gave larger organizations pause, resulting in stilted communications, longer hold times, overworked reps, and displeased customers.
The rise of the VoIP-powered contact center addressed these problems. Suddenly, voice calls weren’t necessarily the primary focus—email, chat, and social media contact took that spot—and the calls that did exist were handled by a medium that required far fewer upfront and monthly costs. A sufficient broadband connection and a few bits of adapter hardware were generally all it took.
The strength, flexibility, and accessibility of global VoIP communications make it a clear-cut winner in the modernized contact center. Because the technology can effectively be deployed anywhere sufficient broadband is available, small and large companies alike can be more creative in choosing spaces. Organizations can expand at a rate that works best for them because this technology comes with fewer upfront and ongoing equipment costs, a considerable benefit for growing organizations in particular.
Conclusion: VoIP is Built for Customer Communications
These are only a few of the benefits that make VoIP such a strong customer communication tool. Global VoIP communications made going global easier for any business interested in expanding their borders, while simultaneously slashing monthly rates for overseas calling needs, dropping the barrier to global telephony, and offering low rates thanks to its internet-based delivery method.
VoIP is one of the most exciting customer communications developments of the past two decades, specifically for small and midsized organizations, where internet-based telephony makes enterprise-level communicative features accessible and affordable. For the enterprise, VoIP can be deployed to cut costs, introduce agility, and expand customer-facing feature sets. The transition from POTS to VoIP doesn’t need to be a comprehensive one—but companies would be remiss not to explore internet telephony’s many strengths as they examine ways to bolster their customer communications.