How do you create seamless process experiences without causing communications hiccups for your customers? The most exciting answer comes from Applications Programming Interfaces (APIs), which, when you deploy them in combination with cloud computing, deliver robust and scalable service platforms.
APIs empower you to integrate all of your business communications channels into one Unified Communications-Platform-as-a-Service (CPaaS) solution. The Cloud gives you the flexibility to support volatile traffic demands and add new features quickly, including all of your brand’s communications channels.
In a recent article on VentureBeat, APIs are explained to enable companies to more easily build products and services that would otherwise take too long to build. This new approach delivers CPaaS using APIs.
Customers should see your channels as pathways to your brand. When your customers contact your company, they expect to connect without explaining their situations repeatedly; they expect you to know them immediately.
You can create the service solution to achieve that goal using APIs that connect different cloud-based applications internally or from subscriptions to third-party services. The result is a modular CPaaS architecture that delivers seamless experiences for your customers.
When companies make their APIs available to the public, third-party developers find new ways to improve the code and design new use cases. Standard third-party APIs come in a large variety and there are some that are more popular than others which are explained in an article on WebDocs. The standard protocols that drive open APIs include HTTP, HTTPS, JSON, SOAP, and REST, which call for data from one cloud-based platform, transform it, and then move it on to another.
You can use this technology to support just about any service, including some of the most innovative business communications solutions. CPaaS providers like Nexmo, Twilio, and Plivo plug communications channels directly into your applications.
From the customer’s perspective, the entire process should feel like a developing relationship, without any disruptions. The appropriate APIs can connect such channels as SMS, email, chat apps, call center transcripts, and number lookups to create one seamless Omni-channel hub.
Users may initially contact you by web chat, Facebook, or Twitter. Later, they might reconnect with you by email or phone your call center and ultimately meet with a representative. The more information your reps have regarding the relationship up to that point, the better they can serve your customers and secure more prosperous relationships on behalf of the company.
For example, Nexmo provides such features as messaging, voice, and authentication that integrate directly into your application. Nexmo also captures the data for real-time insights that make your decision-making process smarter.
When your brand has multiple channels to recruit new customers and build relationships with them, the goal is to capture prospect information, sales, and account details. Customer service has it during any further engagement with the customer. Your clients’ benefit is a seamless experience across all the channels representing your brand, even in the most dynamic growth environments.
Your company’s advantages include more efficient operations, cost less, and produce higher customer engagement while delivering more excellent lifetime value for your clients. The ultimate benefit is better customer relationships and higher efficiency that increase the return on your investment.
Meyer proclaims the end of conventional PBXs, replaced by API-enabled CPaaS. APIs and the Cloud capabilities are evolving rapidly, so you cannot take the technology’s present state for granted. The fast pace of change today means that companies must be alert to new threats.
Gartner advises companies to monitor innovations and evaluate strategy continuously at the C-suite level. Competitive advantages can shift quickly; threats to your market position can come from anywhere. Also, just because a vendor provides third-party developers access to their APIs now, it does not mean that they will continue to allow it indefinitely; you need to have contingencies.
Businesses must accept that cloud-based platforms connected by APIs are now the standard, regardless of the industry. Gartner refers to digital economies that match modular platforms’ networks to ecosystems of stakeholders; these are the users that are your team members, vendors, and customers, who expect consistently unique experiences from your brand.
There will constantly be emerging opportunities that customers will instantly accept as the new norm. In response, you will scramble to keep up yet again. Whether it will be to integrate virtual reality or some other new service, APIs’ languages will remain fundamental to your business communications solution for the foreseeable future.