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Over 35% of contact centers have already started using cloud technology.

That’s not surprising—cloud-based contact centers are more effective, scalable, and cheaper than standard solutions developed on-premises. Read on to see what a cloud contact center is and what CX challenges it addresses and improves.

What is a Cloud Contact Center?

Shortly put, it’s a comprehensive set of integrated tools enabling you to handle all the inbound and outbound customer communication in your company from a single dashboard that’s available in the cloud (worldwide, 24/7). That means cloud contact centers offer more than typical call centers, which are just about voice communication. A typical cloud contact center solution includes the following communication channels:

  • Text messaging (email, chat, SMS)
  • Voice (phone and videoconferencing)
  • Intelligent assistants (chatbots, voicebots)
  • Social media

But its functionality doesn’t end here! Because everything is cloud-based, you can benefit from a number of integrations with other tools and platforms that you use in your company.

A cloud contact center can be integrated with your:

  • CRM and marketing automation tools
  • Website
  • Mobile/web application
  • E-commerce platform
  • Social media profiles

Moreover, the cloud offers tremendous flexibility and scalability - with a cloud contact center, your agents can work from any place and on any device, so you’re not tied to any fixed location. Companies offering cloud-based solutions usually have data centers located in many different countries, so they can offer the same high quality of service regardless of the location.

This way, you can make the most of the omnichannel model in your company and provide users with a top-quality customer experience no matter where and how they get in touch with your business. It’s also the shortest way to introduce automation to your business (most automation tools also work in the cloud, so it’s a breeze to get them to work together via API).

We’ll talk more about the benefits of cloud contact center software in a few moments.

How does it compare to traditional contact center infrastructure?

In a sentence? It’s cheaper and more effective. Cloud contact centers don’t need any telecom infrastructure (e.g., a PBX) or additional call center software. To some extent, it’s a standalone, self-service solution. The communication happens in real-time and is based on VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) technology.

Furthermore, with a cloud contact center platform, you don’t have to worry about upgrades and backups - they are the provider’s responsibility.

Traditional infrastructureCloud-based infrastructure
Tied to one vendor, limited customizabilityFull customizability due to API integrations
Limited scalabilityFull scalability
A high upfront costFlexible pricing models, no upfront costs
Requires on-premises IT hardwareIT hardware limited to computers and Internet connection
Requires physical locationWorks globally, 24/7

The cloud provides answers to all the major contact center challenges

According to a recent survey conducted among 300+ US-based contact center leaders, there are six crucial challenges that on-premises contact center managers have to struggle with:

Interestingly, all of these challenges can be easily solved with a cloud-based contact center solution.

First of all, you can enhance customer satisfaction thanks to omnichannel capabilities - you can talk to your customers, answer their questions, and solve their problems in many different digital channels and communication forms. The cloud is fast and always available, so you can shorten the time necessary to deal with a given query, as well as limit potential downtime to a minimum.

This means bidding farewell to the disembodied voice we’ve all heard at least once:

You have reached our company. Your call is important to us. Please hold while we connect your call…

The cloud also comes in handy concerning workforce management issues. As we’ve already mentioned, with a cloud-based contact center, you can hire consultants from all over the world. You are not limited to any one country.

Automatic customer service processes are vital to 54% of respondents. Cloud solutions are prevalent in the automation world, so you can benefit from many tools automating your work, including intelligent customer assistants (chatbots and voicebots) powered by artificial intelligence.

Lastly, the cloud offers more flexible pricing, especially compared to on-site solutions, which always cost you the same money, regardless of your current workload or requirements. Cloud-based solutions are tailored more to customer needs, meaning you don’t have to pay for services you don’t use.

For more on call center strategy, check out our guides to switching to a cloud contact center and deciding whether to outsource customer service. And to get a steady stream of CX updates sent straight to your inbox, subscribe to our newsletter for the latest CX trends, insights, and tactics.