IP telephony services provide businesses with many tools, from basic conferencing and call forwarding to mobile phones, to speech analytics and voice robots. How exactly they help businesses solve problems in an environment of global instability, we tell in our article.
During the lockdown, IP telephony has become one of the main tools for saving and at the same time achieving efficiency. Analysts clearly record this trend: revenue growth of IP telephony providers has slowed down, but there are more and more subscribers.
As for the global VoIP market, it is growing on average by 3% per year, according to Express Wire, and will reach $102.48 billion by 2026.
Why IP telephony for business?
IP telephony (or VoIP – Voice over Internet Protocol) is a telephone connection using the Internet and the IP protocol. It allows you to make and receive calls, use multiline lines (as in call centers), and record and monitor agent conversations.
For the user, IP telephony is no different from a regular telephone conversation, such as calling 1-800 Canada from abroad and the like. But for business, this is a real boom of opportunities. VoIP can help every department in a company, whether it’s sales, customer service, or an internal team working on a common project because everyone depends on phone calls in one way or another.
Depending on the size of the company and tasks, the structure of consumption of basic and additional IP telephony services is changing. A business chooses the optimal set of services in terms of price/benefit ratio in order to cover its current needs.
What can VoIP do specifically for your business? Let’s see.
Expands the geography of sales
IP telephony works on the basis of a virtual PBX (private branch exchange) – this means that georeferencing is not important for it. So it allows businesses to expand the geography of sales without roaming and inappropriately high tariffs.
For example, IP telephony and an international payment system for receiving payments can be connected to the site in less than an hour. Do this – and the company will expand the available audience without finalizing the product to at least several countries that speak the same language.
Virtual landline or mobile numbers in other countries are also relevant when opening representative offices in another country, which is necessary for export-import companies. IP telephony helps to work in the international market without buying separate local numbers.
Transfers costs to the supplier
PBX for IP telephony works according to the SaaS model – that is, almost all the equipment is located at the service provider. It pays for station maintenance, replacement of obsolete equipment, and software updates. This is how a business saves on buying its own office station and hiring support employees: all you need to work is the Internet, a communication device (even a regular smartphone will do), and a connection to a service provider.
No need to buy numbers for each device
SIP is a system that allows you to bind several channels of receiving / transmitting data to one phone number. All call centers work according to this system:
- the company specifies one phone number
- multiple people calling at the same time
- the system itself distributes them among operators
- multiple conversations on the same number at the same time
The usual communication with a separate number for each phone may still be suitable for a small company that rarely receives several calls at the same time. If you have been noticing for several weeks that during one conversation someone else is trying to “breakthrough” to you, it’s time to optimize the communication system:
- A busy line leads to a loss of profit: if you sell a non-unique product at regular market prices, most customers will not wait or call back – they will open a competitor’s website and call him;
- A busy line annoys customers, and an annoyed customer is a hard-to-convert customer;
- Multi-channel IP telephony will help organize a single support service if the company has several branches: you just need to assemble a department in the city with the cheapest infrastructure and make telephone calls to all offices from there.
Multi-channel helps to process the maximum number of calls and reduce the number of “dial-ups”.
Analyzes and optimizes the work of the sales department
VoIP is not just an opportunity to conveniently receive calls, but also detailed analytics. It is she who will help evaluate the current work of the team and optimize processes.
What data to evaluate the business and what does it mean?
- The number of missed calls helps to assess whether there are enough channels for the current load and whether managers are slacking off from work. Reduce the number of missed calls – reduce the loss of profit.
- The number of people who called for the first time and those who have already contacted the company before shows the influx of new customers and repeated calls. VoIP statistics in this regard are not as detailed as in full-fledged analytics systems, but they will give a basic idea of the situation.
- Average wait time – agent workload: if it is consistently high, you may need to hire another full-time operator or freelancer for peak hours. The more efficient workflows are, the better the results for the business, and the fewer resources are spent on achieving them.
