3 Proven Strategies to Drive Sales in Insurance Contact Centers
The customer experience has become an increasingly important competitive differentiator for insurance companies. As the contact center is the primary point of contact for many customers, it plays a key role in defining the customer’s relationship with your brand that inevitably impacts the profitability of the organization. A study by the CFI Group showed that nearly 61% of insurance customers who have had a bad contact center experience will consider switching companies, and 26% said they will definitely switch companies because of a bad contact center experience.
While customer service is clearly very important, the contact center also provides a valuable outlet to help insurers deliver increased revenues. The contact center is no longer simply seen as a way of dealing with customer requests, but rather as a far more strategic asset in realizing business goals. In response to slow industry growth, many insurance companies are relying on their contact centers to grow organically by cross-selling and up-selling more products.
To help their sales representatives succeed, many insurers are implementing a new class of business solutions called Performance Support. These systems create a quick and lean solution to address day-to-day business challenges. They use a business-rules engine to deliver sophisticated functionality designed to help your sales team overcome performance challenges, increase sales opportunities and create a memorable customer experience.
Here are 3 proven strategies to drive sales in your contact center and how performance support can enable and empower your sales agents to boost sales performance, while providing exceptional customer service:
1. Give agents the right tools to do their jobs
When taking calls, the number one priority for insurance sales representatives is to make sure they provide quick and effective customer service. With the increasingly complex and large number of systems and the vast amounts of knowledge and data available, today’s agents often spend considerable time searching for information, re-entering data into multiple screens, and struggling to keep up – leading to long average handling time (AHT), frustrated agents, and irate customers.
Performance Support helps sales representatives resolve calls more quickly and effectively. As soon as the agent takes the call, relevant customer information is displayed based on the user’s current open and active application and window. Balloon tips guide the agent on what to say to the customer, what questions to ask, troubleshooting, and can also include alerts for critical fields. Tedious, repetitive data entry can also be completely automated. For example, instead of copy-pasting information from one system to another, the performance support system can automatically enter the information across multiple systems. As a result, agents can perform tasks quickly and have the time and patience to concentrate on the customer’s needs and closing sales opportunities.
Also read: How to Provide Excellent Customer Service in Insurance Contact Centers
2. Leverage cross-selling and up-selling opportunities
Given slow growth in a mature market, insurance companies are capitalizing on cross-selling and up-selling opportunities to maximize on customer lifetime value. This proactive approach offers insurers a great way to fulfill sales objectives, but keep in mind that broad, hard sales pitches are no longer attractive or effective in closing deals. Customers have more choices and higher expectations than ever before and they are also more knowledgeable about their options. The key to sales success is creating valuable conversations and personalized customer service.
With Performance Support, your sales agents have the right knowledge, at the right time, in the right place, tailored to the needs of the customer. While the call takes place, the system analyzes the customer’s background, history, and interaction type and provides the capabilities to recommend an offer in real-time – driving cross-sells and up-sells. Making this information available at the time of the call results in more focused pitches which help increase close rates and the average deal size.
3. Prevent costly errors
Effective agents are confident in their abilities to lead their customer towards a successful transaction. Once a decision has been made, agents should be able to skillfully enter all the relevant information quickly and accurately. In the insurance industry, this also requires adhering to government policies and regulations. As these regulations are constantly changing, agents may struggle to remain up to date and enter the required information into the system, which could lead to a loss of sale.
Performance Support adds a safety net around possible pitfalls by checking the validity of entered information and monitoring information to ensure that an agent does not save an error in a customer’s account. For example, if the agent enters the wrong information or forgets to enter/select a value (e.g. forgot to check a checkbox), a warning message pops up alerting the agent to make the correction. As a result, even novice agents can feel confident that they are doing the job right, every time.
By adopting performance support technology insurance organizations can improve contact center performance, close more deals, and increase the efficiency of sales representatives, while reducing errors. Insurer’s that realize the potential of improving the customer experience and optimizing contact center sales operations are those that will successfully compete and thrive in today’s aggressively competitive landscape.
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