In an age of ever changing and evolving customer experience, the importance and value of speaking to someone on the phone hasn’t gone away. Despite with the rise in multi-channel customer communications, (something we’re leading the way on here), people still value speaking to a real person.
Even with growing investment into customer services, businesses are constantly under pressure to do more with less and a common focus is the cost of communication. But when it comes to inbound call pricing it’s not always easy to predict or manage demand.
Unlike outbound calls, where past behaviour and business plans can give an indicator of demand, inbound calls are subject to unpredictable fluctuations which makes it hard to negotiate the best deal – do you aim for a higher volume but risk paying for minutes you don’t need? Or aim lower but worry about an unexpected event or business change pushing you into more expensive costs?
Here, we’ve put together a three-step checklist for anyone trying to balance the prediction and pricing challenge for inbound calls.
- Agree a flat rate
Finding an attractive flat rate for your inbound minutes is challenging, but it is essential in finding the best rate available to support business requirements.
- Ensure flexibility is built-in
With the uncertainty surrounding inbound voice demand, you need to ensure that you have a solution which is flexible to your needs. Whether this is being able to choose from a selection of minute bundles most appropriate for you, or the option to upgrade to accommodate for an increase in your traffic.
- Commit to a volume
Deciding on the volume to commit to is difficult, but this is critical to help your forecasting and to gain the best value. Select a pre-customised bundle that suits your inbound voice demand, which you can use help to forecast in the future by paying for a consistent volume of minutes per month.
Of course, this isn’t always as easy as it looks, which is why we’ve updated our pricing framework to make it easier for our customers to predict demand, and more importantly to manage costs regardless of what happens.
This means European customers can accurately forecast inbound voice costs by paying a flat rate, based on the average cost of their voice traffic. By committing to an advanced volume, they get access to a highly competitive price for low voice traffic, and we are the first in the European market to offer this.
Flexibility is offered by the option to choose from a range of customised bundles that best suit your needs. This means that even if customers exceed the bundle limit, they still receive a highly competitive rate, and can upgrade as traffic grows.
The uncertainty around inbound voice traffic won’t ever go away, but with businesses everywhere under pressure to carefully manage budgets, these three steps and our new pricing framework will help keep the inbound call costs well under control.
Christophe Dos Santos, Product Manager at Colt