Research Report: The Future of Customer Conversations

Conversations with customers are evolving and businesses are adapting to this fast changing landscape.  With over 70% of respondents saying they have engaged with a business over text messaging or web chat, all organizations need to be ready.

Check out this research report and see how businesses use messaging to increase conversion rates and improve customer satisfaction.


The Future of Customer Conversations

eBook: Business Messaging Best Practices

Business SMS/text messaging is the fast, convenient, and preferred way for customers to engage with you.  According to research, “mobile messaging the communications channel with the highest anticipated growth.”

Done correctly, messaging is a powerful tool to help consumers connect with businesses – especially when it comes to customer service.

Business Messaging Best Practices eBook

Forrester Webinar: Connecting with Customers Through Messaging and Bots

Consumers’ Expectations Around Engagement

Today’s consumers’ expectations around engagement have driven companies to “up-level” their accessibility and responsiveness. In this on-demand webinar, Kate Leggett, Principal Analyst at Forrester Research joins Mike Parish, of Brinks Home Security, to discuss how to connect with customers through messaging and bots.

As the leading expert on customer relationship management (CRM) and customer service strategies, Kate shares deep insights into the consumer behaviors that are shaping how many of the leading brands leverage messaging and bots to better engage with their customers. Mike Parish, Director of Experience and Service design at Brinks Home Security reveals the results and surprises of implementing messaging and bots.

About Quiq

Quiq makes it easy for customers to contact a business via Messaging, the preferred channel already in use with our friends and family.  With Quiq, customers can now engage with companies via SMS/text messaging, Facebook Messenger, Web Chat, In-App,and Kik for help with their pre-sales and post-sales questions. Learn more about Quiq today!

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Improve Average Handle Time Using This Key Metric

The way customers can contact companies has multiplied over the years, which has changed the way contact center agents do their work. Previously, Average Handle Time (AHT) was the metric that indicated how long it took to complete an interaction with a customer, which in turn decided staffing levels.

Back in the day, when contact was made primarily via the phone or email, handle time was more straightforward. Now, customers can engage with a company via web chat, sms/text messaging, in their app, or on social media. This kind of asynchronous communication means that a conversation with a customer can span 2 minutes, 2 hours, or 2 days.

Improve Average Handle Time with ‘Work Time’

At Quiq, we’ve developed a metric dubbed “Work Time” that captures the intent of traditional handle time metrics, while accounting for the nuances of the messaging channel. In this article, we’ll dive into the Work Time metric and show you how it’s calculated.

How much time are agents spending on customer interactions?

That is a fundamental question of the contact center. The messaging channel poses new challenges when answering this question owing to its asynchronous nature and a high degree of concurrency.

Agents using Quiq Messaging can typically handle 5 or 6 conversations at one time. Add to this the ability for customers to step away from a conversation at any point and resume the conversation with the agent at a more convenient time, and you can see how calculating agents handle time gets a bit complicated. Quiq Messaging simplifies the calculation and does the work for you through the Work Time metric.

Why is Work Time important?

The way customers can contact companies have changed but the way we measure the success of that contact hasn’t changed much. Regardless of the channel, successful conversations end with a resolved issue and a satisfied customer.

Part of the customer’s satisfaction can be attributed to how long they wait to engage with a representative and how long it takes to resolve their issue. The Work Time Metric helps contact centers track and evaluate these activities to improve the performance of your team and identify what can be modified to make things even more efficient.

How Work Time is measured

When an agent is engaged in a messaging support conversation, he or she might look up an order or do an inventory check. In either case, the work is ultimately represented by a message sent back to the customer. When an agent sends a message, we measure backwards from the time of the message to the most recent of the following events:

  • The oldest unsatisfied¹ customer message on this conversation
  • The most recent message sent by this agent on any conversation
  • The assignment of this conversation to this agent
  • The last reactivation of the conversation (from inactive to active status)

The interval between the most recent of these events and the time of the current message represents a work segment that is associated with the current conversation and agent. These segments will always exclude periods when the conversation is inactive. The diagram below depicts how work segments are calculated with awareness of simultaneous customer interactions by a single agent.

1An unsatisfied customer message is a customer message with no subsequent agent messages

In some cases, the work segments extend back from an agent message to the unsatisfied customer message. In other cases, the segments are cut short due to activity on another conversation, or an event such as assignment.

The sum of all work segments on a given conversation is the total work time and is computed progressively as a conversation proceeds. Quiq exposes this information at several integration points and visualizes it in the Quiq Reports tab.

How to use the Work Time Metric

Work Time is a key productivity metric that can help you manage your workforce in an age of omni-channel engagement. Here are the three main use cases you’ll want to keep an eye on this metric:

  • Staffing Forecasts

Understanding the average work time requirement of customer interactions will allow you to staff appropriately as you direct more interactions to the messaging channel or in anticipation of busy periods.

  • Workforce Assessment

Work time can be used to evaluate individual agents or entire teams. Agents with the same responsibilities but disparate average work time metrics are indicative of under or over-performing agents.

  • Agent Workload Tuning

Quiq allows you to configure how many simultaneous conversations an agent may be assigned through a configuration known as the agent ‘soft limit’. The ideal number of simultaneous conversations varies by use case. Watching the average work time of your interactions while adjusting the soft limit will allow you to identify the optimal configuration. If the work time increases significantly after an increase to the soft limit, you know that agent context switching is taking a toll on your customer interactions.

