Customer service is all about listening to your customers; however, as more channels of customer service communication become available, listening becomes more difficult.

Customers rarely recognize different customer service channels. In some cases, customers choose to initiate contact with an organization by phone or social media. Then, the same customer may continue the conversation by email or online chat.

The lines between these separate customer service channels are blurred (especially to your customer) because they are all available on one device – your customer’s mobile phone. The difficult part for companies is that these channels are managed by separate departments, sometimes in different buildings or even different countries.

This creates frustration for the consumer, because they have to restart the conversation each time they change the channel.

Omnichannel customer service addresses this problem by connecting all service channels. Omnichannel customer service allows customers to begin communicating via one channel and seamlessly transition to another channel without restarting. At the same time, it allows businesses to pick up where the customer left off on any other channel without requiring the customer to re-state their problem.

For example, a conversation that starts on Facebook can be continued by voice (over the phone) or by text message. More importantly, the relevant context of the conversation is preserved over both channels. It is important to add that omnichannel customer service does not require using each available channel.

For instance, after a customer completes a survey to indicate personal preferences, an organization may choose to provide SMS (text message) and social media as that customer’s preferred service channels. Other customers may prefer voice and email as their preferred channels of customer service.

No matter which channels are implemented, an omnichannel customer service solution guarantees responsiveness and a higher quality of service for each individual customer.