- The average call duration is a kind of indicator of the quality of the work of a sales manager. If one of the managers consistently has very short conversations, listen to their recordings: perhaps he has a lot of “refuseniks”. In this case, the employee needs to be trained, and the sales script needs to be finalized — this will increase the number of successful transactions and improve the impression of the company even for non-converting users.
- Load during the day shows the periods of activity of your customers. It will help to optimize the work of the department.
Evaluation of advertising channels
It is interesting that in large companies there is a practice of linking different numbers to different channels for attracting customers: for example, one number is indicated in contextual advertising ads, another on leaflets, a third in advertising on social networks, and so on.
This approach allows you to later accurately assess the number of referred customers through different channels and their effectiveness.
And understanding effective and ineffective channels helps to optimize marketing budget spending and get the most out of advertising campaigns.
Statistics analysis is the key to optimization, control, and efficiency.
Monitors and improves staff productivity
Call recording is a useful feature for any business and department:
- Call recordings are good teaching material. If the company has a training department, give them access to the files, and if not, have one of the experienced sales managers supervise newcomers and sort out their mistakes in conversations for training. So employees will be able to hear themselves from the outside and correct their speech and manner of speaking, which will make the sales department more productive.
- Documentary evidence helps to resolve conflict situations with clients and control staff. If a complaint about the service is received, you don’t have to make up your mind from other people’s words – you can listen to the conversation and understand whether the client’s claims are justified or the manager acted in accordance with the working procedures.
- Listening to calls helps evaluate the work of sales managers. It will help to form a team of top salespeople with the highest performance and weed out slobs.
- The base of conversations helps to improve scripts and analyze customer behavior. Once a month, gather the sales team for a planning meeting, listen selectively to the recordings for the last month, and track: which objections occur most often, which arguments remove them the fastest, how people react to different stages of the script, who makes the most purchases (people of what gender, age what unites them). The better you know your audience, the easier it is to understand their pain and offer a solution. The more often your decision is made, the higher the revenue!
Increase sales with advanced features
IP telephony is a unique functionality that combines the benefits of other communication systems. You can integrate telephony with CRM and Call-Tracking analytics systems, set up multi-level call forwarding, connect click-to-call and interactive voice menu (IVR). All of them help to improve the level of customer service, and integration with CRM and the click-to-call button also directly affect the number of closed deals.
Integration with CRM
In the long run, this feature improves the efficiency of working with existing customers: it increases the number of repeat orders by personalizing customer service scenarios, it helps to calculate LTV (Lifetime Value), and even increase it with the help of personalized upsells.
In the daily work of managers, the integration of telephony with the CRM system helps to get information about the client from the card in CRM, collect all the data in one place, and learn the correct segmentation. Simply put, the inbox manager will immediately see the client and their previous orders, they will be able to greet them by name, clarify whether everything is in order “with that last order” from the card in CRM. Care and attention as they are.
Together, this improves service quality and sales performance, leading to cost optimization and increased profitability.
According to Agendize, 61% are more likely to contact a business that has a click-to-call button on their website, and QuickSprout research has shown a 200% increase in conversion rates among mobile users when using this element! What else to add.
If you are going to enable this feature, prepare your team for a 20% increase in load beforehand – that is how much the number of calls increases according to FlightMedia. Perhaps you should first hire a +1 operator and connect another channel, because the load will jump from the first day, and will not grow smoothly.
Plus, the well-established work of operators through IP telephony, with a voice menu and personalization, increases the credibility of the company and works for the reputation of the business.
Without communication, business does not work. At the same time, you can choose the optimal set of IP services for both small organizations of several people and 500+ companies. IP telephony has become a universal solution for many urgent business tasks precisely because of its simplicity and accessibility with a large number of possibilities.
Philologist with higher education, professional translator, former volunteer and teacher, entrepreneur, and salesperson with 13 years of experience. Now a copywriter in the field of Internet marketing, helping businesses create useful content and promote their products. I write on various topics, from business, fintech, web design, and software reviews to self-development, travel, and health. In my free time, I create music and songs that no one hears and take photos and videos that no one sees.