Measure the productivity of your digital engagement

Messaging is a workforce management game-changer. With messaging, you can do a lot more with your existing staff. That includes decreasing Work Time, while actually increasing customer satisfaction scores. Customers prefer messaging because it puts them in control of the conversation and allows them to engage with a company on their time.

Just because the customer is in control of the conversation, doesn’t mean your contact center productivity is out of control. Agents will have the efficiency of asynchronous messaging and managers have Quiq’s Work Time metric for the data and insights to manage their workforce.

Digiday: Overstock’s customer service texts have a 98 percent open rate

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Quiq makes it easy for customers to contact a business via Messaging, the preferred channel already in use with friends and family.  With Quiq, customers can engage with companies via SMS/text messaging, Facebook Messenger, Web Chat, In-App, and Kik for help with their pre-sales and post-sales questions. In return, companies get a digital engagement platform to communicate with customers. Learn more about Quiq today at


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[White Paper] Building a Digital Engagement Strategy for Customer Service

Digital Engagement Strategy

A customer’s level of engagement with your company is like a pulse. It’s a signal that your relationship with that customer is alive. As long as they’re talking to you, you can make things right or deepen the already positive relationship. If you’re struggling with building a digital engagement strategy within your company, Quiq can help,

In our new white paper “Building A Digital Engagement Strategy for Customer Service” we discuss:

  • Top strategic moves to define your digital customer engagement strategy
  • Best practices for implementing digital customer engagement
  • How to enhance your digital engagement without disrupting operations

It is imperative to recognize the gap that exists between traditional customer service and a digital customer engagement. As stated above, customer activities are the same (shopping, comparing, purchasing, seeking support) but usage and expectations are vastly different.  Consumers no longer walk into a store to browse and talk to a sales person everytime they want to purchase something. They no longer have the time or inclination to pick up the phone or email to place an order or ask a question. The traditional channels are being eaten up by the digital channels. Phone calls and emails are being eaten up by the more convenient SMS/text messaging and web chat channels.

Some companies will use the fact that the activities are the same as an excuse not to implement more innovative means to enhance their digital engagement, or do just enough to keep up with the closest competitor. Those are the companies that will not succeed in the long-run.

Download our white paper “Building a Digital Engagement Strategy for Customer Service” to learn how to drive your digital customer service transformation. We’ve brought our latest content to support you on your journey.

Customer Service Messaging: Ovum Puts Quiq On The Radar

Ovum Quiq MessagingQuiq Messaging is recognized by Ovum in the customer service messaging and consumer messaging app space.

“Unlike other messaging platforms, Quiq’s technology takes a sharp focus on managing messaging at scale.”

– Mila D’Antonio, Principal Analyst Ovum

Ovum’s On the Radar is a series of research notes about vendors bringing innovative ideas, products, or business models to their markets. On the Radar vendors bear watching for their potential impact on markets.

Why put Quiq on your radar?

  • Asynchronous Messaging – Quiq offers a messaging solution that mimics the way consumers interact via messaging in their daily lives.
  • Fast Deployment– The platform’s ability to integrate into various external and internal applications enables fast deployment.
  • Flexible Pricing – Its bundle pricing model provides flexibility allowing companies to scale as customers or volumes grow.

Contact us to find out why Quiq should be on your radar!

Here is a bit more detail from the report regarding Quiq’s functionality. Feel free to watch a short product video to put pictures to all these words!

Quiq’s Messaging Capabilities:

Quiq Messaging supports SMS/text messaging, Facebook Messenger, Web Chat, and Kik. It can be purchased as a standalone customer channel, or companies can deploy one of Quiq’s pre-built CRM integrations, which include Oracle, Zendesk, and

Additional features for Agents include:

  • Multi-conversation UI – enables agents to manage multiple conversations simultaneously
  • Text snippets – offers reusable text blurbs retrieved with simple keyboard shortcuts for on-the-fly responses
  • Collaboration – allows managers to watch the conversation and lend advice to the agent in the background
  • Emoji sharing – creates personal interactions between agents and customers
  • Adaptive response time coaching – measures the customer’s level of engagement and coaches the agent, suggesting which conversation needs the next response
  • Image and video – enables video and image sharing when necessary

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How Quiq Caters to Managers

Notable features for Managers include:

  • Rerouted conversations – automatically reroutes ongoing conversations when agents go off-shift
  • Real-time monitoring – shows aggregate metrics such as current load, number of customers waiting, wait times, and individual agent performance, including the number of conversations handled, average response time, and times unresponsive
  • ACD-like conversation handling – keeps incoming demand at manageable rates with auto-responses delivered to customers when queues overflow
  • Unresponsive agent timers – automatically puts a conversation back in the queue to be handled by another agent if an agent fails to respond within goal thresholds
  • Conversation observation – provides visualization of the entire conversation thread, provides whisper advice, and, if necessary, takes over the conversation without interruption the conversation
  • Historical statistics – can send conversation statistics in realtime to other systems for cross-channel reporting and BI analysis


  • Learn more about the Messaging space and Quiq here.

Customer Service Messaging Infographic

This customer service messaging infographic was developed from the results of a Quiq partnered 2017 U.S. research study with Market Strategies International to understand consumer’s interest, preference, and demand for using Messaging to engage with Customer Service organizations.

See the full report…