Communication is the heart of today’s business world and also the key differentiator in this dynamic and competitive environment being reshaped by the pandemic. The emergence of large Internet bandwidths and a growing tech-savvy generation have made real-time communication a way of life. Though it makes economic sense from a company’s standpoint to integrate real-time communication in every application, it may also be difficult given the high costs of backend infrastructure and interfaces. It can be particularly prohibitive for small and medium-sized companies and startups. So, how to bridge this gap? How to implement real-time communication across multiple channels without spending a ton of money upfront? The simple answer — leverage the cloud! Communications-platform-as-a-service (CPaaS) is a cloud-based service to implement real-time communication strategies into your existing applications without worrying about the backend infrastructure or interfaces.
Sounds interesting? Let’s learn all about CPaaS and why more businesses are turning to it.
What is CPaaS?
CPaaS is a cloud-based communication service that comes with APIs to easily plug them into any existing application.
It offers voice and video chat capabilities, tracking, and other custom features that you can embed into any customer-facing applications, so your employees can answer your customers’ questions and doubts in real-time. At the same time, the analytics can give insights about your customers, employees’ productivity, and more.
It’s clearly a convenient and cost-effective way to connect with customers and establish a lasting relationship with them.
And that’s not all.
Here are more reasons why businesses are moving their communications to CPaaS.
Why are more businesses using it?
CPaaS is a popular option today because it offers a ton of advantages for businesses. Let’s take a look at some of them.
Many businesses today are cash-strapped and wary of investing in new technologies. In fact, the rate of technological obsolescence is seen as a major deterrent for companies to buy expensive hardware and software.
But with CPaaS, no such investments are needed since it’s a pay-as-you-use model. So, a business has to simply plug the CPaaS into their applications to provide real-time communications with customers and co-workers. It entails no upfront infrastructure or development costs.
This way, companies of all sizes can leverage the power of communication at an affordable cost.
Ready to use
Since CPaaS is a readily available platform, all you have to do is integrate its API into existing applications. Also, it provides a development framework to customize real-time communications to meet your specific needs.
CPaaS solutions come with software tools, features, APIs, sample code, detailed documentation, Software Development Kits (SDKs), and more to help your developers integrate it quickly within your existing IT ecosystem.
Many services even offer 24/7 technical support for developers.
Another advantage with CPaaS is the flexibility it offers for developers and companies. You can customize this platform to meet your unique needs and customer preferences.
CPaaS has multi-tenancy support, so multiple users can access the service simultaneously from separate and secure environments.
Further, the cloud architecture makes it easy to scale up or down quickly, and you pay only for what you use. This is a huge advantage for businesses with seasonal demands as you don’t end up paying for services you don’t need or use.
Boosts customer relations
The biggest reason to use CPaaS is that it helps you build lasting relationships with your customers by providing them with a superior customer experience.
When you combine these tools with your existing applications, you can provide contextual answers to your customers’ queries in a way that appeals to them. For example, some people may prefer a video-enabled helpdesk that will show them the step-by-step process of how to fix something, and you can offer that with your CPaaS solution.
In all, you can give your customers what they need and lay the foundation for a lasting and loyal relationship between your company and your customers.
Tracking and analytics
Since CPaaS is a cloud platform that encompasses a gamut of services, you can use it to track a customer’s journey and experience across different channels.
This helps you know more about your customers, their preferences, buying pattern, and more. With such in-depth knowledge, you can offer personalized service to customers that they’re sure to appreciate.
Security is an important area where CPaaS can help.
Health care and banking companies are looking to use CPaaS for authentication and, in the process, minimize frauds and identity threats.
This security can be extended to employees too because the system can automatically monitor agents’ activities. Though CPaaS alone may not be enough to protect insider attacks, it can be used in conjunction with other tools to improve the organization’s overall security.
CPaaS improves the efficiency of employees as they can use multiple channels to collaborate with colleagues to improve the quality of service provided to customers. It also allows them to reach out to co-workers to access the information needed for better efficiency.
At the same time, CPaaS also opens many opportunities and creates new streams for businesses as you can easily embed new services or applications to your existing ones. Another advantage of APIs is you can customize them to meet your specific requirements. For example, you can tweak the API to send automatic reminders via SMS or email to your customers based on their preferences.
CPaaS provides intelligent insights needed to stay ahead of the competition. It gathers information about different interaction points, and these are further analyzed for critical insights and decision-making. Some organizations even prefer to build their intelligent repositories to better understand customer behavior and agent productivity.
In all, CPaaS provides a ton of benefits for organizations, and this is why more businesses worldwide are adopting it.
Let’s now look at a few studies to get an idea of how companies across different verticals use CPaaS to enhance productivity and customer engagement.
Below are some examples of how companies use CPaaS to improve their employee productivity, customer service, and overall operations.
A well-known rideshare company wanted to mask the personal cell phone number of both the rider and the driver. It turned to CPaaS to implement it. In the process, it also implemented a slew of other features such as call recording, IVR, two-factor authentication, and more.
In another case study, a leading banking company wanted to increase its employees’ productivity. The Client Relationship Managers (CRMs) were mostly on the road attending meetings with existing and future clients. One of their key tasks was to create a report at the end of every meeting and store it in a data center. However, this meant that CRMs had to come back to the office to file them.
Since all of these had to be done manually, it wasn’t efficient.
This company chose a CPaaS solution that came with a virtual assistant, so CRMs could submit the reports over the phone. As a result, their efficiency improved greatly.
Combining communication and analytics
A Canadian firm specializing in analytics and tracking leveraged a CPaaS platform that combined communication and analytics across all business applications and processes. As a result, their call tracking costs were reduced by 94 percent, and they could offer better insights into communication patterns for their customers. These case studies sure give you an idea of what CPaaS can do for your business. There are many CPaaS providers to choose from, each with different specialties. The top CPaaS providers, according to GetVoIP.com, are MessageBird, Twilio, Vonage, Avaya OneCloud CPaaS, Bandwidth, and Plivo.
What do you think of this emerging cloud service? Would you be willing to try it?
Please share your thoughts in the comments section.
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