Internet offers many services which are useful in our day to day life. There are many web portals which providing directory services which list traders, shops, local business houses, various service providers etc. along with with easy ‘search and find’ option.
There are few challenges for maintaining a directory service portal with accurate information. For example :-
1. Many directory service web portals still list phone numbers which are no longer in service or disconnected for may business houses. These phone numbers need to be periodically checked and verified. Or before listing them, one needs to verify it. When outdated phone number is listed against any shop or service providers ina directory listing website, it loses confidence in web visitors.
2. Address verification is another tedious and manual process which takes a lot of resources of the web portal. By providing accurate address, a directory web portal increases reputation among web visitors and gain popularity.
3. Many directory services allow web visitors or local business establishments to list themselves on the web portal. The phone numbers, addresses provided by them needs to be verified before publishing them. It is tedious and time consuming process.
IVR ( Interactive Voice Response) System can automate all the above verification process and can easily verify all the data.
How IVR can help directory services ?
1. IVR can make automatic outbound calls against any phone number listed against any address or business establishment. It can dial out the number and report back if the number is not reachable. If it is land-line number and does not ring, gets disconnected immediately or does not get busy tone after trying three times, it can safely assume that, the number does not work or exist and stop it getting published on the website.
When the phone number rings and picked up, then it can announce purpose of calling and then verify his address by asking him to press few keys!
This process can be completely automatic and can be done periodically to keep phone numbers updated and accurate.
2. In order to verify correct information or address, IVR can dial out the phone number, read out address using TTS ( Text To Speech) and then ask the called party to press a key to verify. IVR can also transfer the call to some human agent in case further assistance is required. With accurate address, the web portal can increase its credibility and respect by web visitors.
3. For user submitted data ( where web visitors are allowed to submit their shop, services to be listed in the web directory), IVR can be used quite effectively to validate phone numbers, verify address without manual intervention. While user submitted data can help a web directory portal grow, but these kind of data seem to be most inaccurate. With use of IVR, the accuracy of user submitted data can be improved.
Apart from IVR for verifying data, another important IVR application, Click To Call can be used to track leads generated by its listing, as well as allow added facility for web visitors to speak to these listings free of cost!
If you own a web directory service, yellow pages, it is time to augment your effort using IVR system!