There's a new Magic Quadrant Report out from Gartner that focuses on vendors providing one of the most critical tools in a company’s online toolkit -- CRM Web Customer Service Applications.
As in other fields, the report, "Magic Quadrant for CRM Web Customer Service Applications," is based on a four-sectioned chart. The horizontal axis represents Completeness of Vision, and the vertical is Ability to Execute. Companies that lead in both are in the upper right quadrant and are called Leaders, while those that excel in Vision are, appropriately, Visionaries. Challengers do well on execution, and Niche Players are less accomplished in both directions.
The CRM Web Customer Service Leaders
The report evaluates companies in 11 areas, including their knowledgebase for self-service, email response management, Web chat, collaborative browsing, virtual assistant, video services, multichannel analytics and multichannel feedback management.
The Leaders in this report are eGain, Oracle/RightNow Technologies, Kana (Enterprise) and Moxie Software. Gartner provides a detailed summary of the Strengths and Cautions for each of the companies in this and the other categories. The research firm said that Leaders are differentiated from the rest by “a well-structured and integrated knowledgebase with advanced search functionality that can handle both structured and unstructured data.” This allows that solution provider to offer a company the ability to more reliably come up with “one right answer.”
The San Francisco-based eGain, which offers on-premises, hosted and SaaS deployments, is praised for its extensive knowledge management capabilities. Gartner also noted that eGain is one of the few providers that has a “highly efficient multichannel solution to support Web commerce and sales-based activities,” in addition to its Web customer service. Cautions for eGain include the fact that its platform does not offer a Microsoft .NET solution.
Oracle-RightNow, Kana (Enterprise)
The report praises Oracle-RightNow Technologies for its mobile extension, how-to videos in its knowledgebase and social media components. Cautions include the lack of a productized SMS offering and the lack of an on-premises option.
Kana (Enterprise)’s knowledgebase supports the embedding and distribution of how-to videos, there’s a strong social listening capability that features natural language parsing of text and detection of customer sentiment, and multichannel analytics are provided. Gartner cautions about the challenges involved in Kana’s integration of its recent acquisition, social CRM provider Ciboodle.
Moxie Software uses a .NET platform that offers social media listening and sentiment analysis, and the suite provides detailed recordings of all interactions across its Web self-service channels. But the company does not serve the small- or midsized business market, and does not offer its own virtual assistant.
Gartner places four companies into the Visionaries space: Avaya, Interactive Intelligence, Artificial Solutions and Presence Technology.
Avaya stands out for its variety of collaborative capabilities with automatic synchronization through page push, allowing customers and agents to share browsing with no customer download required. It also offers real-time video sessions between customers and agents. But the knowledgebase self-service tool is provided through a FAQ and is only available through one of the company’s solutions.
Interactive Intelligence monitors the conversation stream between agent and customer with real-time keyword and phrase spotting, and Web chat sessions offer pre-written responses to speed up agent response time. Gartner cautions about the lack of advanced features in Interactive Intelligence’s knowledgebase solution and the fact the company does not offer its own virtual assistant.
Strengths for Artificial Solutions include a knowledgebase that can exchange data with external systems, a platform that can stream videos within itself or via social networks, and natural language parsing and sentiment analysis of social networks. But the company offers no Web chat or collaborative browsing, and is focused on Europe.
Rounding out the Visionaries is Barcelona-based Presence Technology. The company supports video chat between customer and agent and features the ability to automate social media responses based on the partner knowledgebase, but it does not have a knowledge management solution, a virtual assistant or the ability to provide global deployments.
Challenges, Niche Players
The only Challenger in this report is Genesys, and the Niche Players are SAP, Anboto, Eptica and Kana (Express).
Gartner recommends users of Web customer service solutions keep their eyes focused on the development of several business processes over the next couple of years, including case management and problem resolution, collaborative answering, workforce optimization, voice of the customer, self-service problem resolution and a customer interaction hub.