How a Voice API can improve CX

Icon of a person with stars over their head in front of a mobile phone

Sometimes, customers would rather just talk to you—and they often still turn to traditional phone systems to reach businesses they interact with, whether they’re a Gen Z-er or a Baby Boomer.

The downside: Traditional telephony all too often fails to live up to what consumers expect these days. Think agonizing wait times, labyrinth-like menus, and interactions that feel anything but personal.

The upside: Voice technology is powering new ways to ensure your customers feel like valued VIPs from the first ring.

Let’s break down how voice call APIs can help your efforts to create better CX.

Understanding the building blocks of better conversations

What is a voice application programming interface (API)? 

Your customers love talking from their phones. But what if they could do the same from their favorite apps or websites? A programmable voice calling API could make this possible.

In simple terms, a voice call API embeds the ability to make, receive, control, and monitor calls into software applications. From IVR systems to voice alerts and notifications or conversational AI, you name it, voice APIs can handle it.

How does this benefit the developers? It helps eliminate the need to build voice functionalities from the ground up such as having to establish and maintain SIP infrastructure and in-house expertise. Instead, a voice API is enabled with HTTPS-based connectivity and comes packed with ready-to-use components for lightning-fast development, where you can optimize the voice experience to suit your customers’ expectations. That means everybody saves a whole lot of hassle!

With such promise from voice calling APIs alone, it’s evident why the global telecom API market is forecast to hit $603.66 billion by 2029.

What is customer experience (CX)?

CX is your customers’ overall perception of their engagements with your brand. It’s how they feel during and after making a purchase, calling for support, and other interactions throughout their journey. 

That’s why each touchpoint matters: it can influence consumers on what to do next.

  • Do they remain loyal? Positive CX boosts the likelihood of customers trusting a company (4.2x), recommending it (5.2x), and spending more (3.5x).
  • Or do they ditch your company? 32% of customers worldwide cut ties with brands after a single bad experience, even if they loved them or their products.

It’s then important to treat each interaction not as a mere transaction but as an opportunity to delight and leave an excellent impression. And here’s another compelling reason to do so: Improved CX can increase revenue by 10-15% and lower costs by 20-50%.

So, how can a voice API improve CX? 

1. Flexible communication options

Voice call APIs can connect to messaging platforms to give customers an omnichannel choice while interacting with a business. For example, they may initially text or chat about a quick inquiry and, later on, prefer to contact an agent about more complicated issues. Offering multiple channels by using a voice API in combination with a messaging API is hassle-free. You can also make it just as effortless for customers to move from browsing the internet to starting a voice conversation with a click of a button. Want to customize the voice-based communication further? Keep customers in the loop with automated voice alerts using media playback or text-to-speech.

2. Quality connectivity

Callers expect dependable, crystal-clear connections every time. With a solid voice calling API, customers won’t be met with dropped calls or garbled audio that ruins the experience. Thanks to the backing of our own enterprise-grade global voice network, Bandwidth’s Voice API helps facilitate consistently higher-quality interactions across all digital engagement channels with a superior uptime for reliable connectivity.

3. Efficiency

Customers get the help they need fast—no running around in circles, no explaining things multiple times.

A voice call API’s capability to convert speech to text provides many ways for companies to enhance efficiency using application logic. With real-time transcription, voicemails can be transcribed, live calls can be captioned, and voice-enabled chatbots can understand and respond to spoken customer queries. Let’s say a call gets escalated. The supervisor can easily get up to speed by reviewing the real-time transcript of the active call, which minimizes wait times.

Here are other ways programmable voice APIs drive efficient issue resolution.

  • Convenient self-service: Offer automated options to solve common problems over a phone call.
  • Intelligent routing: Quickly direct callers to the correct department to avoid unnecessary transfers.
  • Proactive support: Give agents instant insights into the caller’s identity and mood through voice biometrics or sentiment analysis.

4. Scalability

What happens during peak periods? A reliable voice API should be able to handle the high volume and make sure customers won’t have a poor experience just because things are busy. Plus, as your business grows and you improve your application, you can rapidly scale to meet customer demands by rolling out new voice-based features or refining the ones you already offer. This continued innovation and improvement in how you interact with your customers could only mean a better experience for them.

5. Privacy

Customers are careful about sharing their personal information, and rightfully so. Using voice call APIs with robust privacy safeguards shows your customers you get it and take their data seriously. For instance, voice API features like number masking anonymize voice conversations by replacing phone numbers with proxy numbers during calls. 

This extra layer of protection reduces the risk of customer information being exposed or misused and gives your customers peace of mind and satisfaction. 

For some customers, enterprise-grade security safeguards are key to fulfill promises to their customers and end users. Strong technical security measures and certifications are a helpful guidepost and may be required in certain regulated industries. For example, if you’re in the healthcare space and require a BAA (Business Associate Agreement),  you’ll want to work with a provider who can deliver HIPAA-eligible programmable voice services and comply with the HIPAA Security Rule.

Delight your customers with developer-friendly voice APIs

At Bandwidth, we handle the complexity of telecom infrastructure, so developers can focus on building cost-effective apps for a more loyal and less frustrated customer base.

How easy is it to create voice-enabled applications with Bandwidth? Easy as API!

Here’s an overview of the process:

  1. Make a sub-account. If you don’t already have one, create a new sub-account specifically for your voice application in the Bandwidth Dashboard. 
  2. Set up a voice application. Name your application—consider one that describes its function—and choose ‘Voice’ as the application type.
  3. Set up voice callbacks: Pick a callback method (GET or POST) and enter a callback URL. Authentication is optional but requires a username and password if enabled.
  4. Link to a location: Select your sub-account and assign a unique location name. Then, choose ‘HTTP Voice’ as the protocol, link your voice application, and adjust any necessary settings.

Need onboarding assistance? Bandwidth provides detailed developer documentation and hands-on support to help get you started.